Law Office of Matthew Konecky - April 2020

THE KONECKY

APRIL 2020

JOURNAL

561.671.5995 | 954.272.6187 | www.matthewkoneckypa.com 110 SE 6th Street, Suite 1700, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301 4440 PGA Blvd., Suite 204 Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33410

Alligators, Alligators, and More ALLIGATORS Defending Florida Man

Florida man accused of giving beer to an alligator.

written to grab our attention. They are like advertisements hoping you’ll read them or click a link to a news website. They never tell you the full story, and they keep you guessing. Take that first headline for example — “ Florida man accused of giving beer to an alligator.” In my practice, I might defend giving the beer to an alligator. We might use a voluntary intoxication defense on behalf of the alligator. It’s not an easy thing to do, but under the right circumstances, it might make sense legally. The defendant is likely to have their charges reduced if we prove that being intoxicated influenced their ability to recognize what they were doing was a crime. Many different scenarios could play out depending on the circumstances. In the actual story, the crime wasn’t giving the alligator a beer. Legally speaking, there isn’t a law on the books that says you can’t give a beer to an alligator. You could potentially get into animal endangerment laws, but for the sake of this article, we won’t dive into that. However, the “ Florida man” in this story was accused of enticing an alligator to bite his arm — putting himself in danger. He wasn’t injured, but he did catch the alligator and then poured beer in its mouth. As a result, the man was charged with a felony of unlawfully taking the alligator. The man released the alligator

Florida man nearly loses leg — and life — to alligator while hunting hogs.

Slice of pizza convinced Florida man to end police standoff.

Florida man brings drugs to a drug bust, gets himself busted.

Florida man charged with impersonating officer for McDonald’s discount.

immediately after the incident, but it was all caught on video.

Florida man parks Smart car in kitchen so Hurricane Dorian won’t blow it away.

While it’s unlikely my law firm is going to get a call from someone who has found themselves in a “Florida man” situation, it’s completely possible to form a defense when you have the full story. The story above doesn’t have all the details, but it paints a bigger picture, and we can see where we might start to form a case. Of course, no matter the situation, it’s always important to share everything with your attorney. When you leave something out, it’s like being left with only a headline. We may have some of the details, but there are a lot of assumptions, and we have to pick up the pieces as we try to form a solid defense. It’s possible, but it’s far from ideal.

Florida man slaps girlfriend with cheeseburger.

These are all real headlines and tell the wild stories of what people have done in our great state. But in my criminal defense practice, could I (theoretically) defend these alleged crimes? The answer is yes! Interestingly enough, some of these “Florida men” have already gone to court and had their related charges dropped or were otherwise found “not guilty.” Some of them even had the charges dropped before ever reaching court! While many of these headlines sound outlandish and make you read them twice to make sure you read them right, there is always more to the story. Headlines are

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Ultimately, my advice to everyone is to just stay away from alligators.

–Matthew Konecky

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Keep It Green It can be tough to figure out how to switch up family game nights. Kids can be very attached to their electronics, making it hard to get them invested in anything else. With Earth Day coming up this month, you have the perfect excuse to put down the phones and get outside to save the planet. If you’re looking for ways to spend time with your kids on Earth Day, try these eco- friendly family activities! Pick up trash and make art with it.

THE BEST ECO-FRIENDLY AND KID-FRIENDLY ACTIVITIES FOR EARTH DAY

don’t have an outdoor garden, you can pick out some indoor plants or create a hanging garden with recycled bottles! Build a compost system. If you have a garden, the next best thing you can do is start composting at home! Did you know that you can compost your cardboard products? Instead of waiting for the recycling truck every other week, you can use your spare green and brown waste to create incredibly nutritious soil for your garden! Green waste includes vegetable and fruit scraps, eggshells, nutshells, coffee grounds, etc. Brown waste includes cardboard, dead

You can teach your kids a lot about downcycling and upcycling through recycled art. Downcycling is when waste is recycled to become a new product, but there’s a loss of quality as a result. Upcycling is the opposite: Whatever you recycle becomes a product with a higher value. One way to upcycle is to create recycled art. Use old newspapers or magazines to create collages or papier-mâché bowl sculptures around balloons, jars, or your own custom shape with chicken wire. You can also use old plastic or glass bottles as beautiful hanging planters or create a memorable wind chime from jar lids, tin cans, plastic silverware, and old rubber bands. Plant a garden. Gardening is one of the most rewarding ways to spend time outdoors. Your kids can learn about caring for another living thing and grow their own vegetables and fruits! A great way to start is to find out what’s in season in your area. If you

leaves, paper egg cartons, wine corks, and more. Get a bin and maintain a green-to-brown ratio of 1-to-2. Layer, water, and turn the

compost to keep it healthy. It can take anywhere from two months to a year, depending on what you put in and how often you turn it. We hope you and your family have fun with these planet- loving activities! Stay clean!

CLIENT SUCCESS STORY

Download these books today ! YOUR LEGAL RESOURCE When it comes to the legal process,

you may have a lot of questions. Well, I have answers! Right now, I am offering my two resource books for free. ‘One Bad Night’ If you or a loved one has been arrested for domestic violence, you may not know what to do. Get answers and find insight into the criminal justice process. ‘What You Must KnowAbout Your DUI Case’ Being convicted of a DUI charge can drastically change your life. Learn what goes into a DUI case and what your first step should be. Head over to MatthewKoneckyPA.com today for your free downloads!

“Matt is a bastion of chivalry. He handled my case with grace, personal attention, sympathy, diligence, professionalism, and knowledge. He was the first lawyer I called. I called a plethora of attorneys after him, and he was the one I came back to settle on because he demonstrated knowledge, a willingness to fight for me, and an ‘I don’t like to lose’ attitude while maintaining

professionalism. He’s a down-to-earth guy who will hear you out and attack the case to get you the best possible outcome. He won’t back down from a challenge and sets proper expectations. Don’t just listen to me, though; give his office a call. In life, nothing is guaranteed, just like in any case; however, he fights, and you’ll be glad you called him. Give this gentleman a shot. You’ll be glad you did!” –Rob

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W e all know we need auto insurance for our personal vehicles, but when it comes to rental cars, many people decline the supplemental coverage. We assume that because we will only have the car for a short period of time, we don’t need to worry about this insurance. In some cases, this is fine — your current auto policy may cover you. However, that’s not always the case. You may have the wrong coverage, and if you have no coverage at all, this can lead to big costs following an accident (always read and understand your policy — don’t assume). If you are driving a rental car and you get into an accident, what should you do? At the scene, your first priority is to get your bearings and get medical assistance. Once you call the police and first responders, and if you are not badly injured, photograph the scene, including the damage to the car, the site of the accident, and damage to the other car and other property. Get contact information from any witnesses and cooperate with the police when they arrive. What to Do After a Rental Car Accident AVOIDING RENTAL RUIN After you leave the scene, notify the rental company. Your paperwork should outline what to do in the event of an accident. Follow their instructions to the letter. This can mean the difference in whether procedures go smoothly or if the company takes you to court for damages. If the rental car is damaged, liability coverage pays out for injuries or damages to other people involved in an accident when you are at-fault, but it may not cover repairs to the rental. If you carry full or collision coverage, these policies may pay out for rental repairs. If you lack any coverage, the rental car company may file a lawsuit against you to recover associated costs.

Some credit cards offer collision coverage when you use their card to rent a vehicle. Most rental car companies, at an additional cost, offer a collision damage waiver when renting a car. This waives your liability when it comes to repairs to the rental, although you may have to pay to cover the company’s loss of income while the car is out of service. If the other party is liable for the crash, the claim generally proceeds like a typical car accident claim. The responsible party’s liability insurance covers your medical bills, lost wages, and other losses. It should also cover repairs to the rental.

MEME CORNER

Cooking With Ashley

SPRING CHICKEN SALAD

Inspired by Food Network Magazine

Ingredients

1/2 lb small red-skinned potatoes, halved

• • •

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

4 romaine hearts, torn

• • • • • •

Kosher salt

1 rotisserie chicken, skin removed and meat shredded (about 2 cups) 1 Kirby cucumber, peeled, halved lengthwise, seeded, and sliced

2 tbsp fresh chives, chopped 2 tbsp fresh tarragon, chopped 2 tbsp white wine vinegar 1/4 cup low-fat plain Greek yogurt

• •

4 radishes, cut into wedges

Freshly ground pepper

1 yellow bell pepper, thinly sliced

Directions

1. Into a small pot, place the potatoes and cover with water. Season with salt, cover, and boil until fork-tender, about 6 minutes. Drain and cool. 2. Meanwhile, in a food processor, pulse the chives, tarragon, vinegar, yogurt, 1/2 tsp salt, and pepper to taste. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil and pulse to make a thick dressing. 3. In a large bowl, toss the romaine, potatoes, chicken, cucumber, radishes, and bell pepper with the dressing. Season with salt and pepper.

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INSIDE 561.671.5995 | 954.272.6187 www.matthewkoneckypa.com 4440 PGA Blvd., Suite 204 Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33410

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Defending Florida Man

Eco-Friendly and Kid-Friendly Activities for Earth Day Hear From Our Clients What Should You Do After a Rental Car Accident? Spring Chicken Salad

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The Best Locations for Spring Blooms

S pring is here, which means beautiful flowers are finally showing themselves after a long winter. Here are some of the best places in the U.S. to see flower blossoms and welcome the season. Great Smoky Mountains The Great Smoky Mountains National Park stretches across North Carolina and Tennessee, and while its scenery is beautiful year-round, the park is especially alluring to nature enthusiasts during the spring. Through this season, miles of lady’s-slipper orchids, irises, cardinal flowers, and lilies dot its lush green landscape. It’s dubbed “Wildflower National Park” throughout this time of year, and you can experience it by car or on foot. The park also offers expert-led tours that weave through the flowers during their peak bloom. Crested Butte Crested Butte, Colorado, is best known for its winter sports and summer hikes. But recently it has drawn the attention of flower enthusiasts for its unique pink, orange, and gold alpine wildflowers that appear in the spring. This natural phenomenon even inspired the creation of the annual Wildflower Festival in midsummer, which See Spring Bloom

In These Beautiful Locations

features nature walks, art, photography, culinary experiences, and more. For a truly unique experience, you can even ascend the town’s titular Crested Butte to spot some rare alpine sunflowers next to the picturesque West Elk Mountains. Antelope Valley The California Poppy Reserve in Lancaster, California, is a 1,780-acre park that features sloping hills covered with fields of vibrant orange, yellow, and red poppies in the spring. Warm temperatures and heavy rainfall across Southern California during this time of year create a brief period of thick blooms as far as the eye can see. And while the poppies can be enjoyed from the comfort of your car, the best way to experience them is to walk the leisurely Antelope Loop Trail for a breathtaking, up-close adventure. Spring flora is gorgeous and naturally attracts large crowds of people every year. If you plan to visit any of these destinations, just remember that their ecosystems are delicate. Respect park signs, stay on designated trails, and do your part to make sure these flowers return year after year for future generations to enjoy.

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