Monday, September 12, 2011

DUI Cases Under Scrutiny in Florida

St. Petersburg Criminal Attorney and Former State Prosecutor Melinda Morris of the Morris Law Firm discusses a recent DUI case that may serve to put other DUI cases into question.

Issue:

A recent Hernando County Florida case sheds light onto the potential issues with DUI cases that may benefit DUI defendants.

In this case, under questioning by the defense attorney, a Hernando County breath test operator testified that a security breach may have violated Florida Administrative Code regarding the fact that evidentiary breath test instruments must only be accessible to those licensed by the state.  The Administrative Rule is in place to protect the chain of evidence in DUI cases.

The breath test operator testified that on numerous occasions Hernando County Sheriff’s deputies had entered the office and tampered with the breath test instruments and opened and viewed breath test evidence.  The issue was apparently so egregious that the breath test operator decided to resign because she could no longer sign the breath test affidavits in good faith.




Why This Matters To You:

Based on the above case, there is a possibility that many previous DUI cases in Hernando County could be called into question.  It is also possible that until the issues related to the security of the breath test machine are resolved that Hernando County judges may not allow breath test results to be admitted as evidence.

On a larger scale, this situation serves to underscore the importance of properly investigating and reviewing DUI evidence.  An experienced DUI Defense Attorney should appropriately review and aggressively call into question the State’s evidence against a DUI defendant including any chain of evidence issues identified.

By identifying weaknesses and procedural issues in the State’s case, there is a greater opportunity that a DUI case may be resolved successfully for the defendant.


What To Do Next:

If you have been arrested for DUI or other drug related crimes contact a St. Petersburg DUI Attorney to discuss possible defenses and specific strategies that may exist in your case.  Call the Morris Law Firm at 727-388-4736 to discuss your case directly with an attorney, or fill out our Online Form to be contacted for a Free Initial Consultation.  The Morris Law Firm can help and has specific knowledge and experience in defending DUI offenders throughout Pinellas County and the entire Tampa Bay, FL Area (St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Tampa, Hillsborough, Pasco, Bradenton, Manatee, and Sarasota).