Florida Man Gets His Second DUI: Time To Cry?

second DUI florida Out of all the things you would possibly think to say or do when a police officer is about to arrest you for your second DUI (driving under the influence) charge, uttering the words “it’s my day to relax” and bursting into tears probably isn’t one of them. But that’s exactly what one man decided to do when he was arrested again for DUI in Florida.

The 32-year-old man was trying to buy alcohol at a local liquor store when the employees stopped him. Apparently he had been in 30 minutes prior to buy a pint of Sailor Jerry Rum, and when he returned to buy a pint of Captain Morgan, the employees refused him service. He even tried to send in a friend to buy the alcohol, but she was refused too.

Shortly after, an officer decided to stop him and discovered the drunk man with a female passenger and small child in a car seat in the back seat of the car. He failed his field sobriety test, refused to submit to the breathalyzer, and when the officer told him he was going to be arrested for DUI, he turned on the waterworks.

While crying the drunk driver explained that it was his second DUI charge and that he ruined his life. He might be telling the truth. A second DUI in Florida will net the man anywhere from nine months to one year in jail, he could pay up to $4,000 in fines, and he could lose his driver’s license for up to five years. His suspension could be reduced to one year, but he’ll have to drive with an ignition interlock device. He could also receive penalties for refusing the breathalyzer and possible penalties for child neglect.

Just a heads up to anyone drinking and driving in Florida: tears don’t work when you’re arrested for your second DUI. The Florida police have seen it all, and if you’d like to avoid a situation like this one, make the right choice and say no to drinking and driving.

Judge Deems Jail Only Way To Stay Safe From Repeat Drunk Drivers

repeat drunk drivers floridaNot everyone is in support of jail time for repeat drunk drivers. Some opponents don’t believe the time an offender may spend in jail adds up to anything more than a scare tactic. Even if a judge does order jail for a repeat drunk driver, they usually only spend a few months in county jail and rarely see the inside of an actual prison.

But one judge in South Florida is definitely in support of jail time for repeat drunk drivers, and has gone on record as saying that jail was the only and best option both for one offender and anyone who drives in Miramar, Florida. That offender, Jessica Crane, a 39-year-old repeat drunk driver, is currently being held without bond in a detention facility until she stands trail for vehicular homicide.

Crane is in jail because of a crash she caused while driving drunk. She was speeding down a street when she jumped a curb and crashed into a car. After striking a median, she sideswiped another car and drove away. Witnesses to the crash chased down Crane in their own vehicles and forced her off the road. They took her keys away and restrained her until police arrived.

The car she crashed into was occupied by pregnant Michelle James and her two children. The child Michelle was pregnant with delivered via caesarean because of her injuries, and the baby, Knight James, died after he was born.

When officers obtained Crane’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) three hours after the crash they found she was 177.5 percent over the legal limit with a BAC of .222. She was charged with a total of seventeen charges including DUI manslaughter, leaving the scene of a crash, two counts of DUI with serious bodily injury, and vehicular homicide.

The crash itself was severe enough that Crane’s time in jail is justified based on that alone, but also has two previous DUI convictions on her record, she was driving with a suspended license, and was also driving without her court ordered ignition interlock. That’s why the judge felt that there was no other option. To keep people safe on the roads of South Florida, she has to stay inside a jail cell.

This crash is just one more example of the problem Florida has with repeat drunk drivers, but it is reassuring to know that this drunk driver won’t be out on the roads anytime soon.

 

Dad Fights Back After Florida Drunk Driver Kills Daughter

Florida drunk driverDeath may be part of life, but when you lose someone young and just beginning his or her life, it’s hard to make any sense of it. It’s even harder when that person was lost due to someone’s irresponsible choice to drink and drive.

After one Florida drunk driver crashed into and killed a University of Central Florida student, her father decided to make it his mission to stop other families from losing someone the same way.

Keri Anne DeMott, a 20 year old, was driving on State Road 407 when 22-year-old Keith Pumphrey drove his car straight into her. His blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was .132, and when he was charged DeMott’s family found out that this wasn’t his first drunk driving conviction in the state.

Although he was sentenced to 15 years in prison for killing the young student, her father Bill DeMott doesn’t find any consolation in the sentence. He’s said that “prison can’t lock away the pain, and the courts can’t raise Keri from the dead.”

Like other family members of people killed by drunk drivers, DeMott had to find a way to channel his grief. He’s doing so by trying to enact change at the legal level, and he’s attempting to make it mandatory for Florida drunk drivers to install and use ignition interlock devices. Right now, interlocks are part of Florida driving under the influence (DUI) penalties, but they aren’t mandatory.

DeMott finds it unbelievable that repeat offenders don’t need to use the device, and he’d also like to tighten sentencing so that if someone else kills another person while drunk driving, they could get more jail time than the 15-year maximum sentence Pumphrey received.

He’s not the only one pushing for stricter DUI laws. There’s currently a bill on the table that would toughen Florida drunk driver laws and require first time offenders to install an ignition interlock if he or she is stopped for drinking and driving.

Laws could be changing, but in the meantime, DeMott keeps the memory of Kari alive by joining local police on Florida saturation patrols and Sector 2 Noise and Alcohol Patrol rides, where they target underage drinkers. It won’t bring her back, but it could save a life.

Florida Drunk Driver Drives On With Lethal Blood Alcohol Levels

florida drunk driver lethal blood alcoholNot every Florida drunk driver makes the news, but once in awhile there’s a case that’s publicized because it’s shocking, and by sharing it with the public, may just stop someone from making the same crazy decision to drink and drive.

It was definitely a crazy decision that got Stephen K. Allbritton’s name and photo splashed across news outlets on the Internet. It wasn’t just that he decided to binge drink and then drive his vehicle in Estero, Florida. It wasn’t just that he decided to do so with his two teenagers in the passenger seats of the vehicle. No, what was truly crazy was how much he drank before making the decision to drive his vehicle.

Allbritton was found passed out cold behind the wheel of his truck in the center turn lane of a road. When police arrived on the scene they tried to speak to him but he was unresponsive except for some mumbling. They called an ambulance to transport him, and when he arrived at the hospital he was given a blood test. That blood test indicated that Allbritton had a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.495. Five hours later they drew his blood again, and he was 0.333.

Let’s put that BAC into perspective. If someone had a bunch of drinks, blew into a breathalyzer, and received a BAC reading of .20, he or she would be considered extremely intoxicated. Odds are they would already be passing out at that stage.

If that person reaches 0.35 or 0.40, it’s very likely they are about to die from fatal alcohol poisoning. They would have slow or irregular breathing, would be very difficult to wake up and stay awake, and have a weak pulse. He or she would also have pale or bluish skin and may be vomiting after they pass out.

Those are symptoms anyone with that BAC would have, but this man was actually driving with that much alcohol in his system. It’s no wonder he was unresponsive and passed out at the wheel, and what’s even more surprising is that when the police read him his rights at the hospital, he denied drinking at all.

Fortunately police had the blood tests to back them up, and he was charged with drunk driving and felony child neglect. He also refused to take a breathalyzer test at the hospital so he was charged for that refusal. He’s still in jail while his case is pending.

You can take two things away from this Florida drunk driver. One, if you drink and drive and are arrested for it, there’s a chance that you too will end up on the news. And two, binge drinking and driving is a good way to end up dead. Alcohol poisoning could be the cause or you’ll end up in a crash that will kill you or someone else.

Either of those scenarios can’t seem appealing, so think before you drink. You don’t want to end up in the same situation as this Florida drunk driver.

What Happens If Don’t Install Your Ignition Interlock In Florida?

all offender ignition interlock lawThere are a lot of drunk drivers in Florida, and because the state requires anyone with a repeat drunk driving conviction to install an ignition interlock, there are a lot of ignition interlocks in Florida. Or, at least, there should be.

Interlocks are required for first time offenders if they are arrested with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .15 or higher. They will also be required to install an interlock if they have a minor under the age of 16 in their vehicle at the time of their arrest. First time offenders have to have an ignition interlock installed for six months.

Repeat offenders with a second conviction must have an ignition interlock for one year unless they were arrested with a BAC over .15 or with a minor in the vehicle. In that case, they’ll need to have an interlock for two years.

When a judge mandates that you install an interlock in Florida, you’ll have your driver’s license reinstated and you’ll receive a ‘P’ restriction on your license. By accepting your driver’s license back you agree that you won’t drive your vehicle without your device, and you agree that you’re on the hook for the penalties if you do.

If you’re caught driving without your ignition interlock, you could be arrested and your vehicle could be impounded. You may receive extra fines and you could lose your driver’s license again. You may also have time added onto your program, and that means you’ll have to drive even longer with that ‘P’ restriction.

That’s what could happen if you violate your program, but there are also some people who are ordered to install an interlock and don’t bother; people who continue to drive on a suspended license, and unless they’re stopped by police, they could easily crash and kill someone.

An ignition interlock works, but it only works if the offender installs one and drives clean and sober. Florida has begun looking into an all offender ignition interlock law; maybe at the same time they could bring in new laws to strengthen the violations for non-compliance.

 

 

 

Watch Out Florida Drunk Drivers: Police Are Ready For You

drunk drivers floridaHave you ever wondered how police officers spot and process a suspected drunk drivers? A person might be innocent until proven guilty, but most police officers know within minutes whether or not the person behind the wheel is drunk, and that’s thanks to driving under the influence (DUI) detection skills they’re taught before they head out on patrol.

Florida drunk drivers have even more of a reason to worry now that law enforcement have spent taken a course to make them more adept at catching drunk drivers. Held at the Florida Public Safety Institute, the course involved police officers attending a wet lab.

Wondering what a wet lab is? For the purpose of this training, it consisted of Florida attorneys, local law enforcement, and a few residents drinking alcohol for four hours.

During the wet lab the drinkers were monitored and served enough alcohol to get them to the point where they were just slightly over the legal limit of .08. They chose that threshold because those are the people who are most likely to be drunk drivers, they are most likely to be risk takers, and they are the hardest people to catch when they do drink and drive.

Officers in the lab assessed the drinkers and performed field sobriety tests with them, and the results weren’t surprising: they found all of the officers participating decided they would have arrested the drinkers. An added bonus to the experiment was that both the officers and the attorneys involved saw first hand how alcohol can affect everyone differently.

As for the participants, a few of them learned that they aren’t great at judging whether or not they are OK to drive after drinking. Some would have got behind the wheel because they thought they were fine to drive, and that decision could have serious consequences for them and everyone on the road with them.

Thanks to the DUI wet lab, Florida police are even more equipped to hit the road this summer and crack down on drunk drivers. If you’re driving in the state this summer, make sure you don’t drink before driving. It could be you they’re testing their new skills out on.

A Drunk Driving Arrest Can Happen To Anyone

drunk driving arrestIt’s all too easy to drink, drive, and get arrested, and a drunk driving arrest can happen to anyone. Your grandmother could have a few glasses of wine at a family dinner and she could be arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) on her way home. Your child could be arrested for DUI after a school dance. Even your spouse, someone you might never think would drink and drive, can be arrested for DUI if they make the mistake of getting behind the wheel after consuming any amount of alcohol.

A drunk driving arrest is pretty common, but that doesn’t mean it’s not shocking when you hear about celebrities, sports stars, and high profile people arrested for DUI. The only difference? When they are arrested, they make the news across the country.

Take the anti-DUI lawyer for example: David J. Maloney is a Florida lawyer who sues DUI offenders. He was out just after 3:30 am on Mother’s Day when he was pulled over in Pensacola Beach, Florida while driving his Lamborghini. The police determined that there was probable cause to arrest him for DUI, and he was released the next morning on $500 bail. Not surprisingly, the news on his arrest was carried on outlets online all over the USA.

It is sort of ironic that an anti-DUI lawyer would be charged with drunk driving, but he wasn’t the only high profile DUI lawyer in Florida that’s been arrested on a drunk driving charge. Warren Redlich, a DUI lawyer from Boca Raton who is popular for Fair DUI videos promoting no search at checkpoints, also received a drunk driving arrest when he was stopped and caught over the legal limit.

Even if their names aren’t splashed across the news, for most people it just takes one arrest and they’ll never drink and drive again. High profile people are the usually the same, and odds are high that everyone that’s had their name splashed across the media over the past few weeks won’t be tempted to put the keys in the ignition and drink and drive again.

Arrested For DUI? Here’s One More Thing To Worry About

arrested for DUIThere’s a lot that goes through your head right after you are arrested for DUI (driving under the influence). What’s going to happen now? Will I have to go to jail? How much will I owe in penalties? It’s a lot to take in, and a DUI isn’t the type of thing that’s over and done with quickly.

The problems that stem from receiving a DUI can last for a long time. Take your insurance premiums for example: you might think that once you pay for your ignition interlock and driver’s license reinstatement fee you’re off the hook as far as driving is concerned. Unfortunately for drunk drivers everywhere, that’s not exactly the case.

Take Florida for example: before you can reinstate your driver’s license you have to purchase FR-44 insurance. FR-44 means you have increased liability insurance for three years because your insurance company considers you high risk. They may not even want to reinstate your policy because of that DUI, and if they do, you’ll be looking at an increase in rates by up to 300%. Once you have the FR-44, you’ll have to maintain it for three years.

Arizona isn’t a state where you’d want to be arrested for DUI either. Along with other states they require you to have SR22 insurance. Instead of paying a standard premium of around $100 per month, you’ll have to pay three or four times that. Not only that, you’re on the hook for SR22 for as long as the state wants you to be. Just like the FR-44 in Florida, most states require that you have SR22 insurance for 3 years.

In addition to that hike in your insurance rates, some states will require you to pay for and attend DUI school. Plus, there’s also the cost of legal fees, maintaining your ignition interlock, and paying the penalties set out by your state.

It’s no picnic when you’re arrested for DUI, and the monetary costs can add up in a blink of an eye. The good news is you can keep your insurance, your driver’s license, and your money in the bank if you just make the choice to never get behind the wheel drunk.

DUI Wolf Pack Is On The Prowl In Florida

dui-wolf-packHave you ever heard of a DUI wolf pack (driving under the influence)? The general definition of a wolf pack is a group of people who hunt or attack together, and that’s exactly what police in Florida are doing when it comes to drunk drivers in the state.

Law enforcement in different Florida counties have been heading out on DUI wolf packs for several years. They’re designed to ‘educate drivers and create public awareness about the dangers of operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol and any chemical or controlled substances,’ and they’re done in addition to regular Florida DUI checkpoints in the state.

A recent DUI wolf pack was held in St.Petersburg, Florida. Police hit the road at 9 pm and were out in full force until 5 am. They targeted several counties, and just like wolves on the prowl, they watched the roadways and picked up and left different areas rapidly while monitoring traffic. These tactics are designed to ensure they find and take the maximum amount of drunk drivers off the road.

By all accounts, DUI wolf packs work, and they work well. Data has been released from a recent DUI wolf pack held in Pinellas County. They netted fifteen DUI suspects and laid four misdemeanor charges for people driving with suspended licenses.

They might travel in small packs, but Florida police have a few people along for the ride when they head out for these patrols. The St.Petersburg event was supported by the Tampa chapter of Remove Intoxicated Drivers (R.I.D). R.I.D’s is a national organization with chapters in many areas, and it is staffed by volunteers who, just like police, are dedicated to removing drunk drivers from the roads.

Hopefully the mobility and surprise factor behind DUI wolf packs will catch people off guard, and if they’re caught once, they think twice about drunk driving.

Stop Me If You’ve Heard This One: Crazy Drunk Driving Cases

crazy drunk driving There’s a reason why people use the saying, ‘there must be something in the water.’ It usually describes a situation where a bunch of people perform the same action despite the fact that the action in question seems crazy. That’s what its like to see crazy drunk driving case after case pop up on the news every day.

Despite proof that drunk driving is dangerous and can result in the death of the driver or anyone on the road with him or her, people still continue to get behind the wheel drunk. And when they make that choice, crazy situations can happen.

Here’s two crazy drunk driving cases from the past week that will make you scratch your head.

Philadelphia nun convicted of drunk driving

New Jersey nun Sister Kimberly Miller was convicted of drunk driving after she admitted to having an Ambien and a glass of wine, but she doesn’t remember crashing her car. She was arrested in November of 2015 when she drove her vehicle into an auto repair shop, and although police said her blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was twice the legal limit, her blood test wasn’t admissible in court. For her crime of drunk driving in Philadelphia, Sister Miller received a 90-day driver’s license suspension and over $200 in fines.

Former teacher of the year drives drunk

Anne Murphy may have been a teacher of the year in 2014, but that didn’t stop her from drunk driving in Florida recently. She was arrested for suspicion of driving under the influence (DUI) after cruising down the sidewalk in her car, and she was arrested with a BAC of .21.

Murphy failed sobriety tests and admitted to drinking 3 glasses of champagne. She was booked for misdemeanor DUI with a BAC over .15. In Florida that may mean fines up to $1,000, jail time for 270 days, and an ignition interlock in any vehicle she drives.

Those are just two unusual drunk driving cases from the past week, and unfortunately there are many more popping up every day. It makes you wonder how long it will be before people get the message that drinking and driving, even after one drink, is a really bad idea.

 

 

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