Drivers have been racing motor vehicles for several decades, but law enforcement agencies across the country have taken additional measures to address the increase in illegal street racing incidents in recent years. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) told CBS News in 2003 that at least 135 people died in accidents from possible races when “The Fast and the Furious”—the American film franchise heavily focused on illegal street racing—was first released in 2001, or almost twice as many as the year before.
Florida introduced its own street racing law in 2002, and the statute that was largely adopted from similar legislation enacted in other states has been routinely challenged for its constitutionality and vagueness. Many innocent people are charged with racing on a highway in Florida for committing alleged acts that are otherwise seemingly legal.
If you were arrested for allegedly racing on a highway in South Florida, it is in your best interest to immediately retain legal counsel. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. aggressively defends clients accused of traffic crimes in Plantation, Hollywood, Pompano Beach, Davie, Fort Lauderdale, Coral Springs, Miramar, Pembroke Pines, and many surrounding areas of Broward County.
Lawrence Meltzer and Steven Bell are experienced criminal defense lawyers in Fort Lauderdale who know how to attack state laws relating to illegal racing and fight to possibly get your criminal charges reduced or dismissed. Call (954) 716-8538 today to have our attorneys provide a complete evaluation of your case during a free, confidential consultation.
Florida Statute § 316.191(1) provides the following definitions as they relate to the crime of racing on highways:
Under Florida Statute § 316.191(2), people are prohibited from doing any of the following:
Violations of Florida Statute § 316.191(2) are all first-degree misdemeanor offenses punishable as follows:
People are also prohibited from being spectators at any prohibited drag races, and alleged violations are noncriminal traffic infractions punishable as moving violations.
Florida Statute § 316.191(5) also establishes that whenever a law enforcement officer determines that an alleged offender was engaged in a drag race or race, the officer not only can immediately arrest and take such person into custody, but can also have the alleged offender’s vehicle impounded for a period of 30 business days. The trial court can enter an order of impoundment or immobilization as a condition of incarceration or probation.
State v. Wells, 965 So.2d 834 (Fla. 4th DCA 2007) — Jamie Wells was charged with racing on highway under Florida Statute § 316.191 and filed a motion to dismiss challenging the constitutionality of the statute. The trial court granted his motion and found Florida Statute §316.191 unconstitutional on both vagueness and over-breadth grounds. On September 12, 2007, the Fourth District Court of Appeal affirmed in part and reversed in part, affirming as to vagueness and reversing and remanding as to overbreadth for the trial court to remove the overbreadth findings from its otherwise proper order finding Florida Statute §316.191 unconstitutional both facially and as applied and dismissing the racing on highway charge against Wells.
Florida Senate Bill 768 | 2010 Regular Session — The Florida Senate and House unanimously passed this bill in 2010, an act to be cited as the “Luis Rivera Ortega Street Racing Act,” in remembrance of the 15-year-old bicyclist killed by a man who was racing on a road in Central Florida when he lost control of his car and struck the teenager. The bill amended Florida’s street racing statute by increasing certain fines and driver’s license suspensions for violators. On this website, you can view the bill’s vote and text history.
Were you recently arrested for allegedly racing on a highway in Broward County? Do not say anything to authorities until you have legal representation. Contact Meltzer & Bell, P.A. as soon as possible.
Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorneys Lawrence Meltzer and Steven Bell represent individuals in communities all over South Florida, including Wilton Manors, Weston, Coconut Creek, Tamarac, Sunrise, Hallandale Beach, Deerfield Beach, Margate, and several others. You can have our lawyers review your case and answer all of your legal questions when you call (954) 716-8538 or fill out an online contact form to schedule a free initial consultation.
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