DominickRusso, P.A.

2641 Airport Road South, Suite A108, Naples, Florida 34112 ♦ (239) 774-2500

Criminal Defense Attorney, Naples, Florida

Criminal Defense Lawyer Naples Florida Attorney Naples, Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer, Dominick Russo, defends people accused of crimes in Naples, Florida, including driving offenses such as DUI.  

With more than 15 years as a criminal defense lawyer in Naples, Florida, I have the experience to help you resolve your criminal case.

As your attorney, I will personally handle your criminal defense case in Naples from start to finish. I will be the attorney you meet with. I will be the attorney who prepares your case, and I will personally appear in court with you for your court dates. I will not hand the case over to another attorney.

Hablo Español.

Map to the office:

The Collier County Courthouse is a short walk from the office.

View Larger Map

What's new in criminal law in Naples Florida?

Collier County now has a Mental Health Court! It's needed because it will allow people who are arrested in Naples, and who suffer from a mental illness to get the treatment they need, instead of jail. You'll find more information about mental health court on my blog.

The phone numbers at the courthouse have changed (774-xxxx is now 252-xxxx). Click here for a list of the new numbers.

More than you wanted to know:

Naples Florida criminal defense lawyer Dominick Russo is a member of the Florida and California bars. He is a 1984 graduate of Naples High School. After high school, he attended Middlebury College in Vermont. He spent his junior year in Spain, taking classes at Madrid's Instituto Internacional. He graduated from Middlebury in 1988 with a double major in history and Spanish. After college, he worked for five years as a public school teacher in the Los Angeles Unified School District. He then attendedLoyola Law School in Los Angeles, where he was an articles editor on the Loyola Law Review. After graduating with a J.D. in 1997, he returned to Naples and began working at the Public Defender's Office, where he remained for more than three years, before opening his law office.
      In his free time, he is a volunteer with the Naples Cat Alliance, a no-kill, free-roaming cat shelter.

“The police want to talk with me. What should I do?”

Often people will call me and tell me that the police want them to come down to the sub-station and make a statement. “What should I do?” they ask. I tell them not to make any statement to police. They often ask, “Will that make me look guilty?” The answer is: “No. It's your constitutional right not to talk to the police, and you should envoke that right, always.” Need more convincing?
   Click this LINK and watch the video, (if the police want to talk to you).

Criminal defense trivia: Who was Miranda?

We've all heard of Miranda, and the Miranda rights, but why are they called Miranda rights? Ernesto Miranda was a 23-year old Arizona native with an elementary school education. He was a dockworker with a prior sex-crime record. In 1963, the police took Mr. Miranda in for questioning after his car was seen in the vicinity of where a rape took place a few days prior. The detectives told Mr. Miranda that his car had been identified as the perpetrator's vehicle. He agreed to stand in a line up. The victim could not identify him but the detectives lied and said she did. Mr. Miranda then confessed. The officers did not tell Mr. Miranda that he had a right to an attorney, and Mr. Miranda confessed to the crime in two hours. Mr. Miranda wrote a confession and signed it voluntarily and of his own will with no threats, coercion, or promise of immunity, and with knowledge of his legal rights, understanding that any statement he made may be used against him. Miranda was convicted of rape and kidnapping and sentenced to 20 to 30 years on both charges. Miranda’s lawyer Alvin Moore appealed on the grounds that Mr. Miranda did not know he was protected from self-incrimination.

Before the United States Supreme Court's decision in Miranda v. Arizona, the law governing custodial interrogation of criminal suspects varied from state to state. In many states, statements made by criminal defendants who were in custody and under interrogation by law enforcement officials were admissible at trial, even though the defendants had not been advised of their legal rights. If the totality of the circumstances surrounding the statements indicated that the suspect made the statements voluntarily, it did not matter that officers had not apprised the suspect of his or her legal rights. Miranda v. Arizona made it all the way to the United States Supreme Court, and was argued February 28th through March 1st, 1966 and decided on June 13th, 1966. The Court ruled that due to the coercive nature of custodial interrogation by police, no confession could be admissible under the Fifth Amendment self-incrimination clause and Sixth Amendment right to an attorney unless a suspect had been made aware of the rights and the suspect knowingly waived them. Ernesto Miranda's confession was overthrown, but he did not become a free man. The State had enough evidence independent of the confession and Mr. Miranda was re-tried and served 11 years in prison. Mr. Miranda was paroled in 1972.

Courts have since ruled that the warning must be “meaningful,” so it is usually required that the suspect be asked if he or she understands the rights. Sometimes, firm answers of "yes" are required and because of various education levels, officers must make sure the suspect understands what the officer is saying. It may be necessary to "translate" to the suspect's level of understanding.

The Miranda v. Arizona case made a significant difference in the police and court system in the United States. Once custodial interrogation begins, (when a person is not free to leave and the police are going to ask questions) law enforcement officials are required to provide Miranda warnings, informing a suspect of the Fifth Amendment right to remain silent and Sixth Amendment right to have a lawyer present during questioning. Thus, before questioning can begin, a police officer must inform a suspect of the following statements: You have the right to remain silent; anything you do or say can be used against you in a court of law; you have a right to consult a lawyer and/or have the lawyer present during questioning; if you can’t afford a lawyer, one will be provided for you; and should you choose to talk to a lawyer, you have the right to stop the interview at any time. When you have been read your rights, you are said to have been “MIRANDIZED.” The right to Miranda warnings is triggered by custodial interrogation, meaning the police are going to ask you questions, and you're not free to leave. It doesn't matter where the questioning occurs. It could be at the place of the crime, in jail, at a theme park, work or even in your house. If you are not free to leave -- beyond the need for a pat-down search triggered by reasonable suspicion - then you are in custody, and Miranda warnings should be given. The police are allowed to ask you questions to establish your identify; name, address, date of birth, without reading you your rights first. However, you may or may not be required to answer if there is no reasonable suspicion of wrongdoing. So, can you tell me who wrote the Miranda rights? It was Harold Berliner, district attorney of Nevada County, CA, and Doris Maoer, deputy attorney general. They came up with the wording we all know.

How did these words become so widespread? Berliner realized that every officer of the law would need to know these words; he had a background in publishing so, he had the words printed on a thin, wallet-sized card and sold hundreds of thousands of them. It has become part of our national heritage.

You must be wondering about what ever happened to Miranda? Well, it’s not a good ending. When Miranda got out of prison, he would autograph peoples tickets, but soon returned to prison several times after his release in 1972 on other charges. Miranda was stabbed to death during an argument in a bar in 1976. He was 34 years old. The suspect was arrested and read his Miranda rights, but chose to exercise his right to remain silent. He was released and no one was ever charged with his murder.