A recent story by News4Jax.com reports on the case of a woman involved in a three-vehicle accident recently in Nassau County that may have involved drunk driving.
According to the news report, a 24-year-old woman with two children was critically injured when a vehicle allegedly ran a stop sign and crashed into the vehicle the woman was in. Florida Highway Patrol reports they believe the crash was alcohol-related.
Jacksonville DUI Defense Attorneys understand the emotion involved in these types of cases, but one must remember that when charges are filed by law enforcement and prosecutors, the defendant has a right that all Americans have to a fair trial and an aggressive defense. And in DUI in Jacksonville, that involves many aspects of a case.
According to the news report, the family of the victim recently set up a Facebook event asking drivers to turn their lights on from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. one recent day. The event was backed by more than 2,700 people and included many comments.
While doctors told family members the woman shouldn’t have survived, she remains at Shands-Jacksonville Medical Center receiving care in critical condition.
In this case, Florida Highway Patrol troopers have charged the driver of the other vehicle, a 41-year-old man, with running a stop sign, careless driving, failing to stay in a lane and driving too fast for the conditions. The news article reports troopers are waiting on blood testing results before filing additional charges.
But the article doesn’t answer several questions, such as why the man was cited for charges like failing to stay in a lane and driving too fast for the conditions. Without a trooper as an eye witness, it would be difficult to determine how fast he was driving. And unless the weather was extremely bad, it would also be difficult to prove whether he was driving too fast for that street based on the weather. These are opinions. An independent accident investigation may be warranted.
DUI charges can be difficult because the charge itself carries with it a stigma. And legislators have gone out of their way to add strict penalties to this misdemeanor charge, far more than other misdemeanors.
According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, the penalties for DUI in Florida can vary, depending on many factors, such as the driver’s blood-alcohol level and whether there were injuries or a death involved.
In general, the penalties for even a first-time DUI conviction are as follows:
-Fines of $500 to $1,000
-50 hours of community service
-Probation of up to 1 year
-Jail time of up to 6 months
-10 days vehicle impound
-DUI School completion
While the fines are low, probation, DUI school, vehicle impoundment and possible community service require payments, making it a very expensive crime. The state estimates a DUI conviction can cost a defendant as much as $20,000!
But an arrest is simply an arrest and doesn’t provide any proof, despite the popular belief by many in public. That’s why hiring an experienced Jacksonville DUI Lawyer is critical to the defense of this crime and any other crime alleged by the state.
The Forbess Law Firm has been helping clients facing criminal charges in Jacksonville for more than a decade and are here to provide experienced criminal defense to anyone accused of a crime. If you or a loved one require a Jacksonville DUI defense lawyer, contact our firm today through our website. Or call us at 904-634-0900.