Should You Plead Guilty to a DUI?A DUI (Driving Under the Influence) case is a very severe driving offense under Florida law. DUI cases are proved by an impairment of “normal faculties” or unlawful blood alcohol content or breath levels of 0.08 or above, whilst driving or in control of the vehicle. A driver who is deprived of these faculties because of drugs or alcohol, even if the drugs were prescribed, could be found guilty of a DUI offense. Even if you are facing a DUI conviction, it is important you act as quickly as possible, considering specific deadlines concerning a DUI crime.
If you or a loved one have been arrested for driving under the influence, contact The Ticket Lawyers as soon as possible. Our team is dedicated and possess a wealth of knowledge and experience in dealing with DUI cases such as your own. It is always best to have an experienced attorney on your side. Call us today using our phone number (855)-323-8488.
Should you Plead Guilty to DUI?
Even if you believe you are guilty, it is always best not to plead so, as there may be reasons you might not know at the time that a criminal defense attorney could become layer aware of that can prove your innocence. It is important for all defendants to be aware that a DUI case can be won; it isn’t a definite guilty sentence! A DUI case can be won through the following circumstances:
- If the traffic stop was conducted properly – A DUI charge begins with the traffic stop. Any evidence obtained in the stop could’ve been unlawfully obtained where the stop was improperly conducted. If there was no probable cause to stop, detain, or arrest you for a DUI charge, then the evidence and case as a whole could be subject to dismissal.
- If the police officer read the defendant their rights – If a police officer does not read you your right to remain silent, then any information you gave to authorities from this point will not be admissible in court.
- If the breathalyzer was properly maintained and calibrated – Improper maintenance and calibration of a breathalyzer can lead to that evidence being inadmissible. If the officer using it wasn’t properly trained, then this can question the validity of this evidence too.
- Issues with the field sobriety test – A field sobriety test is not always an accurate indication of inebriation. Studies have instead shown that such tests range from 65-77% accuracy in detecting impairment.
For these reasons, pleading guilty to your DUI charges can be unadvisable. There are always options your DUI defense lawyer could take to help your case. DUI cases can be unpredictable, so always consult a DUI lawyer before taking a guilty plea deal. Contact The Ticket Lawyers today if you’re facing a DUI conviction to better understand your case and what we can do for you.
What Happens if I Plead Not Guilty to a DUI?
If you decide to plead not guilty to your DUI charge, then your case will be taken to court, and you’ll face prosecutors. A civil case is filed against you with the DMV, as well as a criminal case, because of this, there are several procedures involved in average Florida DUI cases. This includes:
- First appearance – This is a hearing held in jail within 24 hours of your arrest.
- Arraignment – This is a formal hearing where you will be charged with a DUI and will have to make your plea of not guilty or guilty.
- Pretrial conference – This is a hearing scheduled several weeks after the arraignment to update the judge on the case’s progression. A prosecutor could make you an offer here to avoid trial.
- Filing motions – The defense tends to request evidentiary hearings to be held on the day of your trial. This is where a lot of evidence is given.
- Trial – A lot of DUI cases are resolved before trial, but all defendants have a constitutional right to a trial by jury. The government prosecutors will aim to prove you’re guilty. If you’re found not guilty, you’ll leave the trial with no conviction; if you’re guilty, you’ll receive a sentence then and there.
Therefore, because of how complex DUI cases can become, it is important you have a DUI lawyer on your side. A DUI defense lawyer will be able to examine your case and find any evidence that could be used in your favor, such as a police officer unfairly conducting the traffic stop without probable cause or a malfunctioning breathalyzer. Contact The Ticket Lawyers today to see what our team can do for you.
Do you go to Jail After DUI Arraignment?
As mentioned previously, a DUI arraignment follows your first appearance. Here your attorney will enter a notice of appearance; this tells the State that you are denying the DUI charges and will be pleading not guilty. If you have pleaded not guilty, you will not go to jail after this; you have to go through further proceedings. You will not go to jail unless you are found guilty at your final trial and are sentenced with a punishment of such.
If you plea guilty or no contest at this point, you will be sentenced here. ‘No contest’ means that you have accepted the sentence but have not admitted guilt. Under the DUI statute, a deferred sentence is not allowed. Once there is an admission of guilt or no contest, the offender must receive and carry out their sentence. Meaning if you’re going to be sentenced to jail, your jail sentence will be imposed immediately. A handful of judges allow a “turn-in” date, meaning you report to jail on a named later date, but this is rare. It is more common that you will be taken into custody immediately at your arraignment if you admit guilt or claim no contest.
If you require legal representation at your arraignment, contact The Ticket Lawyers today. Our team is experienced in dealing with cases like yours and will be able to design a legal strategy that leads you with the best possible outcome.
Can a First Offence DUI be Dismissed?
If you are facing a DUI case, it is important you act as quickly as possible. If this is your first offense, no one is hurt, and no property was damaged; there is a possibility that an experienced criminal defense DUI lawyer could get your charge reduced or dismissed entirely. If this is your second or third charge, then it is highly unlikely your DUI charge will be entirely dismissed.
Do not plead guilty in such a scenario as pleading guilty will often result in an automatic conviction and sentence. There are technical defenses that could be used by a defense DUI lawyer to try and dismiss your charges once it goes to trial. The approach that best suits your case will depend on your circumstances. It is best to have a lawyer on your side who is experienced in Florida DUI law and will give you your best chance at having your case dismissed once your case is taken to court. Contact The Ticket Lawyers today to understand what our lawyers can do for you.
How many DUI Cases are Dismissed in Florida?
According to the Legal Dictionary, there are no centralized statistics regarding the amount of dismissed cases in Florida as a whole. However, there are some specific cities. For instance, in Orlando, roughly 40% of DUI cases are reduced to a reckless driving charge or are instead dismissed entirely. It is important to keep in mind that this number will always drop significantly if this is the second or third charge.
Call The Ticket Lawyers Today!
A DUI conviction can be extremely detrimental and can lead to a range of issues further down the line, often revolving around employment. Therefore, it is important to consider hiring an experienced defense attorney as soon as possible. Contact The Ticket Lawyers law firm today to discuss your case and so that you can better understand your options, i.e., whether or not you should plead guilty, and if so, what can be done for you.
Our law firm offers a free no-obligation consultation with our dedicated DUI attorneys who will be able to go over the details of your case and examine a potential defense strategy. Call us today on (855)-323-8488 to get your legal journey with us started.