| Read Time: 2 minutes | Criminal Defense

How to Stop a Friend from Drinking and Driving?

“Friends don’t let friends drive drunk,” a slogan of the Ad Council in the 1980s, has been used for comedy parities over and over again, but none the less holds a truth. There are a number of strategies to use when trying to stop a friend from drinking and driving. Nonetheless, we cannot always be there to stop our friends from getting behind the wheel after drinking. If you have a friend that has been charged with a DUI, urge them to speak to an experienced DUI defense lawyer at Moses & Rooth to insure their best defense against driver’s license suspension, fines, and jail time. Ways to Prevent a Friend from Drinking and Driving Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) give the following tips when trying to stop a friend from drinking and driving: Be non-confrontational; Get the friend a cab; Place them on a bus or other form of public transportation; Find a sober driver; Remember that the person is drunk and speaking slower may be useful; Explain that you care for them and don’t want to see them get hurt; Have them sleep over; Enlist a friend to help convince them to not drive; and Get the friend’s keys. MADD also suggest that if all else fails to call the cops because it is better for your friend to be arrested than to be injured, injure another, kill, or be killed because they choose to drink and drive. Legal Consequences of a DUI It is also important that your friend knows the legal repercussions if they choose to drink and drive. According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, a DUI conviction can result in fines from $500 to $5,000, 50 hours of community service or an additional fine of $10 per community service hour, probation up to one year, incarceration from six months to five years, license suspension up to one year, vehicle impoundment, and an ignition interlock can be issued. The severity of the punishment depends on a number of things, such as blood alcohol level and if previous offenses have occurred. A friend that is convicted of a DUI causing personal injury or property damage is guilty of a first degree misdemeanor and face up to $1,000 in fines or up to one year in prison. A driver causing serious bodily injury while driving under the influence may be convicted of a third degree felony and face up to $5,000 in fines and/or five years in prison. A driver causing a death while driving under the influence may be convicted of a second degree felony and face up to $10,000 in fines and/or 15 years in prison. If the driver leaves the scene of the accident the driver may face a first degree felony and 30 years in prison. Stopping a friend from drinking and driving is the best outcome. However, if your friend has been charged with a DUI, encourage them to seek the advice of the experienced DUI defense attorneys at Moses and Rooth in central Florida to fight on their behalf. Have your friend contact us today so we can help them put their DUI charge behind them.

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Drunk Driving

Justin Bieber goes to trial for Florida DUI

Justin Bieber, who has risen to fame as a pop star out of Canada, was pulled over and arrested in Miami Beach earlier this year. Police said that he was driving under the influence, and he is now set to go to trail for those charges. The arrest happened on January 23, and the young singer was just 20 years old at the time. Bieber was not the only performer who was named by police in the case. Allegedly, there was an R&B singer in another vehicle near him, and the police stated that they thought that the two cars were illegally racing. The other singer was also given DUI charges. Both he and Bieber decided that they would plead that they were not guilty of those accusations. Police did take a blood alcohol reading for Beiber, and he was not over the legal limit in the state of Florida. This would mean that he could not face more than a misdemeanor charge. However, the authorities also stated that they found evidence that he had taken drugs. On top of that, Bieber was given charges for resisting arrest, though he was not violent, and he faces charges for driving with a license that had already expired. Some sources have indicated that it is not likely that he will have to face penalties for these charges, though, as they expect him to move forward with a plea deal that would allow the charges outside of the DUI charge to drop. Bieber’s appearance in court could have come sooner, according to some reports, but a judge for the case was trying to get him to do a public service announcement aimed at telling others, including his fans, not to drive under the influence. His lawyers were against this, and arguing through the details allegedly delayed the case. Individuals who have been charged with a DUI, whether they are famous or not, should know what rights they have under state laws and what options they have for how they can enter a plea. Source: Source: WJLA, “Justin Bieber’s DUI trial to start Monday,” No author given, July 7, 2014

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Drunk Driving

Police officer arrested for possible prescription DUI offense

A police officer has been taken into custody on charges of drunk driving in Florida. The officer, who is employed by the Daytona Police Department, was arrested in the very same city after she lost control of her personal vehicle and crashed it into a ditch. Fortunately, neither she nor anyone else suffered injury in the incident, but the Mustang she was driving was damaged on its left side. The crash and arrest occurred on a recent Thursday evening at approximately 11 p.m. According to the arrest report, the woman failed to negotiate a turn. When officers arrived on scene, the allegedly woman smelled of alcohol and was walking unsteadily. Two witnesses also concurred according to police reports, saying that they saw the woman in a gas station not far from where the accident occurred. They said that she appeared to be affected by an intoxicating substance. Police say that when they asked woman what happened, she said that she missed her exit. Reportedly, she also admitted to drinking two alcoholic beverages and taking a pharmaceutical drug for shoulder pain. This Florida police officer has now been placed on administrated leave while police continue their investigations. Indeed, a DUI arrest can be extremely detrimental for a public servant of the law. Regardless of one’s professional occupation, the consequences of a DUI arrest (even prior to conviction) can be life-altering. Fortunately, there may be many explanations for why an individual appeared to be inebriated at the time of an accident. In cases of prescription DUI, for example, the accused individual may have suffered an adverse, unplanned reaction to a prescription drug. In certain cases, individuals may be able to defend themselves successfully against the DUI charges in court. Source: Click Orlando, “Daytona Beach police officer arrested on DUI charge” Daniel Dahm, Jun. 20, 2014

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| Read Time: < 1 minute | Drunk Driving

Woman fails field sobriety tests, arrested for DUI

A 28-year-old woman, who two years ago, was charged with burning down “The Senator” has been arrested once again. The Senator is a large bald cypress tree in Longwood, Florida, that was a focal point for tourists. At a majestic 118-foot tall and 18 feet in diameter, it was considered one of the largest of its kind in the world. The woman allegedly lit a fire in the tree so she would have light to take her illegal drugs. Once the Senator caught, it burned for hours until it finally crumpled to the ground. The woman is still facing charges for this crime. However, this time her arrest was for a DUI charge. The woman was driving wildly on U.S. Highway 17-92 in Maitland, Florida. She allegedly squealed her wheels while making a wide turn onto a street, after which she cut another vehicle off. An officer then pulled her over. The officer administered several field sobriety tests, which the woman failed according to his report. Her blood alcohol levels exceeded the legal limit by more than double. According to the officer’s report, the woman began to cry remorsefully on the way to the DUI center, while she relayed her part in burning down the Senator. This woman now must fight the DUI charges she is facing, as well as the other charges. DUI offenses are serious and can carry large fines and possibly even jail time. In addition, they can remain on one’s record, causing problems in the future. Because of the nature of her other case that is still pending, her legal advisor will need to ensure that she gets a fair and unbiased trial. Source: Orlano Sentinel, “Woman accused of burning down ‘Senator’ tree charged with DUI” Jeff Weiner, Mar. 02, 2014

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| Read Time: < 1 minute | Drunk Driving

When can a BAC below 0.08 percent lead to a DUI conviction?

American adults are often quite cautious about keeping their blood alcohol content (BAC) levels under control before attempting to operate motor vehicles. Failure to keep one’s BAC below the legal limit of 0.08 percent can lead to drunk driving charges, so it is imperative that any adult planning to drive after drinking waits long enough for the alcohol in his or her body to metabolize below that limit before getting behind the wheel of a car or truck. However, it is possible for drunk driving charges to result even when one’s BAC is below the legal limit of 0.08 percent. The general threshold of 0.08 percent BAC only applies when an adult driver has no prior convictions related to driving under the influence (DUI), is legally old enough to drink and does not seem impaired at BAC levels below 0.08 percent. When drivers are younger than 21 years of age, any alcohol detected in their system during a traffic stop can result in a DUI charge. This zero tolerance policy is enforced in order to discourage underage drinking and to hold young people accountable for choosing to drink any amount before attempting to operate a vehicle. Zero tolerance policies may also apply to persons formerly convicted of DUI offenses. However, thresholds for repeat offenders may vary from state to state. In addition, it is illegal to drive while impaired, no matter how little of a given drug or alcoholic beverage you have in your system. You may therefore be convicted of a DUI charge if you are visibly impaired while driving, even if the amount of alcohol or prescription drugs in your system does not exceed generally accepted BAC limits. Source: Findlaw Blotter, “BAC Below 0.08%? It Can Still Be a DUI,” Aditi Mukherji, Aug. 22, 2013

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