Jacksonville Residents Beware Of Drinking And Driving This Holiday Season

As Jacksonville and it’s citizens are gearing up for the holiday season, a time of celebration, joy, and memories made, the Florida Highway Patrol is gearing up their officers for the other memories made: traffic tickets and DUI Arrests. According to the New Port Richey Patch, the Florida Highway Patrol has made 67 arrests during traffic checkpoint operations.

According to the Patch, the Florida Highway Patrol organized the checkpoint on U.S. 19 in New Port Richey, lasting for around 6 hours, from 8pm to 2am. The plan was taken on by not only the State authorities but local highway patrol and county Sheriff’s departments. This checkpoint program was targeted and assertive in cutting down drinking and driving according to the Patch.

Jacksonville DUI crimes are very common, unfortunately, around the holidays. For some, it’s dipping into too much of the wine the family put out for Christmas; for others, it’s ringing in the new year with no memory of the last year. No matter what the particular reason is for the excessive libations, there are consequences to driving while intoxicated.

As Florida DUI laws are becoming more and more tough, there are some penalties and consequences one should consider before drunkenly putting the keys into the ignition:

– expensive court fines and fees
– license suspension/revocation
– DUI school enrollment
– up to 6 months in jail
– vehicle tow and impoundment
– ignition interlock installation and monthly access fees
– Diminished employer/employee relationship
– Family tensions
States are becoming more and more strict on what the legal limit is for driving impaired. In Florida, the maximum legal blood alcohol level a person can have for driving is 0.08. In the event that one’s blood alcohol level is above 0.15, the Court, subsequent to Florida Statute 316.193, is required to install an ignition interlock device.

An ignition interlock device’s main purpose is to make sure that the person convicted of the DUI is deterred from driving drunk again. The device forces the driver of the vehicle to give a breath sample before starting the vehicle. This breath sample must be at maximum 0.05. The device is also designed to force randomized testing while the car is running. These tests can be a major pain and hassle to one’s daily life.

Ignition interlock devices are quite costly. If one is required to have an ignition interlock device installed, one must pay a $12 interlock fee, a $70 installation fee, a $100 refundable deposit, a $5 insurance charge, and a $67.50 fee for monthly monitoring and calibration of the device.

Courts have discretion as to installing an ignition interlock device in one’s car if this is the first DUI conviction. Some Florida courts are more harsh on first time offenders than others. One in this situation should obtain an experienced Jacksonville DUI crimes attorney to make sure that one’s rights are protected and that one will be able to have an easier time dealing with the consequences of a DUI charge.

The Forbess Law Firm has been aiding clients who face criminal charges in Jacksonville for more than a decade and is here to provide aggressive criminal defense to anyone accused of a crime. If you or a loved one requires a Jacksonville criminal defense lawyer, contact our firm today. We are available through our website or by calling us at 904-634-0900.

Additional Sources:
67 Arrested During Traffic Checkpoint Operation, Alex Tiegen, The New Port Richey Patch
Section 316.193, The Florida Senate, The 2011 Florida Statutes

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