Tampa DUI Attorney Jason Melton has represented many defendants whose arrests wind up in the newspaper and suffer through the gossip that follows. But this past week, the Tampa, Florida publisher of the St. Petersburg Times and a sports editor were both arrested for DUI in Hillsborough County, FL. The Times was honorable enough to write about the arrest of their own employees.
According to the reports, the sports editor arrested for DUI was stopped on Bruce B. Downs and allegedly consented to providing a breath sample. The editor allegedly provided a sample of 0.19. The law presumes a driver is impaired at or above 0.08. The Florida Legislature recently amended Florida Statute 316.193, this is the Criminal Statute number for DUI in Florida, to include an enhancement of all DUI mandatory sanctions in convictions which result from arrests where the breath sample is in excess of 0.15. The law in Florida for years provided an enhancement where the breath sample was in excess of 0.20.
The Tampa, Florida publisher arrested for DUI was stopped allegedly for traveling 20 miles per hour over the speed limit. The arrest was concluded with a refusal of the breath test. In refusal cases, the State is obligated to present an argument to the jury that the defendant was impaired due to alcohol, drugs or the combination of the two. Commonly, the State will use its Field Sobriety Exercises as its most important piece of evidence in an impairment case. Because the results of these tests are so important, the method in which an officer conducts these tests or exercises is also important. The different parts of the normal FSE routine are taught in Police Academies throughout the country based on standards created by NHTSA. These exams are very much a central part of most defense cases when facing an impairment theory as opposed to a case based on a breath test, blood or urine results.