Driving Under the Influence
Tampa D.U.I. Attorney
If you or someone you know has been arrested for Driving Under the influence, you are not alone. It’s estimated that 53,000 people were arrested for DUI in 2009. A DUI is much more than just a traffic ticket. It is a very serious criminal offense that can have lifelong consequences. The penalties associated with the crime of DUI have seen a steady increase over the past 20 years as society has recognized the dangers of impaired drivers. However, contrary to popular belief, it is not illegal to drink and drive; it is illegal to drive while impaired. Consequently, many people charged with DUI are simply not guilty.
If you are arrested and charged with a DUI, and it is your first offense, you will be facing a mandatory minimum sentence. This means that if you plead guilty or no contest, the judge has no choice but to sentence you to these guidelines as established by law. Further, the court is not allowed to withhold adjudication on a DUI conviction. This means you will not be eligible to have your record sealed or expunged; it will stay with you for life.
Minimum Mandatory Penalties for a first time DUI:
- 1 year of Probation
- 6 months of probation (Roughly $60 per month in costs)
- Attendance at DUI school ($231)
- 50 hours of community service
- Impoundment of your vehicle for 10 days
- $500 fine plus court costs (This ends up costing over a thousand dollars)
- 6 months drivers license suspension
Tampa criminal attorney William B. Wynne will take the time to look for all the options available to accomplish full dismissal of your case if possible. He will appear in court on your behalf, allowing you to continue to work and support you and your family. In order to be convicted at trial of the crime of “Driving Under the Influence,” the prosecutor has to first be able to prove that the criminal offense took place beyond a reasonable doubt. A properly prepared defense can often result in reduced penalties, reduced charges, or a dismissal. Even in cases where the evidence of guilt is overwhelming, a good defense attorney can present mitigating circumstances which can often decrease the penalties.