Imagine a visit to Florida on vacation. There is a traffic stop or a minor accident and the cop smells alcohol and asks you to step from the car. Usually there will be a seemingly innocent effort by the cop to see if you are lost. Questioning will follow as to where you came from and where you were going. This is followed by a series of "tests" designed to be videotaped and to make drivers look silly.
What happens to me after a DUI arrest?
Upon your imminent "failure" of these field or roadside sobriety tests, the cop who stopped you or the "dui specialist" who is called to the scene of the traffic stop, will take you and the video to the county jail where a driver is asked to submit to a breath test. Failure to comply with the request results in the seizure of your driver's license and a suspension of your license that will be effective immediately or in as little as 10 days. Through a national data-sharing system all states will be notified of this event. Your insurance company, aan employer, a potential employer will now have easy access to this alcohol-related traffic stop.
Some Florida counties also produce a video at the jail at or near the time of the breath test. Hernando County, Florida is one such county. Hillsborough County Florida sometimes records the performance of field sobriety test in a room at the jail. The police will sometimes record the request ( in Florida this is called an Implied Consent warning ) and refusal to take a breath test on video.
DWI Defense or DUI Defense under the strict Florida law can be quite challenging. Often the police are the main and only witnesses. A video of your driving and perforformance on the field sobriety tests will be made available to licenses authorities, prosecutors, and judges. Under Florida public records law, the media can obtain copies of all reports, including this video.
What about a Breath Test for DUI?
The breath test in Florida usually does not include a handheld test at the roadside. The cops usually take the driver to jail and try to obtain a breath result using the Intoxilyzer, which is the exclusive machine used by the courts and the Bureau of Administrative Reviews in attempts to convict drivers of DUI or to suspend driving privileges for a result of over .08. An valid test in Florida consists of two samples within minutes of one another and the results must be within .02 of each other. So it is not uncommon for citations or police reports to have multiple results. In fact it is a defense to have only one result over .08 or improper results that are out of the .02 margin of error.
How do I get out of jail for a DUI Arrest?
If the result is over .08, then the jail is required to hold the driver until a second breath test is less than .08. This is true even though bond has be posted. Upon release from jail, drivers wonder, what happened to my car? Cops usually will rummage through the vehicle seeking cash, contraband (usually drugs or weapons or open containers of alcoholic beverages). A tow truck is generally called to the scene and the vehicle is impounded.
What happened to my car?
Getting the vehicle back can be quite a challenge. Once you figure out who took your car and where it went, these oprators require a photo ID. This is tough, since the cops took your license in their efforts to suspend your license.
Scientific evidence from the breath test and/or the blood tests is being presented against you. Damaging evidence against you may include: the breath test, officer's testimony, and Standard Field Sobriety tests.
How do I get my Driver's License back?
If you have no prior DUI charges, then you may be eligible for a business purposes only restricted driver's license. You can waive any challenges to the traffic stop, the alleged refusal to submit to a breath test, or having a breath result of over .08 at the time of the alleged driving. To obtain this waiver permit will cost around $500.00 in fees and costs, none of which is paid to a lawyer. These costs are paid to enroll in the Alcohol Traffic Education ( DUI School ), to the Bureau of Administrative Reviews, and to the Division of Drivers Licenses. The disadvantage of this option is that a permanent entry regarding the traffic stop, the refusal, or a breath result over .08 is made on your driving record for all with access to see.
Another option, usually with the help of a Florida DUI Lawyer, is to have your attorney request an administrative hearing (with or without witnesses ). There is a filing fee and upon a properly submitted request within 10 calendar days of the the DUI traffic stop, such a hearing may ne set withinn 30 days. If eligible for a permit, as indicated on the DUI traffic citation, a hardship license valid for 42 days will be issued. Under the Florida DUI law, you are now entitled to challenge facts and validity of the DUI arrest and/or DUI traffic stop.
The hearing officer uses a checklist to determine if the DUI arrest documents meet the standards of the Florida Administrative Code to validate the suspension of your driver's license that was sought by the areesting officer on the date of the driving under the influence incident. The issues are limited to a few technical requirements surrounding the DUI traffic stop, the refusal to submit to a DUI breath test, or the evidence of a valid DUI breath test over .08 on the intoxilyzer breath machine.
How do I get a copy of the Police Reports?
Some Florida DUI Lawyers have knowledge of the highly technical issues covered in this article and can establish your defense against DUI charges. Florida treats DUI as a serious charge. A conviction usually results in a nearly permanent entry on your driving record, even if you do not have a Florida driver's license. the record of this conviction cannot be sealed or expunged to prevent others from uncovering this event in your life.
You need a serious defense.A Board Certified Criminal Trial Lawyer in Hillsborough Tampa Florida , can be your attorney and defend you against drunk driving charges and other traffic offenses. A Dui Dwi lawyer to defend against this charge is available right now. Please submit your case information on a DUI in Florida or in the Tampa Bay Area, Florida. For a free case analysis and in-office in person evaluation.
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Law Office of W. F. "Casey" Ebsary, Jr.
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