Criminal Defense Case Results

This page contains a small example of cases and results we have recently obtained in our clients favor. It’s important to note that the outcomes presented on this page may differ from those available for you case. The smallest details in a case can make the biggest difference in shaping a defense strategy.

We invite you to call our Ft. Lauderdale criminal lawyers at (754) 755-8554 or send a confidential online message for a free consultation on how we can help you.

 


 

Most Recent Case Results

      • Charges: Possession of Cannabis

        Case #:19000432MM30A

        Facts:

        Davie police stopped the Defendant and his friend while they were walking around in a gated community at 3AM. The officers claimed they conducted a ‘pat down’ of the Defendant due to concerns for officer safety. Officers then reported that after the pat down, Defendant stated that he had marijuana in his pocket. Pursuant to that alleged statement, officers searched the Defendant and discovered marijuana.

        Outcome: Mr. Dobrinsky filed a Motion to Suppress all evidence and statements, arguing that the police illegally detained the Defendant, and then proceeded to illegally search him as well. In this Motion, the credibility of the police officers involved was significantly called into question. Mr. Dobrinsky had his Motion to Suppress set for an evidentiary hearing. The State Attorney’s Office dismissed the case prior to that hearing.

      • Charges:
        Possession of Oxycodone with Intent to Deliver
        Possession of Hydrocodone with Intent to Deliver
        Possession of Alprazolam with Intent to Deliver

        Case #:17012401CF10A

        Facts:

        The Defendant was stopped outside of his vehicle by police who were responding to anonymous reports of narcotics dealing pertaining to Defendant’s vehicle. The Defendant consented to a search of his vehicle. During the search, police found significant amounts of narcotics hidden in various areas of the car. Defendant was arrested and charged with three different Second Degree Felony drug possession with intent to distribute charges, which carried a combined maximum possible punishment of 45 years in Florida State Prison. Through diligent and creative investigation, Stephan Dobrinsky obtained various pieces of evidence, such as surveillance footage and anonymous 911 calls, all of which suggested that the narcotics found inside the vehicle were actually planted there without the Defendant’s knowledge or consent. Mr. Dobrinsky provided this evidence to the State Attorney’s Office. He also discussed with the prosecutors the issues they would have proving constructive possession, since Defendant was apprehended outside of the vehicle and there had been more than one recent occupant to the vehicle.

        Outcome: Mr. Dobrinsky was able to convince the State Attorney’s Office to dismiss all charges against the Defendant!

      • Charges: Felony Battery By Strangulation (Domestic)

        Case #:19-007209CF10A

        Facts:

        The Defendant was charged with Felony Domestic Battery by Strangulation, a crime punishable by 5 years in prison and a $5,000.00 fine. The Defendant’s girlfriend searched his phone and discovered that he was unfaithful. A severe verbal argument ensued, which later became physical after the Defendant’ mother arrived at the home. The defendant’s girlfriend threw her cellphone at the Defendant and the Defendant then punched her and strangled here to the extent that she could not breathe. The Defendant’s girlfriend called 911 and police arrived and began to investigate. Statements were taken from all parties involved, including the Defendant, who admitted to holding her by the neck with his right hand and pushed her to the floor. Several scratches and injuries upon the Defendant’s girlfriend were readily visible to law enforcement. Based upon the Defendant’s admission and the injuries seen by law enforcement, the Defendant was arrested by felony battery by strangulation, a third-degree felony.

        Outcome: Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was retained before the state had filed formal charges against the Defendant. The firm immediately went to work and obtained a witness statement from someone who was an eye-witness to the events giving rise to the Defendant’s arrest, who saw the girlfriend as the first aggressor in this incident and was grabbing our client by the hair and our client defending himself from her attack. This witness statement was provided to the filing attorney for the State. Based upon the firm’s efforts in obtaining this witness statement, the State DID NOT file any charges against the Defendant!

      • Charges: Felony Possession Of Controlled Substance and DUI (Second Offense w/in 5)

        Case #:18-023840MU10A

        Facts:

        The Defendant was charged with Felony Possession of Controlled Substance, punishable by 5 years in prison, and Driving Under the Influence, a second DUI offense within five years of a prior DUI conviction which carries a mandatory jail sentence and a five-year driver’s license revocation. The Defendant’s vehicle was stopped by Officer Malave of the Sunrise Police Department for repeatedly stopping and starting his vehicle near an intersection and for violating a flashing yellow light by stopping and remaining stationary at the intersection. Officer Malave approached the vehicle and made contact with the Defendant. Upon making contact with the Defendant, the Officer noticed that the defendant had the strong odor of an alcoholic beverage, bloodshot and watery eyes, slurred speech ; and the Defendant was incapable of formulating complete sentences. The Defendant would nod off in mid-sentence and was completely incoherent at times. After making those observations, Officer Malave, a female called for the assistance of two male officer’s due to the Defendant’s condition and physical size. The male officers loudly ordered the Defendant out of the car on multiple occasions, but the Defendant would not comply. The Officers attempted to forcibly remove the Defendant from the vehicle, but the Defendant resisted those efforts by bracing, pulling and stiffening his body so that the officers could not move him. The Defendant was slammed to the ground, which the officers took as a refusal to perform roadside exercises and then incorrectly read the Defendant implied consent, which only applies to breath tests. Officers noticed that there ere three cans of beer in the vehicle as well. The Defendant was arrested for DUI and was NOT taken to the Breath Testing Facility and DUI Room, but only the Broward County Main Jail. The Defendant was never asked to submit to a breath test. After the Defendant’s arrest, Officers discovered 27 pills located in a tackle box in the Defendant’s vehicle which ultimately were revealed to be anabolic steroids.

        Partner, Lawrence Meltzer of Meltzer & Bell prepared for trial. During preparation, the firm filed several Motions in Limine (Motions to Exclude Evidence) that asked the court to exclude any reference to roadside exercises or the Defendant’s alleged refusal top perform them as the Defendant was not offered the roadside exercises and, thus, never refused them. Additionally, the court was asked to exclude any mention of a refusal to submit to a breath test or failure to give on as, again, one was never offered. Finally, the court was asked to prohibit the State from discussing the anabolic steroids as such pills, although a controlled substance, are not those of an impairing or intoxicating nature.

        Outcome: After receiving the Motion, the state conceded and was compelled to drop all DUI related charges. Meltzer & Bell was also able to have all felony drug charges dropped as well.

      • Charges: Driving Under the Influence

        Case #:18024321MU10A

        Facts:

        The Defendant was charged with Driving Under the Influence. Officers of the Davie Police Department were alerted by a concerned citizen that our client was leaving The Billiard Club, a pool bar, in an extremely intoxicated state and about to drive. The Officer approached the vehicle as the car was in reverse, ordered the Defendant to stop the vehicle and conducted a wellness check and noticed the Defendant had bloodshot eyes, the odor of an alcoholic beverage, and extremely slurred speech. Based on those observations, the officer asked the Defendant to perform roadside sobriety exercises, to which the defendant refused. The Defendant was placed under arrest for DUI and was asked to submit to a breath test, but, again refused.

        Outcome: Lawrence Meltzer of Meltzer and Bell began to prepare for trial and researched case law in an effort to suppress or throw out the stop of the Defendant’s vehicle and all evidence that followed the stop as being unconstitutional and based upon a lack of reasonable suspicion as the Defendant had done nothing to justify her vehicle being stopped. The firm and Mr. Meltzer researched a similar factual scenario in State v. Sliviak in which the stop was suppressed based upon a lack of reasonable suspicion of criminal activity in an almost identical situation. This case law was presented to the State prior to trial. Upon receiving it, the State agreed and dropped the DUI charge.

      • Charges: Trafficking THC and Possession of Marijuana with Intent to Sell

        Case #:185235CF10A

        Facts:

        The Defendant was charged with Trafficking in THC and Possession of Marijuana with intent to deliver. The Trafficking charges were punishable by a 15 year minimum / mandatory prison sentence. The Defendant was being investigated by the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office for Possession of Cocaine with intent to Sell and Trafficking in THC. Broward Authorities met with the Defendant During the Palm Beach investigation and obtained verbal consent to search his residence for any illegal drugs. The Defendant accompanied law enforcement back to his residence to conduct the search and gave his full consent to search the entirety of his home. The Defendant directed the authorities to his garage which contained 3,165 grams of fresh marijuana, 2,205 grams of THC Extract Wax; 7,415 grams of THC oil vape pens among other drug related items. The Defendant admitted Post-Miranda that all of the drugs found in the house were his; he was selling them for profit and that he had approximately $50,000.00 in cash that were drug-related proceeds in his closet. The evidence was concrete and overwhelmingly against our client. He was basically dealing drugs out of his home for a living in trafficking amounts. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. began investigating the case and doing everything possible to prevent and mitigate the imposition of the 15 year minimum/mandatory sentence from being imposed.

        Outcome: After all was said and done Meltzer & Bell’s work resulted in only 90 days in Broward County Jail for our client followed by a 6 year term of supervision. If convicted, our client would have received anywhere from 15 to 30 years in prison, but thanks to Meltzer & Bell, P.A. he did not.

      • Charges: Violation of Probation

        Case #: 15001671CF10A

        Facts:

        While on probation for Aggravated Battery, the Defendant was arrested on three separate occasions in two different counties. The arrests were for misdemeanor domestic battery, driving on a suspended license with leaving the scene of an accident, and felony drug possession. In total, there were seven different allegations as to how he violated his probation. The Defendant was facing a minimum sentence of nearly 3 years in prison, and a potential maximum punishment of 15 years in prison. To make matters worse, he was being held in jail without the possibility of bond.

        Outcome: Stephan Dobrinsky worked swiftly and diligently on the case so to devise a plan that would avoid any prison time and get the Defendant reinstated on his probation and released from jail. Despite the numerous violations, the Defendant was soon released from custody and reinstated on his probation. The new misdemeanor domestic battery was dropped.

      • Charges: DUI Enhanced with Breath Result over a .15

        Case #:18-xxxxxxxxx

        Facts:

        The Defendant was charged with Driving under the Influence (Enhanced) with a breath alcohol content over a .15 and proceeded to trial on June 16-17, 2019.  The Defendant was observed by Officer Del Pino of the Fort Lauderdale Police Department  carelessly exiting a McDonalds parking lot in the City of Fort Lauderdale by cutting across three lanes of traffic and causing other vehicles on the road to hit their brakes on short notice. The Defendant thereafter headed North proceeded to a turning lane featuring a flashing red arrow where she stopped and disobeyed the traffic signal when it had turned green. While stopped at the green light, Officer Del Pino continued to observe our client as she consumed a cheeseburger while the light remained green. The client failed to see the officer who was stopped right next to her in his fully marked patrol vehicle. Our client eventually proceeded through the green light and was followed by Officer Del Pino and eventually stopped by him. Prior to stopping her vehicle, our client failed to pullover right away and once she pulled into a parking lot failed to fully stop her vehicle until ordered to do so  by Officer Del Pino. Officer Del Pino made contact with our client and noticed that she had the odor of an alcoholic beverage, bloodshot eyes, slurred speech and was slow and lethargic in her movements. Our client also admitted to consuming three glasses of wine prior to driving. Based on these observations, Officer Del Pino called Officer Jason Carter, a member of the DUI Task Force for the Fort Lauderdale Police Department to conduct a DUI investigation consisting of three roadside sobriety exercises, among other things, that are scientifically validated to detect impairment in suspected DUI drivers. The roadside exercises were done  in front of the Officers’ Body Worn Camera. The first exercise was the HGN Test which is used to detect impairment by alcohol by observing movements of the eyes. During that exercise our clients eyes failed to smoothly pursue the Officers “pen” during the exercises and demonstrated nystagmus, both of which indicated the client was impaired by alcohol and her alcohol content was above the legal limit. The next exercise was the walk and turn exercise. During that exercise, our client started before she was supposed to, failed to touch heel to toe on multiple steps as instructed; raised her arms more than six inches for balance; turned improperly, and took an incorrect number of steps despite confirming with the officer on video that she was supposed to only take 9 steps up and back immediately before beginning the exercise. The last exercise was the one leg stand during which our client counted incorrectly, placed her foot down on more than one occasion, raised her arms for balance and generally appeared impaired while on video. The Defendant was then arrested for DUI and was requested to submit to a breath test. Prior to ultimately consenting to the breath test, our client repeated the same questions to Officer Carter about the consequences of refusing the test for approximately 45 minutes. After finally deciding to submit to a breath test, the Defendant’s result turned out to be over twice the legal limit .161 g/210L  and .162g/210L.

        Despite the perceived nature and strength of the evidence against our client, Partner, Lawrence Meltzer of Meltzer & Bell, P.A. proceeded to trial. During trial, Attorney Meltzer masterfully cross-examined the Officer Carter as to her observations and as to the Defendant’s performance on roadside exercises and was able to illicit testimony from him that he actually doubted the Defendant’s intoxylizer results and that statement was actually captured on his own body worn camera. Additionally, Attorney Meltzer, confronted the Broward Sherriff’s Office Intoxylizer Maintenance Technician with the Sheriff’s Office’s own records demonstrating that that the intoxylizer was not working properly on the day it was tested for use during the calendar month of my client’s breath test. More specifically,  Meltzer & Bell demonstrated through diligent research of the maintenance records that the machine that our client blew into indicated there were five different log-ins during testing within a 13-minute period and that said machine was tested simultaneously and in the same manner as another intoxylizer that reflected only one log-in through the entire testing cycle. The maintenance technician claimed that the reasons for the multiple log-ins were because the machine “timed out” when she was compelled  to walk away from the machine to tend to some other unidentified duty or duties. Attorney Meltzer argued to the jury that the multiple log-ins indicated the machine was defective and the maintenance technician was not credible as to her claim the machine was in compliance based upon the fact that both machines being tested should have had multiple log-ins if she had to walk away from them both.

        Outcome: The Defendant was found NOT GUILTY by a jury!!!! This was Mr. Meltzer’s 257th win at trial in regards to DUI!!!!


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      Drug and Marijuana Charges

          • Charges: Trafficking THC and Possession of Marijuana with Intent to Sell

            Case #:185235CF10A

            Facts:

            The Defendant was charged with Trafficking in THC and Possession of Marijuana with intent to deliver. The Trafficking charges were punishable by a 15 year minimum / mandatory prison sentence. The Defendant was being investigated by the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office for Possession of Cocaine with intent to Sell and Trafficking in THC. Broward Authorities met with the Defendant During the Palm Beach investigation and obtained verbal consent to search his residence for any illegal drugs. The Defendant accompanied law enforcement back to his residence to conduct the search and gave his full consent to search the entirety of his home. The Defendant directed the authorities to his garage which contained 3,165 grams of fresh marijuana, 2,205 grams of THC Extract Wax; 7,415 grams of THC oil vape pens among other drug related items. The Defendant admitted Post-Miranda that all of the drugs found in the house were his; he was selling them for profit and that he had approximately $50,000.00 in cash that were drug-related proceeds in his closet. The evidence was concrete and overwhelmingly against our client. He was basically dealing drugs out of his home for a living in trafficking amounts. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. began investigating the case and doing everything possible to prevent and mitigate the imposition of the 15 year minimum/mandatory sentence from being imposed.

            Outcome: After all was said and done Meltzer & Bell’s work resulted in only 90 days in Broward County Jail for our client followed by a 6 year term of supervision. If convicted, our client would have received anywhere from 15 to 30 years in prison, but thanks to Meltzer & Bell, P.A. he did not.

          • Charges: Possession of Oxycodone, Possession of Hydromorphone

            Case #: 14-XXXXXXXXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was stopped by officers for severe weaving and striking a guard rail on West McNab Road and then coming within inches of the same guard rail again. The Defendant struck the center median as he pulled over for the officer. The officer approached the driver’s side an observed in plain view a yellow, clear plastic baggie containing one half of a pill, which the Defendant admitted was Percocet and did not have a prescription. He was arrested for the Possession of a Controlled Substance. The officer then conducted a search incident to arrest which revealed several other pills, which turned out to be oxycodone. Meltzer & Bell received discovery and prepared for trial.

            Outcome: All charges were DISMISSED.

          • Charges: Fleeing and Eluding, Possession of Cannabis (MM), No Valid Driver’s License, and Failing to stop at a stop sign.

            Case #: 15-7XXXCFXXX

            Facts: Meltzer & Bell was retained to defend our client on charges of Fleeing and Eluding, a misdemeanor cannabis charge, No Valid Driver’s License, and running a stop sign. Our client had no criminal history. The Fleeing and Eluding charge required that our client be labeled a convicted felon for the rest of his life; his driver’s license would have been suspended as required by law, and he would be exposed to 5 years in Florida State Prison. The Defendant was accused of violating a stop sign. Officers in an unmarked vehicle effected a traffic stop using lights and sirens. As the officers approached the vehicle our client sped off toward his home. The officers also went to the Defendant’s home using the tag information. The Defendant was arrested for Fleeing and Eluding. Meltzer & Bell was able to demonstrate to the prosecution that the Defendant sped off and had no intent to flee law enforcement as he feared for his safety. The officers were in an unmarked vehicle, were masked and armed with machine guns, and were wearing dark unmarked clothing as they approached his vehicle. After receiving this evidence, the State dropped the felony charges for Fleeing and Eluding.

            Outcome: The Defendant did NOT become classified as a convicted delon and did NOT have his driver’s license suspended.

          • Charges: Possession of Cannabis

            Case #: 15-9XXMMXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was stopped in the city of Hollywood for driving without headlights. The Officer approached the vehicle and smelled the odor of burny cannabis. The Officer then searched the vehicle and discovered cannabis. The Defendant admitted the cannabis belonged to her.

            Outcome: The State DISMISSED all charges.

          • Charges: Possession of Cannabis

            Case #: 15-XXXXXXXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was parked in the entry way of a neighborhood. An officer saw the Defendant’s vehicle sitting in a designated area for parking. The Officer immediately pulled her patrol car with lights on behind the Defendant’s vehicle. The Defendant had done nothing wrong nor had he committed any sort of offense. The Defendant was helf for purposes of a K-9 search and marijuana was found in the vehicle. Meltzer & Bell was retained and filed a motion to Suppress the Unlawful Stop of the Vehcile and the Detention for the K-9 search. The court granted the motion and excluded the marijuana from the case

            Outcome: The State DROPPED all charges.

          • Charges: Possession of Cannabis Less than 20g (MM)

            Case #: 15-5XXMMXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was parked in a shopping center parking lot with the interior lights on. An officer doing an area check approached the Defendant’s car to see why he was there. Upon approaching the vehicle, the office saw the Defendant rolling a “joint” in plain view. The Defendant indicated the marijuana was his and also handed over rolling papers to the officer as well.

            Outcome: All charges were DISMISSED.

          • Charges: Possession of Cannabis (MM), Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, Expired Driver’s License More Than Six Months, and Expired License Plate Tags.

            Case #: 16-20XXMMXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was stopped for an Expired Tag. The Officer could easily smell the odor of freshly burnt marijuana and cologne to cover the odor of the marijuana. The Officer asked the Defendant to exit the vehicle and where the marijuana was. The Defendant responded that the marijuana was on his person and handed the officer the marijuana and a pipe out of his pants pocket.

            Outcome: All charges were DISMISSED.

          • Charges: 3 Counts of Sale of Cocaine within 1,000 feet of a church, Conspiracy to sell Cocaine, 3 counts of Possession of Cocaine, Sale of Cocaine.

            Case #: 2016CF00XX96

            Facts: The Special Investigations Unit organized a plan to arrest our client for allegedly selling cocaine. Officers employed a confidential informant and undercover officer which were used in four different controlled buys of cocaine. The Defendant was videotaped, audio recorded, and seen by both the confidential informant and undercover officers involved, selling cocaine on four occasions. S search warrant was conducted on the Defendants home and he was subsequently arrested and charged with nine criminal charges. These charges ranged from low level possession of cocaine, to 1st degree felonies with minimum mandatory prison sentences. The Defendant was facing a maximum of 140 YEARS in prison and 9.4 years at a minimum.

            With ouf specialized knowledge in prosecutions of these types of cases, the attorneys of Meltzer & Bell, P.A. fought this case tooth and nail until the month before trial. We searched through almost 1,000 pages of discovery, over 15 various videos, and numerous deposition of every witness involved.
            With the initial offer to resolve the case at 25 years in prison, the Defendant rejected that and any offers conveyed. The Defendant had full faith in the lawyers of the firm and rightfully so. We were able to expose the lies, deception and shady tactics of the police agency. Additionally, the attorneys were able to expose who the confidential informat truly was, attack his credibility and break down the state’s case.

            Outcome: At the end of the day, our client walked away without taking any plea spending any additional time in jail or prison and without felony convictions for these charges on his record. After fighting to the end, gearing up for trial and never backing down, the state prosecutor was forced to drop charges.

          • Charges: Possession of a Controlled Substance (Felony)

            Case #: 13CF0XXX26XAXX

            Facts: The Defendant was seen by a citizen witness driving all over the road almost smashing into oncoming traffic. After giving 911 the vehicle information, the defendant was spotted in a nearby plaza. When the officer made contact with her he noticed an odor of alcohol and glassy eyes. She was subjected to roadside exercises. Before the exercises began, she put her keys on the car and said “you can search the car”. The officers searched the vehicle and found controlled substances in her car that she did not have a prescription for. She was taken into custody and charged with a Felony. She additional violated a separate probation because of this offense.

            Outcome: Our Firm pursued all possible avenues and had numerous lengthy discussions regarding the stop issues and subsequent prescription issues in the case. After these lengthy, many months of negotiations, the State of Florida agreed to dismiss all felony charges.

          • Charges: Possession of Cocaine

            Case #: 15-XX8XCXX0A

            Facts: The Defendant was lawfully parked in a church parking lot with a friend. A Fort Lauderdale Police Department Officer pulled into the church parking lot to investigate as to why the Defendant’s car was there as the Church was closed. The Defendant nor his passenger were suspected of any criminal wrongdoing at the time the officer approached the vehicle. Both the Defendant and his passenger identified themselves to the officer as requested and told the officer they were just talking and the passenger lived just across the street from the church. The officer then required that the Defendant and his passenger exit the vehicle for purposes of having a canine sniff search done on the vehicle. Subsequent to the search, a very small piece of cocaine was found in the crack of one of the Defendant’s front seats. The Defendant nor his passenger admitted to knowledge of the presence of the drug and both denied they even knew it was there.

            Outcome: Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was retained and immediately prepared a pre-filing investigation packet in order for this charge not to filed. The Firm prepared a detained letter along with case law to the State Attorney’s Office Case Filing Unit. In the letter, Meltzer & Bell, P.A. pointed out that the Defendant and his passenger were unlawfully seized when ordered out of the car for purposes of the canine search as neither was suspected of criminal activity or wrongdoing pursuant to United States Supreme Court Case Law. Additionally, it was pointed out that the State did not have a good faith basis to proceed with filing formal charges as neither occupant knew of the drug or claimed ownership of the drug. As a result of the efforts of Meltzer & Bell, P.A. all charges against the Defendant were declined for filing and a “No Information” was entered in favor of the Defendant.

          • Charges: Possession of Cannabis

            Case #: 14-0XX57XMXX0A

            Facts: The Defendant and her boyfriend had just purchased cannabis and were in the parking lot of an apartment complex. Officers approached her vehicle and witnessed her and her boyfriend preparing to smoke marijuana. The officers witnessed the marijuana in plain view and the Defendant was issued a written arrest and charged formally with Possession of Cannabis.

            Outcome: Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was retained and investigated the case. All charges were dismissed.

          • Charges: Possession of Marijuana (Violation of Probation)

            Case #: MXK1XX55X

            Facts: The Defendant was on probation and committed a felony offense out of another county. A warrant was issued for her arrest. The firm had our bondsman on call to expeditiously get her in and out of custody on her warrant. A court date was set on the violation and the Firm began fighting the new criminal charges. The State attorney on the violation wanted to convict her of the possession charge which would have resulted in a 2 year license suspension. Additionally, she wanted her to complete a rigorous year long drug court program.

            Outcome: After gathering evidence and presenting arguments to the felony prosecutor on the new felony charges all of those charges were dropped. The prosecutor on the probation case then agreed to dismiss the affidavit for violation of probation completely and our client did not face any further penalty. All probation allegation charges dismissed.


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      Driving Under the Influence (DUI)

          • Charges: DUI Enhanced with Breath Result over a .15

            Case #:18-xxxxxxxxx

            Facts:

            The Defendant was charged with Driving under the Influence (Enhanced) with a breath alcohol content over a .15 and proceeded to trial on June 16-17, 2019.  The Defendant was observed by Officer Del Pino of the Fort Lauderdale Police Department  carelessly exiting a McDonalds parking lot in the City of Fort Lauderdale by cutting across three lanes of traffic and causing other vehicles on the road to hit their brakes on short notice. The Defendant thereafter headed North proceeded to a turning lane featuring a flashing red arrow where she stopped and disobeyed the traffic signal when it had turned green. While stopped at the green light, Officer Del Pino continued to observe our client as she consumed a cheeseburger while the light remained green. The client failed to see the officer who was stopped right next to her in his fully marked patrol vehicle. Our client eventually proceeded through the green light and was followed by Officer Del Pino and eventually stopped by him. Prior to stopping her vehicle, our client failed to pullover right away and once she pulled into a parking lot failed to fully stop her vehicle until ordered to do so  by Officer Del Pino. Officer Del Pino made contact with our client and noticed that she had the odor of an alcoholic beverage, bloodshot eyes, slurred speech and was slow and lethargic in her movements. Our client also admitted to consuming three glasses of wine prior to driving. Based on these observations, Officer Del Pino called Officer Jason Carter, a member of the DUI Task Force for the Fort Lauderdale Police Department to conduct a DUI investigation consisting of three roadside sobriety exercises, among other things, that are scientifically validated to detect impairment in suspected DUI drivers. The roadside exercises were done  in front of the Officers’ Body Worn Camera. The first exercise was the HGN Test which is used to detect impairment by alcohol by observing movements of the eyes. During that exercise our clients eyes failed to smoothly pursue the Officers “pen” during the exercises and demonstrated nystagmus, both of which indicated the client was impaired by alcohol and her alcohol content was above the legal limit. The next exercise was the walk and turn exercise. During that exercise, our client started before she was supposed to, failed to touch heel to toe on multiple steps as instructed; raised her arms more than six inches for balance; turned improperly, and took an incorrect number of steps despite confirming with the officer on video that she was supposed to only take 9 steps up and back immediately before beginning the exercise. The last exercise was the one leg stand during which our client counted incorrectly, placed her foot down on more than one occasion, raised her arms for balance and generally appeared impaired while on video. The Defendant was then arrested for DUI and was requested to submit to a breath test. Prior to ultimately consenting to the breath test, our client repeated the same questions to Officer Carter about the consequences of refusing the test for approximately 45 minutes. After finally deciding to submit to a breath test, the Defendant’s result turned out to be over twice the legal limit .161 g/210L  and .162g/210L.

            Despite the perceived nature and strength of the evidence against our client, Partner, Lawrence Meltzer of Meltzer & Bell, P.A. proceeded to trial. During trial, Attorney Meltzer masterfully cross-examined the Officer Carter as to her observations and as to the Defendant’s performance on roadside exercises and was able to illicit testimony from him that he actually doubted the Defendant’s intoxylizer results and that statement was actually captured on his own body worn camera. Additionally, Attorney Meltzer, confronted the Broward Sherriff’s Office Intoxylizer Maintenance Technician with the Sheriff’s Office’s own records demonstrating that that the intoxylizer was not working properly on the day it was tested for use during the calendar month of my client’s breath test. More specifically,  Meltzer & Bell demonstrated through diligent research of the maintenance records that the machine that our client blew into indicated there were five different log-ins during testing within a 13-minute period and that said machine was tested simultaneously and in the same manner as another intoxylizer that reflected only one log-in through the entire testing cycle. The maintenance technician claimed that the reasons for the multiple log-ins were because the machine “timed out” when she was compelled  to walk away from the machine to tend to some other unidentified duty or duties. Attorney Meltzer argued to the jury that the multiple log-ins indicated the machine was defective and the maintenance technician was not credible as to her claim the machine was in compliance based upon the fact that both machines being tested should have had multiple log-ins if she had to walk away from them both.

            Outcome: The Defendant was found NOT GUILTY by a jury!!!! This was Mr. Meltzer’s 257th win at trial in regards to DUI!!!!

          • Charges: REFUSAL TO SUBMIT TO TESTING

            Case #:17-000011MU10A

            Facts: The Defendant was observed by Officer Troy Murdock of the Coral Springs Police Department traveling 55 in a 40mph and weaving uncontrollably to the extent traffic began to slow in order to evade her. The officer activated his emergency lights in order to stop the Defendant, however, she did not until she was forced to because of a traffic backup at the intersection of Riverside Drive and Coral Springs Drive.

            Upon making contact with the Defendant, the officer noticed the defendant to have an extremely strong odor of an alcoholic beverage; that she could not handle or identify her vehicle documentation and that her speech was extremely slurred and that she was disoriented to the point where she was nodding off in front of the officer. When asked if she knew how fast she was moving the defendant responded by saying “I was doing 99.9”. The Defendant was asked to exit the vehicle and could not place the car in park. Upon exiting the vehicle, the Defendant almost fell into oncoming traffic and had to be saved by the officer. The Defendant could not maintain her balance and was disheveled in her appearance. The defendant refused to perform roadside exercises and later refused a breath test. The defendant had previously been arrested for DUI and previously had her licensed suspended for refusing a breath test and admitted to “having some vodkas”.

            Meltzer & Bell, once again, proceeded to trial. At trial, our attorneys were able to demonstrate that the officer was not truthful in his testimony through the use of photographs and google satellite photos, and based upon the testimony of the client.

            Outcome: The Defendant was found NOT GUILTY!!!

          • Charges: DUI

            Case #: 16-02567MU10A

            Facts: The Defendant was seen sleeping at the wheel by a civilian while waiting at a traffic signal at the intersection of Broward Boulevard and University Drive in the City of Plantation as wheel as the intersection that followed.

            The civilian called the Plantation Police Department to report that the Defendant was a danger to other drivers.  Officer Traci Fox of the Plantation Police Department saw the Defendant driving in a reckless manner; with front-end damage to the car and driving on the rim causing damage to roadway. Officer Fox Stopped the vehicle while the Defendant attempted a U-Turn from a left turn only median.

            Officer Fox called Officer Jeffrey Beauregard to conduct a DUI investigation based upon her observations of severely slurred speech and abnormal disorientation. Officer Beauregard observed the Defendant had a white film around her mouth, bloodshot eyes, slurred and slow speech; lethargic movements and that her eyelids were abnormally heavy as if she was nodding off. The Defendant was asked to perform roadside exercises on video and performed very poorly to the extent that she lost her balance several times, failed to follow instructions, missed heal to toe; visibly swayed, and could not follow the simplest of instructions.

            The Defendant was arrested for DUI and taken to jail. The Defendant was asked to give both a breath and urine sample. The breath sample did not register for alcohol, but the urine test revealed a litany of drugs in her system, including, but not limited to: ambien, oxycodone, oxymorphone and opiates.

            The case proceeded to trial and the State presented all of the officer’s testimony and played the DUI video for the jury that reflected the Defendant’s impairment due to the drugs in her system. During the trial, Meltzer and Bell was able to demonstrate to the jury that the drugs contained in the Defendant’s urine had already passed through the body and would no longer have any impairing effect by cross examining the State’s toxicologist. Additionally, the Defendant also testified that she had taken these drugs days before this event and at the time of her arrest she was having a severe spike in her blood pressure, which was corroborated by the presence of her blood pressure medication in her urine and by her statement to officers.

            Outcome: THE DEFENDENT WAS FOUND NOT GUILTY BY A JURY!!

          • Charges: FELONY DUI

            Case #: 18-9172CF10A

            Facts: The Defendant was charged with felony Driving Under the Influence based upon this arrest being his third DUI within 10 years. That crime was punishable by 5 years in prison. The Defendant was seen driving recklessly on a scooter as he was drifting uncontrollably and weaving. The Defendant also almost hit a white vehicle that was driving directly in front of him.   The stopping officer noticed a pungent odor of an alcoholic beverage; bloodshot watery eyes, severely slurred speech; he exhibited disorientation as he stated that he was coming from the ocean in Fort Lauderdale (he was not); and the defendant admitted that he had “3-4 vodka cranberry alcoholic beverages.”

            Officer Hannie Gil of the Wilton Manors Police Department arrived to perform the DUI investigation and video recorded it. The Defendant was clearly impaired by alcohol on video and his slurred speech and disorientation was clear. The Defendant began roadside exercises, but almost fell and decided to decline the remainder of the requested exercises. The Defendant then requested to provide a breath test and refused. The defendant then refused the breath test.

            After reviewing discovery, Meltzer & Bell filed two separate motions to suppress (exclude) evidence. More specifically, the motions requested that the court to exclude the Defendant’s refusal to perform roadside exercises as the officer failed to advise him of the consequences of that refusal and to exclude the refusal to submit to a breath test as said request was not made subsequent to his arrest, but before the arrest.

            Outcome: The state reviewed the motions that were submitted, found that each had merit and dropped all felony charges against the Defendant.

          • Charges: DUI

            Case #: 18024755MU10A

            Facts: A DUI Task Force Officer for the Broward Sheriff’s Office pulled Defendant over for Speeding on SE 3rd Avenue in Fort Lauderdale. Upon making contact with the defendant, the Officer noticed the Defendant to have the odor of an alcoholic beverage, bloodshot eyes, and slurred speech. The Defendant was asked to perform roadside exercises, which she did in HIGH HEELS. The Officer claimed that the Defendant performed poorly on the exercises to the extent that she “lost her balance”; failed to touch heel to toe and swayed involuntarily.

            The Defendant was arrested for DUI and refused the Breath Test. Meltzer & Bell obtained all of the video evidence in the case which revealed that the officer’s description of our client was inaccurate and the client appeared NOT to be impaired. The video also reflected that the Defendant performed beautifully on the roadside exercises despite the fact she had done them in 6-inch high heels. Meltzer & Bell announced ready for trial.

            Outcome: The State dropped the DUI.

          • Charges: DUI Crash Enhanced

            Case #: XXXXXXXXXXXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was seen by several drivers traveling recklessly and at a very high rate of speed. The Defendant was then involved in a rear end collision. The Defendant then travelled approximately 1000 feet up the road after crashing into the vehicle. This was a very severe rollover crash. The crash and flight from the crash was witnessed by a Broward Sheriff’s deputy who was transporting a prisoner. An FHP Trooper responded to the scene to investigate. The Trooper transported the Defendant back to the scene and was unable to tell the investigator what caused him to crash. The trooper noticed that the Defendant had the strong odor of an alcoholic beverage; was very unsteady on his feet ; there was a half consumed bottle of whiskey in the vehicle. The Defendant admitted to drinking whiskey and wine prior to driving while in South Beach. The Defendant was asked to perform roadside exercises and performed terribly. The Defendant was unable to count properly and almost fell on two occasions. The Defendant was arrested for DUI and submitted to a breath test which resulted in readings of .176/.185, over two times the legal limit. Meltzer & Bell was retained and prepared for trial. The firm discovered a technical issue with the trooper’s investigation.

            Outcome: The DUI charge was DROPPED

          • Charges: Miami Dade Fleeing and Eluding, DUI, LSA, RWOV, DWLS/R

            Case #: XXXXXXXXXXXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was diving on New Year’s Eve, 2017. The Defendant suddenly crashed into the rear of another vehicle causing property damage. Miami Beach Police Officers witnessed the crash. The Defendant failed to remain at the scene and took off Northbound to flee the police. The Defendant would have continued to flee, but for the fact he drove his vehicle into a very deep puddle on Collins Avenue that incapacitated his vehicle. Upon making contact with the Defendant, officers from the Miami Beach Police Department noticed the Defendant to have the strong odor of an alcoholic beverage, very slurred speech, that he was very much verbally combative and abusive toward the officers; his eyes were bloodshot and watery; and he was unsteady and incoherent, in general. The Defendant stated to the officers “I drove drunk, but I’m not wrong for violating my rights”; “it’s because I am black” (the Defendant is white), “I have been convicted to prison for life already” (he has no criminal history whatsoever), “I am friends with OJ Simpson” – “we played together in Buffalo” (he obviously did not), and stated “Do I look f—–g stupid to you”. The Defendant refused to perform roadside exercises and would not submit to the breath test. The Defendant’s license was also suspended at the time of the DUI. The Defendant was changed with Fleeing and Eluding (a felony), DUI, Leaving the Scene of an Accident, Resisting an Officer without Violence and Driving while License Suspended. Meltzer & Bell was retained and immediately began to work on the Defendant’s case. The firm was able to have the felony charges dropped before they were ever formally filed within 48 hours after the Defendant’s arrest, however, the DUI and the other criminal charges were formally filed. The firm continued to prepare for trial and on the day of trial, the DUI was dropped and all other charges were dismissed.

            Outcome: The client was extremely happy that he received NO felony charges and NO DUI on his record.

          • Charges: Driving While Under the Influence

            Case #: XXXXXXXXXXXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was charged with DUI after being stopped by law enforcement for speeding after being clocked at 51 mph in a 30 mph zone. The Defendant pulled over into a handicapped parking space located in a church parking lot. The officer made contact with the Defendant who exhibited signed of impairment including the odor of an alcoholic beverage; slurred speech; and bloodshot and glassy eyes and was unsteady and had a deliberate way of walking. The Defendant admitted to one drink, then two drinks and then later made reference to four drinks. The Defendant was asked to perform roadside exercises and performed poorly. During the walk and turn exercise the defendant used his arms for balance; stepped off of the line on at least two occasions; and failed to count properly to 9 even though he was a doctor. On the one leg stand the Defendant failed to comply with the requirement for the finger to nose test and also was making jokes and acting strangely during the officer’s investigation. The Defendant was arrested for DUI and refused to submit to a breath test. Meltzer & Bell, prepared and proceeded to trial on the matter.

            Outcome: The Defendant was found NOT GUILTY for all charges after only 15 minutes of jury deliberations.

          • Charges: Driving While Under the Influence

            Case #: 14-XXXXXXMXXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was found asleep at the wheel of his vehicle on the shoulder of the road. Fire Rescue and Law Enforcement appeared. The Officer repeatedly knocked on the window in order to wake the Defendant. Upon making contact, the officer noticed that the Defendant had the strong odor of an alcoholic beverage, bloodshot eyes, slurred speech and unsteadiness. The Defendant was asked to perform roadside exercises and did so poorly. Prior to actually performing the exercises, the Defendant twice refused to do them, but the two officers made false statements in order to convince him he had to do the exercises. Meltzer & Bell filed a motion to suppress the roadside exercises as the Defenadnt was misinformed by Law Enforcement in order to gain his consent to perform roadsides.

            Outcome: The motion was granted and the State DROPPED all of the DUI charges.

          • Charges: Driving While Under the Influence

            Case #: 14XXXXXXUXXX

            Facts: The Defendant’s Audi was parked along the curb of a parking lot, but was not in a designated spot. The Defendant was slumped over in the seat with her head over to the left. Upon being awoken by the officer, after several knocks on the window, the Defendant appeared dazed and confused, had the odor of an alcoholic beverage and slurred speech. She also admitted to drinking. She had difficulty handling and locating her vehicle documentation. The Defendant was asked to exit the vehicle and had to use the door to support and was unsteady. The Defendant consented to Field Sobriety Exercises and continuously lost her balance and was incoherent. The Defendant was arrested for DUI and refused a breath test. Meltzer & Bell prepared for trial and was going to assert a defense that the Defendant was not in actual physical control of a vehicle as she was not capable of operating a motor vehicle.

            Outcome: On the day of trial, the State DROPPED all of the DUI charges.

          • Charges: Driving While Under the Influence

            Case #: 14-XXXXXXMXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was stopped for speeding on Commercial Boulevard. As he began to stop his vehicle in a turn lane for the officer, his vehicle went up on the curb. Upon making contact with the Defendant, the officer smelled the odor of an alcoholic beverage, his eyes were glassy and bloodshot and his words were slurred. The Defendant was asked to exit the vehicle and to perform roadside sobriety exercises. As the Defendant exited his car he was extremely unsteady and had to lean against the back of his car in order to stand. During the roadside exercises, the Defendant performed poorly, he consistently missed heel to toe, stepped off of the line and could not keep his leg in the air, but for few seconds. The Defendant was arrested for DUI and refused breath testing. Meltzer & Bell prepared for and announced ready for trial.

            Outcome: The State DROPPED the DUI charges.

          • Charges: Second DUI within 5 Years, Refusal to Submit to Testing

            Case #: AXXXXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was charged with his second DUI within one year. He was facing up to one year in jail and a 5 year license supsension among several other severe penalties. The Defendant was in downtown Miami and was driving at high speeds and was driving recklessly. He eventually ran a red light and crashed broadside into another vehicle. The sccident totaled both vehicles and send the other driver to the hospital. The Defendant was being rude to officers on scene, had a strong odor of an alcoholic beverage; slurred speech and appeared unsteady. The Defendant was asked to do roadside exercises, but refused. The Defendant was arrested for DUI and later refused the breath test for the second time within a year, which was punishable by one year in jail in itself. Meltzer & Bell announced ready for trial.

            Outcome: The State DROPPED the DUI. This was the second time that Meltzer & Bell had won a DUI case for this client.

          • Charges: Felony Fleeing and Eluding, DUI Second Offense

            Case #: N/A

            Facts: Officers from the Sunrise Police Department came upon the Defendant’s vehicle at a red lright. The officers noticed the light change from red to green, but the Defendant’s vehicle never moved. This happened on two occasions. This happened on two occasions. It turned out our client was asleep at the wheel with his foot on the brake and the vehicle in drive. The officers banged repeatedly on the windows of the Defendant’s vehicle, but did not wake up. The Defendant finally woke up, looked at law enforcement and began to drive off. The officers followed with lights and sirens on, but the Defendant failed to stop. The vehicle stopped 5 blocks later. Upon being stopped, officers noticed the Defendant had the odor of an alcoholic beverage, slurred speech, and bloodshot watery eyes. The Defendant was then asked to perform roadside sobriety exercises and did so poorly. the Defendant was arrested for Fleeing and DUI and then refused a breath test. Meltzer & Bell was retained and began to prepare for trial. The firm was able to obtain testimony from the officers during depositions that the Defendant did not move his vehicle for blocks and fail to stop. The officer stated that the Defendant’s foot fell off the brake and the car rolled about 10 feet and stopped. Additionally, the firm was able to demonstrate through medical records from the jail that the Defendant was in the midst of severe diabetic episode with a sugar level of 360. This type of diabetic issue mimics impairment by alcohol.

            Outcome: After this evidence was provided by Meltzer & Bell, the State DROPPED the Fleeing Charge and the DUI charge.

          • Charges: Driving Under the Influence with Breath above .15.

            Case #: 15-13XXXMUXXX

            Facts: Officer Loughran of the Wilton manors Police Department saw the Defendant’s vehicle properly parked in a curbside parking lot with its headlights and blinker on. The Officer passed the vehicle several times over a 45 minute period and the vehicle never moved. The Officer approached the vehicle to investigate and saw the Defendant slumped over the wheel with his cell phone on his lap in text mode. The Officer knocked on the window several times in attempt to wake the Defendant, but to no avail. The Offiver opened the car door and shook the Defendant to wake him. The Defendant woke up and the Officer noticed him to have an odor of an alcoholic beverage, bloodshot eyes, and slurred speech. The Defendant also admitted to drinking alcohol before getting in the vehicle. Deputy Faccini of BSO DUI Task Force arrived on scene and made the same observations of the Defendant. He requested that the Defendant perform roadside exercises. The Defendant did not perform to standard and was arrested for DUI. The Defendant submitted to a breath test that resulted in readings of a .232/.238. Meltzer & Bell proceeded to jury trial and argued that the Defendant was not in actual physical control of the vehicle as he had no capability of operating the vehicle.

            Outcome: The Defendant was found NOT GUILTY after trial

          • Charges: Driving Under the Influence

            Case #: 15-3XXXXMUXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was stopped for Speeding on I-75. The FHP Trooper approached the vehicle and noticed the Defendant have an odor of an alcoholic beverage, bloodshot eyes, and slurred speech. The Defendant admitted to consuming alcohol at a Christmas party that his employer threw that night. The Defendant was asked to perform roadside exercises and looked unsteady. After roadside exercises were not performed to standard, the Defendant was arrested and refused to submit to a breath test. Meltzer & Bell set the case for trial and prepared.

            Outcome: The DUI charges were DROPPED.

          • Charges: Driving Under the Influence (2nd Offense) within 5 Years, Refusal to Submit to Breath Test

            Case #: N/A

            Facts: This was the Defendant’s second offense within 5 years of a prior conviction, which required a 5 year license revocation and a mandatory The Defendant was Stopped by a Miramar Officer in the City of Miramar for a violation of Stop Sign which occurred in the city of Pembroke Pines. Upon Stopping the Defendant. The Officer noticed the Defendant to have bloodshot eyes, an odor of an alcoholic beverage and slurred speech. The Defendant admitted to having “2 drinks”. The Defendant was asked to perform roadside sobriety exercises and did so poorly. The Defendant was arrested for DUI and refused a breath test. Meltzer & Bell filed a Motion to Suppress the Traffic Stop based upon the fact that the Miramar Officer had no Authority to conduct a traffic stop for a traffic infraction that occurred in Pembroke Pines without having been in fresh pursuit.

            Outcome: The Court GRANTED the Motion and the State DISMISSED all charges.

          • Charges: Driving Under the Influence

            Case #: 14-2XXXXMUXXX

            Facts: A BOLO was issued for the Defendant’s vehicle for driving erractically on Alantic Boulevard in Pompano Beach and colliding with the center median. Deputy Peyka of BSO noticed the vehicle described in the BOLO travelling very flowly and affecting other traffic and almost colliding with another vehicle. Deputy Reyka initiated a traffic stop. The Officer approached the Defendant’s vehicle and noticed bloodshot eyes, slurred speech, and slow and lethargic movements, but no odor of alcohol. The Defendant was asked out of the vehicle to perform roadside sobriety exercises by a DUI investigator and began to stumble around. During the roadside exercises, which were captured on video, the Defendant appeared extremely impaired and unsteady and actually had appeared to be falling asleep. The roadsides were not performed to standard and the Defendant was arrested for DUI. The Defendant submitted to a breat test and the results showed no consumption of alcohol. The Defendant then was asked to submit to a urine test which revealed a litany of chemical and controlled substances in his system including cocaine and heroin and the metabolites for each. Meltzer & Bell was retained and prepared for trial. The Deposition or sworn statement of Officer Reyka was taken in preparation for trial. During the deposition the Office testified that he has no recollection of his stop of the client’s vehicle and what he did remember would not justify a stop of the Defendant’s vehicle. The firm filed a Motion ro Suppress the traffic stop based upon the Officer’s testimony during his deposition. The State was going to have him testify that the Officer got him mixed up with another arrestee with the same last name. Meltzer & Bell requested a copy of the police report of the person who was mixed up with our client. That report reflected that the arrestee in that case was a smaller black male (our client was 6’5″, 270lbs. and white) and that the Officer responded to a traffic crash in that case, thus, no traffic stop at all.

            Outcome: Once presented with this evidence, the State DROPPED the DUI charge.

          • Charges: Driving Under the Influence (DUI) Crash

            Case #: 16-19XXMUXXX

            Facts: The Defendant caused a head on collision on the wrong side of the road. The Defendant was seated on the curb at the time law enforcement arrived. Officers noticed that the Defendant had an odor of an alcoholic beverage, red and watery eyes and balance issues. The Defendant was asked to do roadside exercises and performed poorly. The Defendant was arrested for DUI by a Broward Sheriff’s Office DUI Task Force member and submitted to a breath test that resulted in readings of .114/.105. Meltzer & Bell filed a Motion to Suppress the detention for roadside exercises, the arrest and the breath test based upon the fact that no officer saw the Defendant driving or in actual physical control of a vehicle as required by law, not even through the fellow officer rule.

            Outcome: The Motion was GRANTED and the DUI Charges were DISMISSED by the State of Florida.

          • Charges: DUI Crash

            Case #: 13-2XXX2MXXXA

            Facts: The alleged victim was taken to the hospital before law enforcement arrived on the scene. The Defendant was standing outside of his vehicle upon the officers arrival. The defendant exhibited severe unsteadiness, slurred speech and reeked from an odor of alcohol. The Defendant was asked to perform Roadside Sobriety Exercises to which he did and performed very poorly. The Defendant was arrested for DUI causing property damage and personal injury. The Defendant refused a breath test after his arrest, but participated in Roadside Sobriety Exercises which were captured on video back at the police station. This video depicted the defendant to be extremely impaired and unable to walk.

            Outcome: Meltzer & Bell took depositions of the victim of the crash as well as all investigating officers. After the depositions, Meltzer & Bell filed a Motion to Suppress the unlawful detention of the defendant for the first set of Roadside Sobriety Exercises based on the fact that the arresting officer never saw our client behind the wheel of the vehicle coupled with the fact that he never spoke with the witness as to the identity of the driver of the vehicle at the time of the crash. The State Attorney’s Office conceded the issue and dismissed the DUI charges.

          • Charges: Driving Under the Influence

            Case #: 14-X5XXMUX0A

            Facts: The Defendant was arrested for DUI. The officer’s probable cause affidavit was inaccurate and the breathalyzer readings did not match from the affidavit to the complaint. The officer was found to have filed a police report that was riddled with inconsistencies in that it appeared as though the information contained within the report was “cut and pasted” from another report. As a matter of fact, the report also reflected that the Defendant’s breath results were .114 and .113 when they were, in fact, below the legal limit. The report also reflected that the Defendant was a male, when, in fact, she was a female.

            Outcome: This information was presented to the chief prosecutor in charge of DUI case filing and it was agreed that the case would not be filed. Accordingly, the Defendant was never charged with any crime pursuant to the efforts of Meltzer & Bell.

          • Charges: Driving Under the Influence

            Case #: 14-3XX16XUXXA

            Facts: Meltzer & Bell defended a law student who was scheduled to graduate from law school. The Defendant was stopped for speeding at 58 MPH in a 45 MPH zone. The officer attempted to stop the vehicle by activating his emergency lights, however the vehicle continued at a very slow speed for about five blocks before finally pulling over. The officer approached our client, who was seated in the drivers seat, and requested his driver’s license. The defendant fumbled with his documentation and at the same time the officer noticed an odor of an alcoholic beverage coming from the vehicle and the defendant’s facial area. The defendant also refused to answer simple questions about his driver’s license and where he was coming from that evening. The officer also continued to notice that the defendant’s eyes were watery and bloodshot and that his speech was heavily slurred to the point that he could not form complete sentences.

            Upon exiting the vehicle, the defendant nearly fell to the ground and while walking toward the officer’s squad car he stumbled at least two times and nearly fell down. The defendant was requested to perform Roadside Sobriety Exercises, even after being warned that it might result in his arrest. The defendant was arrested for DUI and refused to submit to a breath test. While being transported to the jail, the defendant became belligerent and was cursing at the officer and was unable to hold a steady conversation with the officer.

            Outcome: The defendant was charged by the State. Meltzer & Bell prepared the case and found evidence that the events as described to the officer were heavily exaggerated. As a result of this evidence, all charges were dropped.

          • Charges: Driving Under the Influence

            Case #: X2-XX968XMMXXA

            Facts: The Defendant was stopped for running a red light and speeding across 14th Street Causeway in Pompano Beach, Florida. Upon being stopped by a former DUI Task Force Officer, the Defendant was observed by the officer to have a strong odor of an alcoholic beverage; blood shot eyes, and a slow and lethargic gait as he exited his vehicle. Based on those observations and the driving pattern, the stopping officer called Deputy Clifton a veteran of the BSO DUI Task Force to the Scene. Deputy Clifton observations and investigation was captured on his in-car-video camera and observed the same observations as the initial stopping officer and requested that the Defendant perform roadside sobriety exercises. Immediately, the Defendant became irate and began to curse and scream and state that the was not going to do the roadside exercises no matter what and that the officer should “Fuck himself”. The Defendant was asked to do the breath test and refused that as well.

            Outcome: Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was asked by another law firm to act as trial counsel by another law firm. During trial, Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was able to show that these officers were not being truthful as to their observations as the DUI Investigator was repeatedly impeached by prior sworn contrary testimony that our firm had obtained. Additionally, Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was able to show that information about what was going on with the Defendant was withheld by the officers and that was the reason for his anger. The Defendant was found NOT GUILTY by a JURY in 9 minutes!!!!

          • Charges: DUI Enhanced

            Case #: 15-3XXXMUXXX

            Facts: FHP was notified by a concerned caller that our client was driving recklessly on Florida’s Turnpike and was unable to control her vehicle and was continuously weaving. The trooper stopped the vehicle and approached. The Defendant rolled the window down and the officer immediately noticed the odor of an alcoholic beverage; a flushed face; bloodshot eyes; and slurred speech. The Defendant admitted to coming from a party where she had consumed several beers. The Defendant was asked to perform roadside exercises and did so poorly. She repeatedly almost fell to the ground on several occasions and was impaired to the point where the officer had to discontinue the exercises. The Defendant agreed to submit to a test of her breath that resulted in readings of .202/.210 g/210 L, well over Florida’s legal limit of .08. Meltzer and Bell, P.A. was retained and conducted discovery.

            Outcome: The State agreed to exclude the breath results as evidence as the Breath Test Operator had been arrested on Federal Identity Fraud charges. Additionally, Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was able to prove to the State the video pertinent to the case was also fatally flawed and the Judge would be likely to exclude the video upon filing a motion, which was about to happen. The State dropped the DUI charges.

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      Domestic Violence Allegations

          • Charges: Felony Battery by Strangulation

            Case #: 15-XXXXXCXXXX

            Facts: the Defendant was accused of grabbing the mother of his two children by the throat and choking her after an argument. He also smashed the television and threw it toward his wife. He was choking her, the Defendant pulled his fist back as to punch her. Meltzer & Bell performed discovery and prepared for trial.

            Outcome: On the day of the trial the State DISMISSED all charges.

          • Charges: Domestic Battery

            Case #: 15-3XXXMMXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was accused of forcefully grabbing the mother of his child’s forearms against her will and pushing her while in his vehicle. This was a delayed report. Meltzer & Bell took depositions of the essential witnesses in the case. During deposition, Meltzer & Bell presented the investigating officer with text messages with the alleged victim showing that the alleged victim was being untruthful in her account of what happened.

            Outcome: After being confronted with the text messages, the officer admitted that she would not have made the arrest had she known about the texts. The State DISMISSED all charges.

          • Charges: Felony Domestic Battery by Strangulation

            Case #: 15-XXXXXFXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was accused of being intoxicated after drinking all day and strangling her girlfriend with a plastic Publix Bag. The victim had numerous marks on her neck to corroborate the victim’s claim of strangulation. Our client was alleged to have said “You don’t think I’ll do it to you and if you call the police I will do it ten times worse”. Meltzer & Bell was retained and prepared for trial.

            Outcome: On the day of trial the State DISMISSED all charges.

          • Charges: Battery

            Case #: 16-00XXXXXMXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was accused of striking his 14 year-old stepson after an argument over family issues. The Defendant was accused of punching his stepson in the back of his head and on the left side of his face. Upon police making contact with the boy who had run out of his home, they noticed the boy crying and visible injury under his eye and on his cheek which corroborated the Boy’s story. Meltzer & Bell was retained immdediately after the incident and commenced an investigation.

            Outcome: After Meltzer & Bell‘s work NO charges were filed against the Defendant.

          • Charges: Felony Domestic Violence By Strangulation

            Case #:14-15XXXCFXXA

            Facts: The defendant was charged with felony domestic violence by strangulation.

            Outcome: Through the skilled efforts of Meltzer & Bell, the case was ultimately plead out to a misdemeanor with no additional jail time. This was only done through the use of the discovery tools that were given to the defense team wherein Meltzer & Bell were able to see that the damages complained of by the wife were non existent and that they were portraying the defendant in a negative light that was also inaccurate.

          • Charges: Domestic Violence – Aggravated Assault

            Case #:14-15XXXCFXXA

            Facts: The Defendant was at her home with her husband and a fight ensued over dinner. The fight escalated and became physical to the extent that our client allegedly and repeatedly swung a large gardening tool at the head of her husband. During this altercation, the office within the home was destroyed as was the home compute rand there was evidence consistent with the allegation that our client did in fact assault her husband with a deadly weapon.

            Outcome: Meltzer & Bell performed a pre-filing investigation and handed over affidavits and photographs that placed these allegations into question and no charges were ever filed against our client.

          • Charges: Injunction Against Domestic Violence Hearing

            Case #: DVCE 1X-5XX2

            Facts: Our client was romantically involved with the Petitioner. Their relationship ended badly. After the break-up, the petitioner obtained employment as a waiter at a restaurant that our client frequented with her family, even before she had met the petitioner. The Defendant sought a permanent injunction against our client citing the fact that “she was going to his job to harass post break-up and because of things that she has done and said previously in our relationship.” He also stated that “she has physically attacked me during a verbal argument and hit me with her fists.”

            Outcome: Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was retained to represent the Defendant to prevent this permanent injunction from being imposed and place on her criminal record. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. attended the hearing on our client’s behalf and the petition for injunction for stalking was dismissed.

          • Charges: Injunction Against Repeat Violence Hearing

            Case #: DVCE 1X-4XX1

            Facts: Meltzer & Bell, P.A. represented our client at an evidentiary hearing that would determine if a permanent and final injunction would be entered against him in favor of his former business partner and ex- girlfriend. The ex-girlfriend accused our client of stalking and cyberstalking by creating a fake Facebook page and sending e-mails to her business e-mail address under the guise of a female.

            Outcome: Meltzer & Bell, P.A. Defended our client at the evidentiary hearing and vigorously cross-examined the Defendant’s former business partner and girlfriend and proved that she had no evidence that the Facebook page was at all connected to or owned by our client and that she had no idea who had sent the e-mails to work e-mail address. Additionally, it was shown that the client and girlfriend had not seen each other since the day the broke up in early May of this year. The Petition for Injunction was summarily DISMISSED by the court.

          • Charges: Injunction against Repeat Violence Hearing

            Case #: DVCE 1X-3XX5

            Facts: Our client was served with a Petition for Injunction for Protection Against Repeat Violence. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was hired to Defend our client against this petition. The Petitioner, the former spouse of our client’s girlfriend, accused our client of threatening to set him on fire on more than one occasion. A hearing on the petition was scheduled for Monday, June 16, 2014.

            Outcome: At the hearing, Meltzer & Bell, P.A. immediately made a Motion to Dismiss the Petition based upon the fact that the Petition failed to allege any previous acts of violence committed by our client. Accordingly, the Court dismissed the Petition for Injunction for Repeat Violence against our client and the matter was summarily dismissed from the court system.

          • Charges: Domestic Battery

            Case #: 2015MM000570000AMR

            Facts: The Defendant was accused of a Domestic Violence Battery. The Defendant was in his bedroom watching a movie with his live-in girlfriend. She snatched hi phone from him because she was suspicious that he was texting another girl. The victim refused to return his phone and he then grabbed her by the neck and stated “I am not playing with you”. The victim left the room and when she returned the door was locked. The Defendant unlocked the door and the victim claimed that she saw something shiny, possibly a gun on the bed. The victim stated that she actually was not sure if she thought she saw a phone or a gun. Neither the Defendant nor the victim had any marks or scratches or injuries indicating that there was any sort of fight or scuffle. The victim had no marks on her neck indicating that the Defendant put his hand on her throat nor did the Defendant have defensive wounds.

            Outcome: Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was retained and immediately began a pre-trial investigation. Evidence gathered by the Defense was presented to the State Attorney. Shortly thereafter, the State dismissed the case.

            Charges: Domestic Violence Battery

            Case #: Out of Custody Investigation

            Facts: The police were called when the Defendant was alleged to have hit his niece and slammed her against a couch. The Defendant was not present when the police arrived and our client’s niece told the officer that she was attacked. There was an independent witness present during the altercation, the alleged victim’s grandfather. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was retained and our office immediately brought the grandfather in to give a sworn taped statement to our investigator.

            Outcome: We immediately provided a large amount of information to the State Attorney in charge of the filing decision, including the taped statement indicating that our client was not the initial aggressor. History of the alleged victim was revealed to the State. After almost 45 days of review, the State of Florida declined to file any criminal charges against our client.

          • Charges: Domestic Battery

            Case #: Open Investigation Out of Custody

            Facts: The Defendant was attacked and his girlfriend’s daughter was taken into custody for battery. After the mother attempted to pick her up from juvenile custody, she came home and began arguing with our client. She alleged that our client got up and shoved her into the wall and attacked her. Officers came back to the house after they had been there just three hours earlier to arrest the daughter. Pictures were taken both times, with now new injuries on our client that were not present the first time.

            Outcome: Meltzer & Bell, P.A. made phone calls to all potential witnesses in the case including the officers. We provided all of this information to the State Attorneys office including testimony that we anticipated from witnesses who were familiar with the motives behind the girlfriend’s allegations. We were able to convince the State Attorney that our client was not the primary aggressor and that he, in fact, was a potential victim in the matter. The State of Florida declined to file charges for Domestic Battery.

            Charges: Injunction Hearing Domestic Violence

            Case #: DVCE X6-XXX

            Facts: Defendant was accused of several acts of violence after a break-up with his live-in girlfriend. Shortly after the break-up, our client walked in on his ex-girlfriend having sex with another man in his son’s bed. The two were still tied in a lease after the break-up for another 60 days. Thereafter, our client threatened to kill her and vowed to make his life miserable. That night he took her cell phone from her and smashed her cell phone. He kept waking her up every two hours and even was accused of masturbating on her bed as she slept and throwing water on her.

            Outcome: Meltzer & Bell, P.A., was retained and attended the hearing. The injunction was dismissed.


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      Property and Theft Crime

          • Charges: Grand Theft and Violation of Probation

            Case #: 19-005671CF10A; 17-007239CF10A

            Facts:

            The Defendant was charged with Grand Theft of a Motor Vehicle and Violation of Probation.  Police received a call of “suspicious activity” reported by somebody over the phone.  They detained the Defendant at gun-point, physically removed him from his vehicle, and immediately began to search his vehicle. Police found no evidence to support the reported suspicious activity. Despite this, they continue to detain the Defendant and began to investigate the vehicle itself.  After allegedly finding out that the vehicle was reported stolen out of Hollywood six weeks prior, police arrested the Defendant for Grand Theft of the Motor Vehicle and Violation of his Probation.

            When the Defendant hired Stephan Dobrinsky from Meltzer & Bell, PA, he was being held in jail without bond and with no end in sight.  Immediately after being retained, Mr. Dobrinsky began investigating the case, working with the Defendant and his family to prove that when Defendant purchased this vehicle, he could not have known it was stolen. Mr. Dobrinsky then prepared an in-depth Motion to Suppress any evidence in the case, demonstrating how the police were acting unlawfully both when they detained the Defendant without reasonable suspicion, and when they proceeded to search the vehicle without probable cause.

            Outcome: Soon after the filing of that Motion to Suppress, the State Attorney’s Office agreed to dismiss both the new charge of Grand Theft as well as the warrant for Violation of Probation. The Defendant was released immediately.

          • Charges: Petit Theft

            Case #: 16-XXXXXXXXXX

            Facts: The Defendant entered a Target Superstore in Lauderhill, Florida. He entered the electronics department and began removing items from their packaging and placing the items in the front pocket of his pants. Loss prevention officers were monitoring the Defendant as he did this. The Defendant past all points of sale without paying for the items and was stopped by loss prevention as he exited the store. The Defendant was cited for petit theft. Meltzer & Bell prepared for trial.

            Outcome: All charges were DISMISSED.

          • Charges: Petit Theft

            Case #: 16XXXXXXMXXXX

            Facts: The Defendant entered Kohl’s department store. As she walked through the store she began to select several women’s make-up products and placing them inside of her purse. The Defendant then walked out of the Store without paying for the items. This was all captured on CCTV. The Defendant was stopped by a loss prevention officer and issued a written arrest. Meltzer & Bell was retained and prepared for trial.

            Outcome: The State DISMISSEDall charges.

          • Charges: Grand Theft

            Case #: 16-XXXXXFXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was accused of going into Kohl’s and removing merchandise unlawfully in excess of $300,000. T he Defendant was accused based on her vehicle being present at the scene of the crime. Our client adamantly claimed she had been misidentified by witnesses based upon her vehicle being present on the scene. Meltzer & Bell was retained and obtained evidence that demonstrated that her car was loaned to a male friend who had gone to the store with his girlfriend at the time. It was this person that stole the items. Evidence of the car loan was given to the State that our client’s car was, in fact, loaned to a friend and that the description of the perpetrator of this crime did not match our client’s appearance, but the description of her hair color.

            Outcome: The State DISMISSED all charges.

          • Charges: Injunction Hearing for Permenant Injunction Against Stalking

            Case #: DXXE1-XXXX

            Facts: Our client retained Meltzer & Bell to Defendant him against a petition for a permanent injunction against stalking brought by a neighbor in his community. Our client was a member of a homeowner association board in Deerfield Beach, Florida. A member of the homeowner’s who was in serious arrears on his HOA Dues and who was repeatedly violating rules of the association brought a petition for injunction against our client for trying to enforce the rules of the association in accordance with his duties as a board member. Meltzer & Bell prepared for and attended the hearing. Arguments were made on behalf of both parties.

            Outcome: The court DISMISSED the Petition for Injuction brought against our client for stalking and admonished the petitioner.

          • Charges: Petit Theft

            Case #: 16-7XXMMXXX

            Facts: The Defendant entered Wal-Mart in Coral Springs and selected several clothing items for small children in her purse. The Defendant’s actions were observed by a civilian and loss prevention witness. The Defendant admitted to taking the items and not paying for them.

            Outcome: All charges were DISMISSED.

          • Charges: Petit Theft

            Case #: 15-1XXXMMXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was a Wal-Mart employee and went to use the restroom inside Wal=Mart. The victim was also in the restroom. The victim accidentally left the restroom without her purse. The Defendant took her purse and left the restroom and walked out of the store. The Defendant was seen on security footage entering the store with nothing in her hands and leaving with a black purse. The Defendant was called back to Wal-Mart based on her identification as the Wal-Mart Employee who was seen on the video. The Defendant responded back to the Store and confessed to stealing the purse. The Defendant was originally charged with Grand Theft, however Meltzer & Bell was able to have the charge reduced to Petit Theft after pre-filing-investigation.

            Outcome: All charges were DISMISSED.

          • Charges: Burglary of a Dwelling (Felony), Battery (3rd Degree Felony)

            Case #: 1X0X6CFXXA

            Facts: The Defendant was charged with Burglary of a Dwelling, a felony punishable by life, and Felony Battery, a felony of the third degree. The Defendant and her boyfriend were accused of breaking into the victims home and rushing up the stairs and repeatedly punching her in the face and stomping her back and torso and leaving holes in the walls. The Defendant and her boyfriend then fled the scene and returned home. The victims injuries were photographed and the defendant and her boyfriend had fresh wounds and lacerations to their hands. The Defendant’s boyfriend also spontaneously made a statement that indicated that they had been in the Defendant’s home that night and that they knew the victim was in her home. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was retained.

            Outcome: Upon being retained, the firm immediately filed a Motion to Release our client from custody during which she was held with “No Bond”. The Court granted our Motion for Release despite the Defendant being on Federal post-prison supervision at the time of this offense. The firm began investigating the case and put together several witnesses who signed affidavits that our client was very friendly with the victim to the extent that she actually resided at the victim’s home on many nights and was given free reign. The victim had her own keys to victim’s residence and her security codes for the victim’s alarm.

            Additionally, Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was able to produce text messages from the victim to the Defendant that the Defendant and her boyfriend were loved by the victim and that they were always welcome in the home anytime. The Defendant was also entrusted with the victim’s American Express Card, diamond jewelry and cash so that the victim’s “friends” would not steal from her while she was high on drugs. Several witnesses were made available to the State and affidavits pertaining to the Defendant’s relationship with the victim and to her ability to enter the victim’s home were also presented as well as many text messages indicating that the victim may have been less than truthful with the police. The State dropped all felony charges against the Defendant.

          • Charges: Petty Theft

            Case #: 14-15XX8MMXXA

            Facts: The Defendant was seen removing merchandise from a department store and was stopped by Loss Prevention. At the time of being stopped she had sunglasses and other merchandise that was not paid for, before she exited the store.

            Outcome: After skillful negotiations between the state and Meltzer & Bell, this case was ultimately dismissed.

          • Charges: Petty Theft

            Case #: 14-XXXMMXXA

            Facts: The Defendant was caught by loss prevention at Kohl’s removing $27.40 worth of merchandise. She gave a statement that she was sorry for attempting to steal it.

            Outcome: After successful negotiations with the state attorney’s office, Meltzer & Bell was able to get all charges dismissed.

          • Charges: Petty Theft

            Case #: 2014XM3XXX0

            Facts: Defendant was charged with Petty Theft after being stopped by Loss Prevention of a department store in Miami-Dade County.

            Outcome: Meltzer & Bell received discovery, prepared a defense and announced ready for trial. The case was dismissed at the time of trial.

          • Charges: Burglary w/ Intent to Commit Battery

            Case #: 14-000XXXXX10A

            Facts: The Defendant was charged with Burglary with the intent to commit Battery, a first degree felony charged punishable by LIFE in prison. The Defendant was accused of going to her lover’s apartment; kicking the door in and punching her lover’s girlfriend in the face and causing a laceration. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was retained and immediately began an investigation. The firm attended the Client’s bond hearing on the morning after her arrest and was able to secure a bond for the Defendant to be released even though this crime is a “No Bond” offense. After the Defendant was released, the firm met with the client and was able to gather important information that was to be used in her defense.

            Outcome: Immediately thereafter, Meltzer & Bell, P.A. immediately began to work with the Office of the State Attorney and disclosed information gathered as a result of its investigation that the State Attorney’s Office was unaware of. The firm was able to point out that the alleged victim’s possessed obvious motivations to embellish; that the officers failed to investigate the scene of the crime competently and that the physical evidence in the police reports contradicted the officer’s conclusion that the defendant committed this life felony, The evidence actually reflected that the Defendant was defending herself from an attack by the lover’s girlfriend and that the Defendant was, at all times, authorized to enter her lover’s apartment as she had been sexually involved with him just 24 hours earlier in that apartment. The State Attorney’s Office declined filing formal charges and the firm was able to save her teaching career as a result of the investigation of Meltzer & Bell, P.A.

          • Charges: Petit Theft

            Case #: 14-000XX1MM1XA

            Facts: The Defendant was caught red-handed by loss prevention after leaving a store with property valued at less than $100.00. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. attended the Defendant’s first court date with the Defendant.

            Outcome: Shortly thereafter, the State dismissed all charges.


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      Sexual Offenses

          • Charges: Video Voyeurism

            Case #: 18CF0XXX3APK

            Facts: The defendant was charged with video voyeurism based on a cell phone being found in the bathroom. During questioning, he admitted to putting the phone in the bathroom in hopes of catching someone changing their clothes. Meltzer & Bell filed a motion to dismiss since the victim in the case was only washing her hands when she discovered the phone. Based on a review of our motion, the State dismissed the case without a hearing being necessary and filed a nolle prosse on March 19, 2019.

            Outcome: The State DISMISSED all charges.

          • Charges: Solicitation of Prostitution

            Case #: 16-8XXXMMXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was accused of soliciting a prostitute for sex for $20.00. He is 35 years of age and developmentally disabled, bipolar and has been on state assistance due to developmental disability since a young age. The Defendant’s life is run by his parents and he likes to speak with everyone. The Officers failed to put any of this in their reports. Evidence was shown to the State confirming the Defendant’s disabilities and his need for assistance. It was also shown that the Officers were unsure of the Defendant’s intent at the time of this alleged offense because of his disability. The Defendant would have been forced to pay $5,000.00 civil fine and would have been subjected to an HIV test if he pled or was convicted of this offense.

            Outcome: The State DISMISSED all charges.

          • Charges: Unlawful Sexual Activity with a Minor

            Case #: Open Investigation (St. Lucie County)

            Facts: Our client and his family was contacted by a detective regarding an unlawful sexual activity with a minor. After being retained, our firm immediately contacted the St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Office to not only immediately speak with the Detective but also to obtain relevant information regarding the charges.

            Outcome: A written invocation of our client’s 5th and 6th Amendment Right to remain silent and counsel was faxed to the Sheriff’s Department directly to the Detective. After receiving it, the detective called our office and had a conference with Meltzer & Bell, P.A.  After discussions with the Detective, no further criminal actions would be taken and no criminal charges would be presented to a judge.  Without further conversations with our client, and pursuant to our invocation of his rights, the charges would not proceed.


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      White Collar Crime and Fraud

          • Charges: Unemployment Compensation Fraud

            Case #: 15-5644CF10A

            Facts: The Defendant was charged with Unemployment Compensation Fraud, a third degree felony. The alleged fraud was discovered by the Department of Economic Opportunity on December 3, 2012. The state formally charged the Defendant by Information on April 30, 2015, did not serve him with the document necessary to bring him under the jurisdiction of the courts until December 10, 2016, just outside the 3-year statute of limitations that would have enable prosecution. Meltzer & Bell filed a motion to Dismiss based on a violation of the Statute of Limitations.

            Outcome: The State conceded the motion and all charges were DISMISSED.

          • Charges: Unlawful Possession of Personal Identification

            Case #: 14-XX820CFXXX

            Facts: The defendant was charged with possessing credit cards and identification that belonged to other individuals that resided in Jamaica. It was unknown to law enforcement that these people actually existed, or where they resided.

            Outcome: Meltzer & Bell conducted a thorough examination of the facts and obtained proof from the people that the cards were issued to that the defendant was entitled to have possession of the cards and that he could use them to make purchases in their names. Once that information was presented to law enforcement and to the State Attorney’s office, the charges were dismissed against the defendant. It took an exceptional amount of time and effort performed by the lawyers and Meltzer & Bell to do the research, contact the individuals and obtain the necessary documentation to prevent the charges from being filed.


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      Firearm Crimes

          • Charges: Aggravated Battery With A Deadly Weapon, Aggravated Assault With A Deadly Weapon

            Case #: 15-X3X2CFX0A

            Facts: The Defendant was charged with Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon and Aggravated Battery with a Deadly Weapon after allegedly striking his wife with a broken beer bottle in his home office. These crimes were punishable by a maximum 15 years in prison. The firm of Meltzer & Bell, P.A. received the case and immediately began a pre-filing investigation.

            Outcome: Meltzer & Bell, P.A. provided an audio recording of the entire episode as well as pictures reflecting that our client was the victim of an assault by his wife. Based on our Firm’s efforts, the State Attorney’s Office declined to file any charges against our client.

          • Charges: Carrying Concealed Firearm

            Case #: 13XX53X3CFXXA

            Facts: The Defendant was approached by an Officer from the Miramar Police Department after a friend of his ran out into the middle of traffic without explanation. As the officer approached the Defendant, he reached into his waist band and was trying to remove a black object which was fully loaded and had a round in the firing chamber. The Defendant was ordered at gunpoint by the officer to show his hands, but refused, ran around to the passenger side of the car and threw the fully loaded Glock firearm toward the center console of the vehicle and was the only item in the vehicle where the Defendant seemed to have aimed for.

            Outcome: Meltzer &Bell, P.A. prepared to take this case to trial and took the deposition of the arresting officer. During the deposition, the officer testified that she approached the Defendant with her firearm drawn and commanded him not to move, but was unaware as to what this black object was did not suspect him of any wrongdoing at the time. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. presented case law to the State Attorney prior to trial standing for the proposition that the officers act in commanding him not to move without suspicion of criminal activity may have been unlawful. Additionally, case law was presented reflecting that there was an issue as to concealment of the firearm based upon the fact the officer could see the “black object”. On the day of trial, the State dropped the felony carrying concealed firearm charge.

          • Charges: Aggravated Assault with a Firearm

            Case #: 1X-XX54XCFXXA

            Facts: The Defendant was charged with Aggravated Assault with a Firearm, which carries a mandatory minimum prison sentence of 3 years. The Defendant went out to a bar with his girlfriend in the City of Fort Lauderdale. Later in the evening, the Defendant decided to leave the bar. However, his girlfriend remained there and became extremely intoxicated. A cab was called for the girlfriend, however, she was too intoxicated to give the cab driver proper directions to our clients residence. The cab driver drove around for about 35 minutes, but couldn’t find the residence. The Defendant’s girlfriend tried calling the Defendant to get the proper directions while intoxicated, but was unable to speak and hung up her phone. The girlfriend then handed her phone to the cab driver to call the Defendant for directions to the house.

            The cab driver was of Haitian descent and told the Defendant in broken English that he “ had his girlfriend” and was bringing her home. This scared the Defendant as he did not know or understand who had called him. The Defendant retrieved his firearm and waited in his front yard for the arrival of this man with his girlfriend. Finally, the cab arrived and the Defendant removed his girlfriend from the vehicle. An argument ensued between the cabdriver and the Defendant over the cab fare. The Defendant was still angry that it took over 45 minutes to arrive at his home that was within a few blocks of the bar and told the cab driver to get away from his residence. The Defendant also pulled up his shirt to reveal he had a firearm and threatened to kill the cab driver if he didn’t leave. The cab driver left and immediately called the police.

            NA investigation ensued and the Defendant was arrested for Aggravated Assault with a Firearm. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. vigorously defended this case.

            Outcome: Through depositions, the firm was able to expose several weaknesses in the State’s case. First, the firm established that the investigating officers never took a firearm into evidence, nor did they try to secure a warrant to search the home for it. Additionally, it was shown that the Defendant never touched the gun or removed it from his waistband and that his statement that he owned a gun that was described by the cab driver was made without Miranda Rights being read. Also, the depositions taken by the firm exposed severe problems with the show-up identification and the investigation itself. After, bringing these issues to the State’s attention, the State dropped the felony charge and the Defendant was not convicted of any crime.

          • Charges: Carrying Concealed Firearm

            Case #: 1X01XX00CXX0A

            Facts: The Defendant was stopped for having an unlawful tag assigned to the vehicle by officers from the Plantation Police Department. The Defendant was asked out of the vehicle. The officer advised our client that he would be towing the vehicle as it was unregistered and the tag was unlawful. The officer then asked the Client if there was anything inside the vehicle that he should know about. The Defendant then alerted the officer that he had a loaded firearm in his waistband and did not have a permit to lawfully carry a firearm. He also stated that there was another magazine for the firearm under the driver’s seat. The Defendant was only issued a citation for the unlawful tag at the time of this incident.

            However, subsequent to this incident, the officer submitted his paperwork reflecting the issues surrounding the firearm to the State Attorneys’ office unbeknownst to the Client and an out of custody warrant for the felony charge of carrying concealed firearm was issued for his arrest.

            Outcome: As soon as the firm found out about the warrant, Meltzer & Bell, P.A. immediately filed a Motion to Vacate the warrant, which would have required our client to be placed in custody indefinitely and would have certainly jeopardized his case. The Motion was granted and the warrant was immediately recalled. After investigating the case, Meltzer & Bell, P.A. provided information to the State concerning the firearm. The information demonstrated that the firearm was somewhat of an antique and was left to him by his Grandfather at the time of his death. The “antique nature of the firearm actually worked in our client’s favor and is an exception to the crime that the Defendant was charged with. After receiving this information, the State dropped all felony charges relating to the firearm and our client was not convicted of any crime. The unlawful tag was also dismissed. The firearm charge exposed our client to five years in prison.


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      Probation Violation

          • Charges: Violation of Probation

            Case #: 15001671CF10A

            Facts:

            While on probation for Aggravated Battery, the Defendant was arrested on three separate occasions in two different counties. The arrests were for misdemeanor domestic battery, driving on a suspended license with leaving the scene of an accident, and felony drug possession. In total, there were seven different allegations as to how he violated his probation. The Defendant was facing a minimum sentence of nearly 3 years in prison, and a potential maximum punishment of 15 years in prison. To make matters worse, he was being held in jail without the possibility of bond.

            Outcome: Stephan Dobrinsky worked swiftly and diligently on the case so to devise a plan that would avoid any prison time and get the Defendant reinstated on his probation and released from jail. Despite the numerous violations, the Defendant was soon released from custody and reinstated on his probation. The new misdemeanor domestic battery was dropped.

          • Charges: Violation of Probation

            Case #: 14XXXXXCFXXX – 13XXXXXCFXXX

            Facts: The Defendant was exposed to 10 years Florida State Prison for violating his probation after removing himself from a halfway house that her was previously court ordered to remain at. Meltzer & Bell was retained and presented to the court that the halfway house that the Defendant was staying at was intentionally driving up the monthly’ rent prices to the point where the Defendant could not afford to remain. Additionally, the halfway house was not using the rents to maintain the premises as contracted.

            Outcome: Evidence was shown to the judge proving our client’s allegations against the halfway house and the violation of probation was DISMISSED.

          • Charges: Violation of Probation, Driving Under the Influence

            Case #: 14-X31XX5MXXXA

            Facts: The Defendant was on probation for a period of 6 months for a first offense of DUI in Broward County, Florida and was exposed to 180 days in jail. The Defendant violated that probation by committing a second DUI offense in Palm Beach County, Florida during the 5th month of his DUI probation. The Defendant hired Meltzer & Bell, P.A. in regard to the violation of probation based on the new arrest for DUI.

            Outcome: Meltzer & Bell, P.A. immediately filed a Motion for In Court Surrender, which allowed the Defendant to address his violation of probation in court without surrendering to the jail on the warrant. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was able to resolve the violation of probation before the judge without the Defendant seeing one day in jail. The Defendant’s probation was immediately reinstated despite having committed a second DUI offense within one year.

          • Charges: Violation of Probation

            Case #: 09-7XXXCF1XA

            Facts: The Defendant was on probation for a term of 5 years for the offense of Grand Theft. The Defendant was alleged to have violated that probation by committing new criminal offenses of Driving While License Suspended, Unlawful License/Tag Attached, and having an Expired Driver’s License. The Defendant also was untruthful with his probation officer about being cited for the new traffic offenses. A Violation of Probation Warrant was issued for the Defendant’s arrest and he was taken into custody and held without bond.

            Outcome: Meltzer & Bell. P.A. attended the violation of probation hearing on the Defendant’s behalf. The Defendant was exposed to 5 years in prison if found in violation of probation and would have become a convicted felon. It should be noted that the Defendant had failed to pay almost $18,000.00 in restitution that had been previously ordered by the court. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was able have the Defendant’s probation reinstated and prevented the Defendant from becoming a convicted felon and he was released from jail the very same day.

          • Charges: Violation of Probation

            Case #: 04-XX8XCFX0A

            Facts: The Defendant was originally charged with Burglary with Intent to Commit a Battery, a crime punishable by life in prison. In 2004, the Defendant was sentenced to 8 years in Florida State Prison followed by 5 years of probation in 2004. The Defendant violated his probation in 2014 by being arrested on new felony charges of Possession of Heroin, Possession of Cocaine, Tampering with Evidence and Resisting an Officer with Violence. This arrest was actually the Defendant’s second violation of probation. The Defendant was facing a minimum sentence of 75 months in Florida State Prison up to LIFE in prison.

            Outcome: Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was hired and immediately began addressing the validity of the traffic stop and the new law violation with the State Attorney’s Office. After discussing the case with the case filing unit of the State Attorney, Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was able to convince the State to drop the Resisting With Violence Charge as they appeared to be severely exaggerated in the police reports. This was especially significant as this prevented the Defendant from being labeled a Prison Release Re-Offender. Such a classification results in enhanced and severe mandatory prison sentences and career criminal classification.

            The Violation of Probation Hearing came before the court on March 18, 2014. Meltzer & Bell was able to negotiate a new 2 year community control sentence without any further jail or prison sentence! The firm was a able to do so even though the Defendant was classifies as a violent felony offender, which does not allow a Defendant previously charged with a previous violent felony to be placed back on supervision by the court. Meltzer & Bell was able to do so as the firm convinced the State and he Judge that he was no longer a “danger” and should not be subject to this violent felony offender law. After the hearing, the Defendant was placed back onto community control supervision and he was able to go home and be with his daughter who was born one week earlier. The Defendant did not serve any further time in jail even though his criminal punishment code score-sheet required 75 months in prison up to life!!!!


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      Traffic Crimes

            • Charges: FLEEING AND ELUDING A POLICE OFFICER

              Case #: 17-7008CF10A

              Facts: Several officers of the Davie Police Department were conducting speed enforcement in Davie, Florida and observed the Defendant driving at 80 mph in a residential area and unlawfully passing other vehicles on a two-lane road. One of the officers stepped out into the roadway in an effort to stop the Defendant. The Defendant looked directly at the officer, revved the engine and drove past the officer and went to his home a short distance away where he was arrested for Fleeing and Eluding an Officer and Reckless Driving. Meltzer & Bell was able to demonstrate that the Defendant did not see the officer, but thought he actually was a construction worker as a new neighborhood was being built in that location.

              Outcome: The State dropped all felony charges.

            • Charges: Driving With a License Suspended

              Case #: 14-XXXXXXXXXXX, 15-XXXXXXXXXX

              Facts: The Defendant was charged in 2 separate cases with DWLS. Each of these charges exposed the Defendant to a 5-Year Habitual Offender Revocation. Meltzer & Bell researched the Defendant’s driving history and was able to instruct our client on how to reinstate his driving privileges. The Defendant was able to get his driver’s license reinstate based on the firm’s advice.

              Outcome: All DWLS charges were DISMISSED.

            • Charges: False Application for Driver’s License

              Case #: 11XXXXXX6

              Facts: The Defendant was accused of going into the DHSMV office in Tallahassee, Florida and applying for driver’s license on June 22, 2009. The State attorney’s office officially charged the Defendant on May 3, 2016, well outside the Statute of Limitations of three years. Meltzer & Bell was retained and immediately filed a Motion to Dismiss for a Violation of the Statute of Limitations. The State received the Motion and immediately conceded.

              Outcome: This felony case was DISMISSED.

            • Charges: Improper Lane Change with Serious Bodily Injury

              Case #: 16-1XXXXTXXXX

              Facts: The Defendant was charged with an improper lane change as he tried to navigate through the pylons heading southbound on I-95 in Hollywood. The Defendant hit a motorcycle driver who was thrown over the wall from the southbound lanes to the northbound lanes and was severely injuried with several broken bones and head injury. If the Defendant was found guilty of this infraction, his license would have been suspended for 90 days and would be subjected to a $500.00 fine. Meltzer & Bell prepared for a trial and retained an expert to disput law enforcement’s assessment of how the accident occured.

              Outcome: The infraction was DISMISSED.

            • Charges: Reckless Driving

              Case #: 15-4XXXCFXXX

              Facts: The Defendant was driving on the Florida Turnpike and witnessed a Plantation Officer speeding, changing lanes recklessly and tailgating other vehicles. The Defendant began to video tape the officer’s driving patterns with his cell phone camera. The Defendant was not speeding or driving recklessly in any way as the Defendant’s video shows him travelling at 72 mph in a 70 mph zone and maintaining his lane surrounded by other vehicles. Once the officer saw the Defendant videotaping his driving pattern he fabricated evidence in order to conduct a traffic stop on the Defendant. The Defendant’s video actually shows the officer’s vehicale ahead of the Defendant and then slow down in order to effect a traffic stop. Meltzer & Bell also ordered the Officer’s video camera which shows the officer pulling the car over and running to the Defendant’s vehicle and pulling him from the vehicle at gun point and arresting him.

              Outcome: This evidence was presented to the State and charges were immediately DISMISSED.

            • Charges: Leaving the Scene of an Accident

              Case #: 13-01XXX7TCXXA

              Facts: The Defendant was charged with Leaving the Scene of an Accident after crashing her Range Rover through a fence and landscaping of someone’s home. Officers arrived on the scene to find an empty car. Thereafter the homeowner was able to describe that she saw a female walking away from the vehicle and walking in a northernly direction. Officers began to comb the area for the driver and eventually found our client about a quarter mile from the scene.

              Outcome: Meltzer & Bell obtained discovery and took depositions of all of the officers involved in the crash investigation. After the depositions it became clear that no law enforcement officer, nor the civilian, could place the defendant behind the wheel at the time of the incident. All criminal charges were dropped.

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      Alcohol Offenses

          • Charges: Sale of Alcohol to a Minor

            Case #: 14-0XXX65MMXXA

            Facts: The Defendant and her husband are the owners of a convenience store located in Pompano Beach, Florida. The Defendant was working the cash register that day. The Department of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms was conducting an investigation into the store. ATF agents set up a sting for alcohol sales to minors and sent in a 16 year old informant to purchase beer. Without provocation, the young agent went to the beer case and removed a 16 ounce can of Budweiser beer and approached the Defendant at the register. The Defendant sold the 16-year old informant the beer in the presence of ATF agents and was subsequently issued a written arrest and Notice to Appear.

            Outcome: Meltzer & Bell investigated the case, reviewed all discovery and prepared the case for trial. All charges against the defendant were dropped.


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      Warrants and Citations

          • Charges: Failure to Respond to Boating Citation

            Case #: 11MM01X8XXAXX

            Facts: The Defendant was charged with a boating citation. Failing to respond to that citation resulted in a misdemeanor charge being filed by the Office of the State Attorney. A summons was issued and our client failed to appear at the arraignment. A warrant was issued for his arrest and the family retained Meltzer & Bell, P.A.

            Outcome: After being retained and after the boating citation was paid, the firm set the matter for a hearing in front of the assigned county court criminal judge. The State of Florida agreed to recall the warrant and dismissed the criminal charges.


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      Criminal Investigations

          • Investigation: Alleged Assault

            Facts: The accused was a professional football player in the National Football League and was playing pickup basketball at a local gym. While in the middle of a heated contest, there was an altercation that broke out between him and members of the other team.

            The other team was overzealous and aggressive in their style of play and things became more physical then they should have. At the end of the game our client was pulled down to the floor and had a battery committed upon him. In response, he defended himself by punching the aggressor twice in the mouth. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was retained to handle the investigation of this matter.

            Outcome: This case was not filed as a result of Meltzer & Bell’s representation of the accused at the preliminary stage of the matter with the questioning by law enforcement and subsequent discussions with the Assistant State Attorney. Meltzer & Bell were able to provide evidence to the State Attorney’s office that this was a matter of self defense and no charges were ever filed against our client.


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      Violent Crimes

        • Charges: False Imprisonment and Battery

          Case #: 16-2XXCFXXX

          Facts: The Defendant was charged with False Imprisonment and Battery. The Defendant entered a State Farm Insurance Agency in order to find out why he had not received a copy of a fifty million dollar insurance umbrella policy. The Defendant was invited into the private office of the owner of the insurance agency to discuss why he had not received his insurance policy, which he was entitled to under Florida Law. A verbal argument ensued and the Defendant was removed from the office by the owner’s husband. The Defendant left the office and was pulled over by police and ultimately arrested on felony charges. The Defendant was 73 years old and devoid of criminal history. Meltzer & Bell was hired immediately after the arrest and began a pre-filing investigation. An investigator was retained as well. During the investigation, it was discovered that the victim and her husband had filed a civil suit against our client and that the alleged victim had made accusations like this before. It was determined that the victim had in some way set our client up in order to sue him for money that she found out he had in his application for his umbrella policy. The investigator determined that the victim had done this before and that she nor her husband had any injury contrary to their claims.

          Outcome: NO CHARGES were filed by the state.

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