Ultimate Guide to Hiring DUI Lawyers in Orlando
Check out our ultimate guide to hiring DUI Lawyers in Orlando. We hope this ultimate guide to hiring DUI Lawyers in Orlando will help those seeking info. Check out Smith & Eulo Law Firm’s ultimate guide to hiring DUI Lawyers in Orlando:
Chapter 1: DUI Secret #1
Successfully Challenging The Traffic Stop
The first topic of our ultimate guide to hiring DUI Lawyers in Orlando involves challenging the traffic stop. In many DUI cases, Orlando DUI Lawyers successfully litigate DUI cases by challenging that the initial reason for the officer’s traffic stop was illegal. Both Florida and Federal case law hold that police must have reasonable suspicion that a traffic infraction or criminal offense has been committed in order to pull over a vehicle without a warrant. A police stop of an occupied automobile for a traffic violation constitutes a “seizure” within the Fourth Amendment. Whren v. U.S., 517 U.S. 806, 809–10, 116 S.Ct. 1769, 135 L.Ed.2d 89 (1996). Therefore, for a warrantless seizure to be valid, the government must “point to specific and articulable facts which, taken together with rational inferences from those facts, reasonably warrant” the intrusion. Terry v. Ohio, 392 U.S. 1, 21, 88 S.Ct. 1868, 20 L.Ed.2d 889 (1968) (emphasis added). To justify a warrantless stop an officer must have an articulable, reasonable suspicion that a violation of the law has occurred. Brown v. State, 719 So.2d 1243, 1245 (Fla. 5th DCA 1998).
The main weapon Orlando DUI Lawyers use to attack the initial traffic stop in a DUI case is a Motion to Suppress. At a Motion to Suppress hearing, Orlando DUI Lawyers can argue that the officer(s) lacked the reasonable suspicion required by law to initiate the traffic stop and pull the vehicle over. For example, Orlando DUI Lawyers may argue that the evidence in the case proves the officer(s) did not observe the alleged traffic infraction that caused the stop, and therefore the stop is illegal. If the lawyer is able to successfully challenge the initial stop in a Motion to Suppress and prove the officer had no reasonable suspicion or probable cause for the initial stop, the entire DUI case could be dismissed, no matter how “drunk” or how “guilty” the person accused of a DUI may seem.
Chapter 2: DUI Secret #2
Using The Driving Pattern To Your Advantage At Trial
The second topic of our ultimate guide to hiring DUI Lawyers in Orlando involves challenging the driving pattern.One of the most important components to proving a DUI case is how good or bad the person was driving immediately prior to the traffic stop leading up to the DUI. Orlando DUI Lawyers often use their client’s driving pattern to convince a jury that their client is not guilty of DUI because. Certain actions such as swerving, weaving, accelerating or decelerating for no reason, driving at an unusually slow speed, driving in the wrong lane, wide turns, drifting off the road, slow response to traffic signals, driving without lights, unsafe lane changes, improper turning changing lanes, and/or speeding up and slowing down are all cues of impairment that the State can use to try to prove that the accused is in fact guilty of DUI. Showing the jury that the client did not exhibit some or all of these cues prior to the DUI stop is critical to a strong DUI defense. Good Orlando DUI lawyers know how to strongly emphasize the positive driving actions the client did well, while minimizing the negative cues that the client may have performed poorly. Good DUI Lawyers know that a good driving pattern often means a good DUI defense.
In some DUI cases, driving actions that the State will attempt to use to prove DUI can actually be attributed to completely non-DUI factors. The State commonly uses driving actions such as swerving, weaving, and slow reaction time to argue that a person is driving under the influence. However, these driving characteristics are also attributable to non-DUI factors such as sleepiness, sleep deprivation, or a medical emergency such as diabetic shock or seizure. The police and prosecutor may also try to emphasize that speeding is also a strong indicator of possible DUI. This is not true! Always remember that speeding by itself is not an indicator of DUI, and speeding can be attributed to countless non-DUI factors. Using the driving pattern to your advantage in a DUI case by emphasizing the positive driving attributes, explaining away the negative driving attributes, and strongly arguing possible non-DUI factors are essential to a building a strong DUI defense.
Chapter 3: DUI Secret #3
No Breathalyzer + No Field Sobriety Exercises = No Problem
The third topic of our ultimate guide to hiring DUI Lawyers in Orlando involves cases where there is no breathalyzer and FSE results. Although refusing to perform the Brethalyzer test or Field Sobriety Exercises can ultimately result in a DUI arrest and license suspension, it can actually result in a much better defense for your DUI case. Remember, the State has to prove a DUI case beyond a reasonable doubt. They can only do so in one of two ways: 1) Proving the accused blew over a .08 on the Breathalyzer test; or 2) Proving the accused was under the influence of a substance to the extent that their normal faculties were impaired. If the State does not have a Breathalyzer test result over .08 or a bad performance on the Field Sobriety Exercises to show the jury, the State will have a very hard time proving a DUI beyond a reasonable doubt. Good Orlando DUI Lawyers know how to fight these DUIs.
In situations where there is no Breathalyzer test result over .08 or bad Field Sobriety Exercise performance to show the jury, the State will attempt to prove DUI by showing the jury circumstantial evidence that the accused was impaired to the extent that their “normal faculties were impaired.” “Normal faculties” include the ability to see, hear, walk, talk, judge distances, drive an automobile, make judgments, act in emergencies and, in general, to normally perform the many mental and physical acts of our daily lives. The State will also try to argue that the accused’s refusal to take the Breathalyzer and/or perform the Field Sobriety Exercises shows consciousness of guilt…in other words the accused only refused because he/she knew that they were guilty of DUI and the Breathalyzer/FSEs would confirm that fact. Experienced Orlando DUI Lawyers will successfully argue to the jury that without having FSEs or Breathalyzer results, the State has a complete lack of evidence and cannot prove their DUI case beyond a reasonable doubt. Orlando DUI Lawyers will also rebut the State’s consciousness of guilt argument by make a compelling argument that their client refused because he/she was taking a stand against an unjust DUI arrest and prosecution.
Chapter 4: DUI Secret #4
Picking A Winning Jury for a DUI Case
The fourth topic of our ultimate guide to hiring DUI Lawyers in Orlando involves picking a winning jury. Jury Selection is arguably the most important part of a DUI case. Picking a good, favorable jury in a DUI case can mean the difference between a Guilty or Not Guilty. In order to select good jury members in a DUI case, Orlando DUI Lawyers first focus on excluding the jurors who would almost certainly be biased against a person accused of DUI. Examples of potential jurors you want to exclude from a DUI jury panel include potential jurors whose loved ones have been victims of drunk drivers, potential jurors whose loved ones have suffered from alcoholism, potential jurors who are members of anti-drunk driving groups (i.e. MADD, GLADD), and many others. If jurors with strong anti-DUI biases make a jury in a DUI case, it could spell absolute disaster for the defense at trial.
Identifying these bad jurors during the jury selection process takes targeted, skillful questioning during voir dire. This questioning is designed to get potential problem jurors to talk about their past, and reveal past experiences, feelings, and/or biases that make them bad jurors to serve on a DUI case. Once Orlando DUI Lawyers get potential bad jurors to admit these biases, they can motion the Judge to exclude them from the jury panel. Identifying and removing these jurors is essential to building a strong DUI defense and a winning case at trial. Once the bad potential jurors are weeded out, the focus shifts on trying to select the best jurors for your DUI case from the remaining jury panel. You can identify potential good jurors for your DUI case by strategically asking questions designed to get potential good jurors to express that they are willing to accept your theory of defense and may likely return a verdict of Not Guilty at trial.
Chapter 5: DUI Secret #5
The Video Doesn’t Lie
The fifth topic of our ultimate guide to hiring DUI Lawyers in Orlando involves the importance of videos. In DUI cases, the video recordings captured by police can be your best friend. Police often times video record all or some of the following: 1) the driving pattern prior to a DUI stop; 2) the field sobriety exercises; 3) the 20 minute observation period; and 4) the Breathalyzer test. Although the police record these videos to be used as evidence to help prove a DUI, many times these videos actually turn into great evidence that can be used to beat a DUI case. If the video recordings show a good driving pattern, successful completion of all or most of the field sobriety exercises, improper reading of Implied Consent (i.e. Breathalyzer Instructions) by the Breath Test Officer, or other signs that the accused is not DUI, they can be used as powerful evidence that could result in a Not Guilty in a DUI case.
The absence of a video in a DUI case presents an interesting dynamic. On the one hand, not having a DUI video available means that the officers who observed the accused’s driving pattern, alleged traffic infractions, traffic stop, pre-arrest behavior, and post-arrest behavior can exaggerate the facts or embellish details of a DUI investigation to make it seem that the accused was impaired. In such instances, officers can write the police report in a way that makes it seems like the accused performed poorly on FSEs, was incoherent, stumbling, uncoordinated, erratic, and/or was behaving like an intoxicated person.
Chapter 6: DUI Bonus Tip
Don’t Take Any Chances With Your Florida DUI Case…Hire a Good DUI Lawyer Who Can Fight For You!
Don’t take any chances with your DUI case. Hire experienced Orlando DUI Lawyers. A DUI can have many severe consequences that can have a profoundly negative impact on your life. When you are arrested or charged with a DUI, your license can be suspended in multiple ways. You can lose your driver’s license for 6 months or longer for your criminal DUI charge, and also face additional administrative suspensions from the DMVHS ranging from 6 months to 1 year or longer. DUIs can also result in a jail sentence of 6 months or more. DUIs are definitely not a joke. DUIs are also very expensive, and the costs and fees can add up very quickly. Whether it is the classes, the cost of supervision, the cost of alternative transportation, fines, and more…DUIs can end up costing you thousands or tens of thousands of dollars.
DUI charges also come with a mandatory adjudication, meaning a DUI can result in a conviction on your record that cannot ever be sealed or expunged. Experienced Orlando DUI Lawyers know how to fight to try to prevent your DUI from becoming a conviction and permanent stain on your record. If you can save money and save your record by hiring good Orlando DUI Lawyers, why wouldn’t you make an investment that could save your record and your future. Hiring high quality, experienced Orlando DUI Lawyers may be expensive, but it may be the best investment you ever make. The benefits far outweigh the cost. Choosing the right Orlando DUI Lawyers to fight by your side and handle your DUI case the right way is priceless.
If you have been recently arrested or charged with a DUI, or you have any questions or concerns about a DUI case anywhere in Central Florida, call Smith & Eulo Law Firm at (407) 930-8912. Smith & Eulo Law Firm was voted among the “Top DUI Attorneys in Florida” by the American Institute of DWI/DUI Attorneys and Expertise, and both Darryl Smith and Ken Eulo are rated a perfect 10/10 on Avvo. Our team of talented DUI Lawyers has the knowledge and experience to successfully fight for you and build a winning defense for your Florida DUI case. Call us today at (407) 930-8912 to schedule your FREE CONSULTATION, or visit us at our website at www.smithandeulo.com.
We hope you enjoyed our ultimate guide to hiring DUI Lawyers in Orlando. If you have any questions about our ultimate guide to hiring DUI Lawyers in Orlando or any legal matter, contact us today at (407) 930-8912.