The Tampa Tribune is reporting that Tampa Fox TV Morning Anchor Russell Rhodes has been charged with one count of Misdemeanor DUI and one count misdemeanor Resisting Without Violence for an incident outside of a Channelside garage.
Unlike other crimes, DUI in Florida is charged based on prior convictions. It is unknown if the charges in this case will be enhanced due to any prior convictions. Florida DUI law allows the State of Florida to charge an individual as a Felony DUI in the following circumstances:
3rd DUI within 10 years
4th or subsequent DUI
DUI with Serious Bodily Injury
Despite the injuries that were clearly evident in Rhodes’ mug shot, the Tampa Police Department also charged the morning anchor with Resisting Without Violence. This misdemeanor charge was based on his alleged running away from officers and refusing to turn the keys to his BMW over to authorities.
The Tampa DUI Prosecutors still have to prove this case in Hillsborough County Court, but unlike Joe Public, Rhodes’ DUI arrest be extensively covered throughout the Tampa Media. If his attorneys decide to take this case to trial, it will be interesting to see if they will ask the court to move his case out of Hillsborough County in order to get his constitutionally-mandated fair trial.