A 38-year-old woman was recently arrested and charged with DUI in Jacksonville after she allegedly crashed into a fence while carrying five children.
DUI can be one of the most embarrassing charges for which a person can be charged because of the stigma attached. Yet, it is the most common charge a person can face. It is perhaps the least sophisticated crime — there is rarely any planning to commit it. But while most people face a misdemeanor offense, it’s penalties are far more severe than other misdemeanor offenses, such as theft crimes or even forms of assault.Jacksonville DUI Defense Lawyers have seen careers ruined, family situations become more stressful and spirits drained after an arrest, which is no proof a crime has been committed. But fighting the charge and coming either to a plea resolution or a not guilty verdict at trial can go a long way toward clearing a person’s name and restoring order to their life.
An experienced lawyer can help fight the charges based on the facts, police action or inaction, witness credibility and many aspects of the case. A person facing a DUI charge is usually shell shocked at the prospect of being thrust into the criminal justice system and they don’t know what to expect. But consulting with an attorney should be the first thing a person does in order to preserve their rights and give them the best opportunity at defending the charges.
According to the newspaper, the woman blew a tire and swerved into a fence near a trailer park after hitting a curb on 103nd. St. An off-duty police lieutenant working security nearby saw the car and realized the woman was driving with five child passengers.
The article states that when the off-duty officer ran up to the vehicle, he knocked on the vehicle and a woman opened the door, spilling an alcoholic drink on her shirt and onto the ground. Inside, there were five children, ages 5 to 15. The witness described the woman as unsteady as she stood and nearly fell over as they were talking.
The children told police the woman started to weave and hit the curb. Some tried to grab the wheel to try to prevent a crash, but the driver allegedly swerved on purpose and lost control of the car, striking a fence. The woman now faces charges of DUI causing damage, leaving the scene of an accident and possession of an open container of alcohol.
What many people don’t consider are the severe penalties that DUI convictions bring. According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, the penalty even for a first-time offender can result in fines of up to $2,000, up to nine months in jail included in up to a year on probation, completion of a DUI school course, 50 hours of community service, vehicle impoundment and possible installation of an ignition interlock device.
Those are steep penalties for a crime that wasn’t orchestrated and didn’t involve injury to people, loss of money or other crimes that involve victims. Because of that, fighting the charges aggressively is the only option.
The Forbess Law Firm has been aiding clients who face criminal charges in Jacksonville for more than a decade and are here to provide aggressive criminal defense to anyone accused of a crime. If you or a loved one require a Jacksonville criminal defense lawyer, contact our firm today. We are available through our website or by calling us at 904-634-0900.
More Blog Entries:
Breath Testing in Jacksonville DUI Cases Must Be Challenged for Accuracy: July 20, 2011
Field Sobriety Testing in Jacksonville DUI Cases Can Be Beaten: July 19, 2011
DUI arrest follows wild ride for 5 children on Jacksonville street, by Dan Scanlan, The Florida Times-Union