DUI with Serious Bodily Injury
Drunk driving accidents are an all too common occurrence in the United States. In Florida, almost half of all alcohol related accidents result in an injury. The state is very conscious of the dangers of driving under the influence (DUI) and has implemented stiff penalties for DUI infractions.
If a DUI infraction causes a serious injury, the penalties for anyone convicted become even more harsh. To be clear, a DUI that causes serious bodily injury is a felony offense. If you are charged with a DUI that caused serious bodily injury it is in your best interest to retain an experienced DUI attorney.
Lawyer for DUI with Serious Bodily Injury in Broward County, FL
Were you arrested, or do you think that you might be under investigation for an alleged DUI resulting in serious bodily injury in South Florida? Remain silent with authorities until you have retained an experienced DUI attorney. Contact Meltzer & Bell to learn more about DUI with serious bodily injury.
Lawrence Meltzer and Steven Bell are experienced criminal defense lawyers in Fort Lauderdale who aggressively defend clients accused of DUI offenses in communities all over Broward County including Hollywood, Pompano Beach, Davie, Fort Lauderdale, Coral Springs, Miramar, Pembroke Pines, Plantation, and many surrounding areas.
Call (954) 765-6585 today to have our attorneys provide a complete evaluation of your case during a free initial consultation.
Overview of DUI with Serious Bodily Injury in Broward County
- Elements of a DUI with Serious Bodily Injury Charge in Florida
- Broward County Penalties for DUI with Serious Bodily Injury
- Florida DUI with Serious Bodily Injury Resources
Elements of a DUI with Serious Bodily Injury Charge in Florida
A person convicted of a DUI with serious bodily injury faces a third-degree felony. A felony charge is a serious offense and a prosecutor is going to have to prove certain things to convict an alleged offender. The prosecutor will need to show that:
- The driver of the vehicle was under the influence of alcohol, a chemical substance, or a controlled substance to the point that his or her normal faculties were impaired. Alternatively, the prosecutor can show that the driver’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was 0.08 or higher;
- The driver was operating the motor vehicle; and
- By reason of that operation, caused or contributed to causing serious bodily injury to another person.
What separates a normal injury from serious bodily injury then? If a victim suffers some minor scrapes and bruises, that should not be enough to face a DUI with serious bodily injury charge. In Florida, serious bodily injury means that any person, including the driver, suffers a physical injury that creates a substantial risk of death, serious personal disfigurement, or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ.
Broward County Penalties for DUI with Serious Bodily Injury
A third degree felony comes with a big fine and possibly years in jail. A third degree felony is also what an offender is facing if they are charged with DUI with serious bodily injury. If convicted, an offender could face the following:
- 5 years – The maximum prison sentence
- $5,000 – The maximum fine
- 3 years – The minimum amount of time the offender’s driver’s license will be revoked
If the offender has been convicted of DUIs in the past, the sentencing will be enhanced even further. While a court may order an ignition interlock device installed as punishment for a DUI conviction, a second conviction will force the court to order such a device installed on all of the vehicles owned, leased, and regularly operated by the offender for one year. An ignition interlock device is a device that a driver must blow into to see if the person has consumed alcohol. If alcohol is detected the device will prevent the vehicle from starting. Installation of the ignition interlock device will be solely at the expense of the offender.
Florida DUI with Serious Bodily Injury Resources
Sobering Facts: Drunk Driving in Florida | Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) — The Center for Disease control tracks data for all kinds of health issues across the country including motor vehicle accidents. Following this link will take you to a fact sheet that shows a sample of relevant data regarding DUI related injuries. The fact sheet also provides strategies to reduce injuries in drunk driving crashes.
Florida Department of Transportation Annual Report (2016) — The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) tracks highway and motor vehicle accident data for the whole state. Following the link will take you to the state’s latest annual report on highway safety which includes DUI accidents and serious injuries. Interestingly, the report says that the state intended to reduce the number of serious accidents year over year starting in 2012 but the report found that the number of fatal accidents actually increased over that time span.
DUI with Serious Bodily Injury Attorney in Broward County, FL
If you were arrested in South Florida for an alleged DUI offense that resulted in serious bodily injury to another person, it is in your best interest to exercise your right to remain silent until you have legal representation. Meltzer & Bell represents individuals in all over Broward County including, Fort Lauderdale, Hollywood, Coral Springs, Davie, Miramar, and many other surrounding areas.
Broward County criminal defense attorneys Lawrence Meltzer and Steven Bell will work tirelessly to help you achieve the most favorable outcome that results in the fewest possible consequences.
You can have our lawyers review your case and discuss all of your legal options as soon as you call (954) 765-6585 or submit an online form to take advantage of a free, confidential consultation.