crime

Three Factors That Could Influence A Boating And Drinking Case

Drinking and driving is not reserved only for driving a car. There can be cases where a defendant is arrested and charged with boating and driving. This is a common type of case in Florida, where there are plenty of spots to hit the water, so it is important to understand the charges. There are some similarities between a DUI and a BWI, but there are also some factors that are unique only to BWI that might help with your defense.

Some of the typical defense that are raised in DUI cases have to do with the breath test results, such as challenging the way the test was administered or showing that there was another substance in the driver’s system that gave off a false positive. A BWI has unique factors that might lead an officer to believe you have been boating and drinking, such as:

  • Having spent too much time in the sun, which can affect your body’s physical properties.
  • Not drinking enough water while out in the sun, which can lead to dehydration.
  • Being a novice boater, which might mean you are driving erratically.
  • Choppy waters, which can lead to becoming sea sick.

If you are facing a drinking while boating charge, let us help. The type of defense you use could be similar to a DUI case, but with additional evidence needed. Our team of experienced DUI and BWI defense attorneys knows how to develop a defense for this special type of case that will fit the facts of your case. The possible punishments for BWI are not as harsh as those that accompany a DUI, but can still be disruptive to your life. You can also take steps before going out on a boat, like designating a driver. The risks of danger are high when water is involved without involving alcohol, but if drinking is part of your boating experience it may just pay off to have someone else take the wheel. Even so, we understand not all plans go as predicted, and are here to help you if you have been charged with drinking while boating.

If you have questions about BUI and DUI defense, call our office for answers. Call an experienced criminal defense attorney in Stuart and the Treasure Coast. Your first visit is a free initial consultation.

 

Four Things To Do For A DUI Arrest

A DUI is a serious matter with serious consequences. You can lose your driver’s license, go to jail, and pay hefty fines. The loss of your driver’s license is automatic upon arrest, but can be fought. In most cases, especially first time offender cases, you can obtain a limited license and allowed to drive for limited purposes. But to get that type of license you have to act fast, because there is a short time period for asking for a limited license and if you miss it, you miss out on the opportunity. There are other things you will need to do if you are arrested for DUI, and doing these things can set the stage for a successful case.

Four things to do if you are arrested for DUI include the following:

  • Stay calm, which will help you to think things through before speaking or acting. When you make quick decisions you are more likely to say or do something that can be used against you later. But if you are able to keep your wits about you, you stand a better chance of keeping damaging information to yourself, and this can really help your case down the road.
  • Stay silent, except to give short and direct answers. The temptation to try and talk your way out of the arrest may be great, but most times when this happens you only end up digging a deeper hole. You do have the right to remain silent and if your answers would jeopardize your freedom then you should exercise this right. But if you can give a short answer without elaborating, it is okay to do so.
  • As soon as you are able to, call an attorney. Hopefully you are able to bond out of jail quickly, and once you do you need to clear your head and call an attorney for help. Calling an attorney while the facts are fresh and you are clear headed will allow you to give an accurate account of the facts, without overlooking important details.
  • One fact that will play a role in your defense is whether you submitted to the breath test, or declined. If you did take the test it is crucial to tell your attorney all of the details. A lot of DUI defendants mistakenly believe breath test results cannot be challenged, but the plain truth is that these results are challenged all the time. There are several objections you can make, and when done properly a breath test challenge can lead to a dismissal or a reduced charge.

Our goal is to design a strategy that meets your needs. Our team of DUI defense attorneys is experienced and reviewing the facts and developing a defense that fits those facts. Call us today to learn more.

If you have been arrested for DUI, call our office for help today. Contact us today schedule an appointment with an experienced criminal defense attorney in Stuart and the Treasure Coast. The first visit is a free initial consultation.

Five Steps To Every DUI Case

Being pulled over and charged with DUI is no fun. But even when you have made the best of plans for a safe ride home, things happen and you might get pulled over after having a few drinks. Everyone reacts differently in this situation, and the way you respond might impact your case down the road, but the blueprint of how the case proceeds is typically the same for all cases. Of course there are always cases with extraordinary circumstances, but by and large every DUI case takes the same path. And, knowing what that path is can help you to prepare an effective defense and maybe even save your right to drive.

Five steps to every DUI case include:

  • A traffic stop and an arrest. At the time of the traffic stop; which can be for any good reason such as speeding, running a light, weaving in and out of traffic, or any other suspicious driving pattern, if the officer suspects the driver has been drinking the driver can be asked to submit to a breath test. This is the normal protocol on the side of law enforcement, but each driver reacts differently to this request. Whether you refused to take the breath test, or submitted to it will affect the type of defense you offer. We can help in either case because we have experience defending both instances.
  • Your first court appearance after bonding out of jail will be the arraignment. This is the time to advise the Court if you will be entering a guilty or not guilty plea.
  • Depending on how to plan to plea, after the plea is entered it is necessary to investigate your case further and make any motion with the Court to keep certain evidence out of the Courtroom. Once all of your pretrial motions have been decided on by the Court, you will be in a good position to begin negotiations with the prosecuting attorney.
  • During the negotiation phase your attorney will argue for the most lenient outcome, whether that is probation or an outright dismissal of the charges depends on the evidence in your case.
  • Sentencing is the last part of your case and this comes after an agreement is made through skilled negotiations with the prosecution, or after a trial to the Court. Most first time offenders can expect to be sentenced to a term of probation, and if successful on that probation the charges will be reduced.

It is also important to remember that there is an administrative part to your case as well, and you will have to act fast regarding this portion of the case or you might not be permitted to drive. The administrative portion of your case deals with the revocation of your license, and if not challenged within ten days from the date of arrest you will not be granted any driving privileges. But if you do seek a review within those first ten days, a first time offender is likely to be granted a provisional license so they can still go to school and work.

If you have questions about DUI defense, contact us for answers. Call an experienced criminal defense attorney in Stuart and the Treasure Coast. Your first visit is a free initial consultation.

A Three Point Explanation Of Trump’s Immigration Order

The moment Donald Trump took office he began signing Executive Orders. This type of action seemed shocking to most of the nation (but perhaps not unexpected) in that many of the orders appear to revoke important rights. One of the most hotly debated Orders is the one regarding immigration and the acceptance of refugees into the United States. Trump has long said he will take steps to keep the country’s borders safe, and along with his proposal to build a wall along the Mexican border, attempting to keep refugees out of the country appear to be how he plans to achieve this goal. But not everyone agrees with his tactics, and the flurry of pen marks put to Executive Orders in the first few days of Trump’s Presidency has caused not only uproar, but a lot of confusion.

If you are wondering what type of impact Trump’s immigration order will have, here is a three point explanation:

  • Refugee resettlement into America has been suspended for four months under the Order. Entry into the country by predominantly Muslim nations has also been suspended for three months.
  • If a person falling into this category is already in the United States and decides to leave, the Department of Homeland Security has said those individuals will be granted re-entry. However, this could be decided on an individual basis and not a blanket rule covering everyone who fits these criteria.
  • The number of refugees who will be allowed to enter the country has been decreased from a previously allowed number of 110,000 to 50,000.

The legality of this particular Executive Order is unknown in some respects, but settled in other areas. For example, the President does have the authority to decide issues on refugee entry, but may lack the power to deny immigration based on an applicant’s nationality. Our country is one of checks and balances, to ensure no one person holds all the power. Whether any of Trump’s initiatives will be challenged remains to be seen, and some may be fearful of their job security if they try. After making statements that attorneys for the Justice Department would not offer the President a defense in the event his orders were questioned in Court, Trump removed Sally Yates as the country’s attorney general. Amidst all this uncertainty, you need legal advice you can count on when you have a question. Whether your question has to do with immigration or some other act, you can rest assured our office stands ready to help.

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If you have questions about criminal defense, contact us for answers. Call an experienced criminal defense attorney in Stuart and the Treasure Coast. Your first visit is a free initial consultation.

Three DUI Myths Explained

Being arrested for DUI is scary, and most people don’t know where to turn for help after the arrest. There is a lot of information out there available, but not all of it is reliable. And, when you are dealing with your freedoms and your right to drive, getting accurate advice is a must. In order to put your mind at ease, allow us to explain some of the more popular myths out there about what happens if you get a DUI.

Three DUI myths to watch out for include:

  • Believing you will not be able to drive again: while it is true that your license is taken when you are arrested for DUI, you do have the chance to ask for it back or for a limited license. The key here is to act fast and make your request within ten days of being arrested. If you are a first time offender the chances are high that you will be granted a provisional license, and given a limited right to drive.
  • Believing the breath test results: science can be pretty cool, but it can also be pretty intimidating if you don’t know how it works. Not all scientific tests are fail proof, and when a mistake in the testing procedure is made it can cause the results to be unreliable. This is true for high school and college level coursework, and is also the case with a DUI breath test. There are several challenges you can make to the validity of the test result, and we can help.
  • Believing you will face the maximum punishment possible: a good defense attorney will be able to minimize the impact the consequence of being arrested for DUI can have, and in many cases a defendant is able to stay out of jail while serving their sentence. This is done through an agreement to go on probation, and does require you to do certain things during the probationary term, but for many DUI defendants the terms are acceptable.

Rather than prejudge your case, let us help you. We have experience defending DUI cases of all sorts and can assist with your case too. If you have been arrested for DUI, call one of our DUI defense attorneys today to learn more.

If you have questions about DUI defense, contact us for answers. Call an experienced criminal defense attorney in Stuart and the Treasure Coast. Your first visit is a free initial consultation.

Three Ways To Save Your License If You Get More Than One DUI

Every DUI case involves the criminal charges of driving under the influence, and the loss of your driver’s license. This two part type of case is different from most criminal matters, and deserves specialized attention in order to get a good result. If you have been arrested and charged with DUI before, it should come as no surprise that with each new case against you, your defense has to be stronger and more focused on what matters most. For the majority of DUI defendants, the two most important things are to stay out of jail and to stay on the road. Experience counts when you are facing any type of case, but with a subsequent DUI it is wise to seek counsel that concentrates their efforts in this type of case. With the help of a seasoned DUI defense attorney, you can have a good outcome for first time and even subsequent offender cases.

If you have had more than one DUI case filed against you, here are some things to know about how to save your driver’s license. The three ways that work most often in repeat offender cases are:

  • Going to DUI school or a drug/alcohol treatment program. It is not uncommon to be ordered to attend and successfully complete these types of courses with subsequent cases, and often times this requirement is made as part of what you must do in order to get a hardship license to drive.
  • It is likely that you will be placed under the supervision of the Special Supervision Services program. The supervision will last as long as your license is revoked, and you will have to do the things asked of you during this time in order to get a good recommendation.
  • If you obtain a favorable recommendation from the Special Supervision Services staff assigned to your case, you will have a better shot at getting a hardship license and maintaining at least a limited right to drive.

Meeting these three requirements can be difficult, and it takes a lot of hard work. But with our help, you can be successful in your request for a hardship license. We know how important it is to be able to drive, and work diligently on your behalf to keep you on the road. Call us today to find out more.

If you have questions about how to keep your license with a subsequent DUI, contact us for answers. Call an experienced criminal defense attorney in Stuart and the Treasure Coast. Your first visit is a free initial consultation.

Five DUI FAQ’s, And What You Need To Know Now

If you are arrested for DUI you need to act fast to preserve your right to drive and to minimize the impact the criminal case has on your life. This includes calling a skilled DUI defense attorney for help right away; because the clock starts ticking the minute you are given a DUI ticket. While every case is unique, there are some things that every DUI defendant should do as their first few steps, these are explained below.

Five of the most frequently asked questions about DUI cases, and what you need to know now include:

  • Will I lose my license? When you are arrested for DUI your driver’s license is taken, and you are given a paper license to use temporarily…very temporarily. In order to have your driving privileges reinstated in full or in part, you have to make a written request for administrative review of the revocation within ten days of arrest. Failure to make the request will result in loss of your license for a period of time.
  • Will I have to have an interlock device installed in my car? This is a common requirement of probation, for many first time offenders. Whether you will have to have one depends on the terms of your probation, and the negotiations leading up to those terms.
  • Is the breath test result reliable? No! Challenging the breath test results should be a top priority for all DUI defendants, because there are instances where the results are wrong. Many factors play into whether the result in your case is reliable, and it takes a full investigation into the particular facts of your case to make this determination.
  • Will I be fired for getting a DUI? Your employer should not fire you for being arrested for DUI, but that does not mean it has not happened. One thing to look for here is whether your job duties require you to drive, and if so the status of your license given the fact you have received a DUI. We understand the need to continue working, and can address this issue with you in more detail during an in office visit.
  • Will I have to go to jail? Most first time offenders are able to escape a jail sentence, but that does not mean it is not possible. In order to protect your freedoms, put us to work for you today.

A DUI can have serious consequences, but it is not the end of the world. We have helped other people in this situation before, and have the experience and know-how to help you too. Call us today for more information.

If you have questions about DUI defense, call our office for answers. Call an experienced criminal defense attorney in Stuart and the Treasure Coast. Your first visit is a free initial consultation.

 

DUI

Three Things To Know About DUI Defense

It is not hard to get information in today’s cyber world. A well worded search online will quickly lead you to story after story about whatever topic you are researching, and the information you find can be helpful. But before you rely on a magazine article or newspaper report, it can be beneficial to confirm your findings with a professional. This is especially true if you are looking for tips on what happens if you are involved in a legal proceeding. While the law does allow you to represent yourself, there are a lot of pitfalls to taking this approach. Nearly every type of legal case has a certain process that must be followed, and if you are unaware of the local rules and procedures you can end up hurting your case more than you are helping yourself.

With a DUI case, it is likely the information you can get your hands on easily will focus on three main topics. In order to know what you need to do, here are three things to know about DUI defense:

  • Breath tests: most DUI arrests are the product of a breath test result that shows the driver was operating the car while over the legal limit. Unfortunately, many drivers believe these results are conclusive and cannot be challenged. However, that is not the case. It is not uncommon for breath test results to be wrong, and many factors should be considered when you are looking at your results. It is a good idea to question the testing procedure, investigate whether the machine was working properly, and ask whether the person administering the test has been properly trained to do so.
  • Entering a plea: many cases are resolved by agreeing to enter a certain plea, in exchange for going on probation. This sounds scary to a lot of people; because they are not sure they can comply with the terms of probation. But depending on what is negotiated on your behalf, you might be surprised. Most cases can be negotiated to terms you can live with, as long as you are willing to put forth a little effort.
  • The range of punishment: depending on whether you are first time offender or this is a subsequent DUI, the range of punishment will vary. Most first time offenders are not punished with the maximum possible, which is good news.

 

When you have some basic information about how to defend a DUI case, you can make a choice that works for you. Let us help you understand the charges against you, and come up with a defense strategy that makes sense.

If you have questions about DUI defense, call our office for answers. Call an experienced criminal defense attorney in Stuart and the Treasure Coast. Your first visit is a free initial consultation.

The Number One Way To Get Out Of Jail

If you have ever been arrested, you know what it takes to get out of jail. The process can be long and tedious, and it can also be costly. Many times, bail is too much for the ordinary person to stomach paying, or the funds are just simply not available. When bail is set, you have the option of going to a bondsman for help, and that will cut down on the amount it costs to get you out of jail. But if that does not work, you might have to take other action.

The number one way to get out of jail is of course to post bond, but what can you do if you are not able to come up with the money to pay your way out from behind bars? Here are some things to think about:

  • You can ask your attorney to request the Court set a lower bond amount.
  • If your offense is non-violent, or you are a first time offender, a skilled defense attorney may be able to convince a Judge that the amount of bail is too high for the type of case.
  • You can look into programs that are approved by the Court, and allow for your release without having to post bond. In these instances, you will be under Court supervision and required to check in regularly.

The problems associated with not being able to pay your way out of jail range from missing work, to potentially losing your job or having your kids find a relative to live with while you are behind bars. This seems unfair when the crime is not violent, as is the case in most misdemeanors and traffic violations. One of the most common misdemeanor crimes people are arrested for is DUI, and when those same people have to sit in jail because they can’t afford the high bond amount, no legitimate purpose if served. For help getting out, and staying out of jail, call our office. We will listen to your concerns and come up with solutions that meet your needs while fitting within the strict requirements of your budget.

If you have questions about bonding out of jail, call our office for answers. Call an experienced criminal defense attorney in Stuart and the Treasure Coast. Your first visit is a free initial consultation.

 

The Number One Requirement For A Valid Traffic Stop

If you have ever been driving over the speed limit, and had a police cruiser pull up behind you, your first instinct is to tap the brakes to slow your speed. If you are successful, you might avoid being pulled over and being written a speeding ticket. But, if not, you run the risk of receiving a citation if the officer decides to have you pull to the side of the road. If you have been drinking, things can quickly escalate, and you can be arrested and charged with DUI. Neither of these seem like fun, and both can cost you your time and money.

But unlike a routine traffic stop, a DUI requires something more than being paced by a police officer, or having a radar read out of your speed. In order to be charged with DUI during a traffic stop, the stop itself must be valid. The number one requirement for a valid traffic stop is that the officer have reasonable suspicion to make the stop. Without being able to articulate a reasonable ground for having pulled you over, the traffic stop itself can be considered invalid. If that is the case, anything that transpired thereafter is subject to attack. Some of the ways an officer can establish reasonable suspicion include:

  • Verbal testimony of your speed or other driving pattern, such as weaving in and out of traffic to changing lanes without signaling.
  • Claiming you failed to obey a traffic signal or sign, such as by running a red light or rolling through a stop sign.
  • Driving too slowly can also be cause to pull you over, and depending on what the officer observes during the stop, there may be reason to question you about your activities prior to taking the wheel.

If you have been pulled over for a traffic violation, and during that stop were arrested for DUI, call us for help. Our team of DUI attorneys knows what to expect from the police when they are trying to establish cause for the stop. We also know what to look for when developing a defense to a DUI charge, whether it be by attacking the breath test results or by challenging other aspects of the arrest. We have helped others handle their traffic and DUI cases, and can help you too.

If you have questions about DUI defense, call our office for answers. Call an experienced criminal defense attorney in Stuart and the Treasure Coast. Your first visit is a free initial consultation.

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