FREE CONSULTATION: (561) 557-8686

In the News

The Office of the State Attorney in West Palm Beach has dropped its manslaughter charge on William Difonzo, a Palm Beach County man accused of murder after a fight broke out at a local bar. Difonzo, through his attorneys at Meltzer and Bell, P.A., filed a Stand Your Ground Motion arguing self-defense.

Stand your ground allows an individual use deadly force if he or she reasonably believes that such force is necessary to prevent death or great bodily harm. Stand your ground forgoes the typical duty to retreat when the person has the right to be in a place.

Difonzo was facing 15 years in prison. “It was dismissed because he stood his ground,” said Steven Bell, partner at Meltzer and Bell, P.A. and Difonzo’s defense attorney. Bell stated that Difonzo was basically cornered outside a bar and he had the right to defend himself.


Palm Beach criminal defense attorney Steven Bell was quoted in a recent USA Today article discussing Tiger Woods’ possible eligibility for Palm Beach County’s first-time driving under the influence (DUI) offender program. The August 8 article touched on Woods being scheduled for his first appearance in court following a May 29 arrest for DUI. Tests showed Woods had no alcohol in his system, but he told officers that he had taken Xanax and other prescribed medications.

“Looking at the facts of Tiger’s case, I don’t see any reason why he should not be offered entry into the program,” Bell told USA TODAY Sports. “When you look at the probable cause affidavit, the case is very similar to the cases I’ve handled where my clients have been allowed entry into the program.”


Back to top

Meltzer & Bell, P.A. represented John Barrington Kennedy, the 21-year-old man accused of using a gun to threaten a woman on the campus of Keiser University. The alleged victim told the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office that she pulled into a parking spot and noticed Kennedy reach into his vehicle and emerge with a black semi-automatic handgun that he allegedly pointed at her. WPTV-TV reported that deputies recovered a black semiautomatic Glock 27 .40 caliber handgun from Kennedy and charged him with aggravated assault with a firearm and exhibiting weapons on school property.


Back to top

Meltzer & Bell, P.A. defended Matthew Notebaert, the 32-year-old Loxahatchee man charged in a 2014 crash that killed his wife while the couple was having sex. The case drew national attention from such outlets as People magazine, the New York Post, and the New York Daily News. On March 29, Notebaert pleaded guilty to vehicular homicide and DUI causing injury and was sentenced to five years in prison after Palm Beach criminal defense attorney Steven Bell was able to get prosecutors—who sought a seven-year sentence—to drop related DUI manslaughter charges.

  • Law Firm 500 Fastest Growing Law Firms In the U.S - 2017 Honoree
    Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was an honaree for the Fastest Growing Law Firm In the U.S. award in 2017.
  • National College for DUI Defense
    The NCDD is a professional, non-profit corporation dedicated to the improvement of the criminal defense bar, and to the dissemination of information to the public about drunk driving law and related issues.
  • Broward Association of Criminal Defense lawyers
    BACDL's mission is to assist, support, and strengthen the Broward County criminal defense practitioner in the zealous defense of individuals and their Constitutional rights.
  • Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
    Promoting excellence and integrity in the practice of criminal law.
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
    NACDL is an American criminal defense organization. Members include private criminal defense lawyers, public defenders, active U.S. military defense counsel, judges and more.
  • National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws
    NORML is an American non-profit organization based in Washington, DC whose aim is to achieve the legalization of non-medical marijuana in the United States.
  • DUI Defense Lawyers Association
    The DDLA was founded on principles of democracy, transparency, and freedom of speech. We provide support, resources and education to the top DUI attorneys nationwide.
  • Better Business Bureau
    The BBB, founded in 1912, is a private, nonprofit organization whose self-described mission is to focus on advancing marketplace trust.
  • Law Firm 500 Fastest Growing Law Firms In the U.S - 2017 Honoree
  • National College for DUI Defense
  • Broward Association of Criminal Defense lawyers
  • Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws
  • DUI Defense Lawyers Association
  • Better Business Bureau