DUI in FL with TX Driver's license, Santa Rosa County

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Latest post Thu, Oct 20 2016 11:14 AM by GaryFischer. 15 replies.
  • Sun, Sep 13 2015 12:19 PM

    • GaryFischer
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    DUI in FL with TX Driver's license, Santa Rosa County

    I was arrested for DUI in Santa Rosa County, FL with a TX driver's license.

    I refused the breath test and requested a blood test. They would not do the blood test. I took the field sobriety test and failed. I was not aware you could refuse the field test and there is no law requiring you to do so. I had one previous DWI when I was 18 in TX and I am 51 now. I also was cited for 81 in a 35 and an open container. 

    Can they suspend my TX license for refusing to take the breath test in FL? If so, which law would apply? In TX it is 180 days and in FL 1 year. Also, I refused the breath test because in FL I have mainly heard lawyers say not to take it and that the breathalyzer used in FL is not very accurate. I assumed I may have a better defense without the test and can apply for a hardship license. I have a prescription for Xanax and had taken my prescribed amount that day. I had 4-1/2 glasses of wine, and about half of a 24 ounce 4 Loko over about 6 hour period. I agree that especially mixed with the Xanax I should not have been behind the wheel but calcuating what I had to drink, my weight and time consumed, an approximate BAC would have been about .053 ... Maybe I should have taken the test but didn't.

    I really don't have the money to spend the kind of money I am seeing for a good DUI lawyer. I may be able to borrow it but, I think the best they coud do for me is get the DUI charge dropped to wreckless driving. It wouldn't change the fines and fees that much. Should I try a public defender? 

    Any suggestions would be helpful

    Thank you

  • Sun, Sep 13 2015 1:25 PM In reply to

    Re: DUI in FL with TX Driver's license, Santa Rosa County

    GaryFischer:
    Can they suspend my TX license for refusing to take the breath test in FL? If so, which law would apply?

    Yes.  Both states are members of the Driver's License Compact and TX will honor the FL suspension(s) as if they occurred in TX.  The FL one year will apply since that is where the offense occurred.  

    GaryFischer:
    I assumed I may have a better defense without the test and can apply for a hardship license.

    You assume too much.  The breathalyzer makes it easier to prove you were impaired but it is not the only way they can prove it.  The refusal can make it worse.

    GaryFischer:
    I should not have been behind the wheel but calcuating what I had to drink, my weight and time consumed, an approximate BAC would have been about .053 .

    Speculating on what your BAC might have been is pointless now.  

    GaryFischer:
    Should I try a public defender?

    You can certainly see if you qualify for one but if jail time isn't likely then the state may not provide one.

    "That's just my opinion, then again I might be wrong."  Dennis Miller

     

  • Sun, Sep 13 2015 1:56 PM In reply to

    • GaryFischer
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    Re: DUI in FL with TX Driver's license, Santa Rosa County

    Thank you for the reply. 

    Most of the DUI attorney's websites so far that I have read say to refuse the breath test do to inconsistent results with the the antiquated breathalyzers used in FL and that there is sufficient evidence to show inaccuracies of the results. However, as you mentioned about estimating my BAC it is too late to change that. To argue the case based on the reason for refusal being the inaccuracies of the equipment used will require an experienced DUI attorney, which I may just have to find the money to be able to afford. 

    My question on the public defender really is more would that be a bad idea. If I financially am unabe to pay for representation. That fact woud have to be established by the court. 

    "Criteria for a Court-Appointed Attorney

    The justices in Gideon unanimously held that "in our adversary system of criminal justice, any person haled into court, who is too poor to hire a lawyer, cannot be assured a fair trial unless counsel is provided for him." However, the Court later clarified this ruling, making it apply to cases where the defendant is charged with either a felony or a misdemeanor which could result in imprisonment from a conviction."

    As I read that, the requirement other than finacial is not whether it is likely but has the possibility of inprisonment. Which DUI on even a first offense has that possibility. 

     

  • Sun, Sep 13 2015 2:19 PM In reply to

    • GaryFischer
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    Re: DUI in FL with TX Driver's license, Santa Rosa County

    Interesting note I found on the DLC website, if you commit a traffic violation -- including a DUI -- in a member state, then your home state's vehicle code will apply to your out-of-state offense. Now I am even more confused

  • Sun, Sep 13 2015 3:05 PM In reply to

    Re: DUI in FL with TX Driver's license, Santa Rosa County

    When TX is notified, they will honor the suspension.  Some states don't report DUI's but FL does. 

  • Sun, Sep 13 2015 6:36 PM In reply to

    Re: DUI in FL with TX Driver's license, Santa Rosa County

    GaryFischer:

    Interesting note I found on the DLC website, if you commit a traffic violation -- including a DUI -- in a member state, then your home state's vehicle code will apply to your out-of-state offense. Now I am even more confused

    Correct. Florida will report the convictions to the DLC database and Texas will then apply it's laws to determine what suspension or revocation applies. See Texas Transportation Code section 523.005. For a refusal to consent to a BAC test Texas suspends your license for 180 days on a first conviction. 

  • Sun, Sep 13 2015 6:37 PM In reply to

    • GaryFischer
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    Re: DUI in FL with TX Driver's license, Santa Rosa County

    Yes, I am sure they will. What seems confusing to me is that according to the Driver's License Compact website is that among participating states the crime is charged according to the home state's vehicle codes which include the penalties. In some parts penalties in FL are tougher and some parts TX is tougher but the mandatory suspension period for refusing to a breath test is 180 days in TX and 1 year in FL. I guess I will find out.

  • Sun, Sep 13 2015 6:42 PM In reply to

    • GaryFischer
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    Re: DUI in FL with TX Driver's license, Santa Rosa County

    Yes, that is how it sounds to me. I hope that is what happens. Technically refusing to take a breath test is breaking the implied consent law that both states have correct? So, even if I were somehow able to get the charge down to wreckless driving which I kind of doubt with failure of a feild sobriety test, video, excessive speed, open container...but, even if I could do that, it seems I still would lose my license for at least 180 days. Correct?

  • Sun, Sep 13 2015 6:52 PM In reply to

    Re: DUI in FL with TX Driver's license, Santa Rosa County

    If you refused consent, you violated Florida law. If Florida determines you violated its implied consent law then under the DLC Texas is obligated to suspend your license the same way it would if you had violated the Texas implied consent law. But it is not directly a violation of the Texas implied law. The Texas implied consent law only applies in Texas. So, you will only face suspension in Texas on the implied consent issue only if Florida determines you violated its implied consent law.

  • Sun, Sep 13 2015 7:02 PM In reply to

    • GaryFischer
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    Re: DUI in FL with TX Driver's license, Santa Rosa County

    Thank you. What sounds strange to me is those laws say if you refuse to take a breath, blood or urine test I think and I declined the breath test but said I would consent to another test but was refused. I think they will just say I violated implied consent though

  • Sun, Sep 13 2015 7:42 PM In reply to

    • GaryFischer
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    Re: DUI in FL with TX Driver's license, Santa Rosa County

    Maybe I should post this in another thread but for my ticket for 81 in a 35 in FL, that is a criminal charge, I can't take driver's education for that and I have to appear in criminal court. As far as I am aware there is no corresponding law in TX and according to TX law I believe all speeding tickets are misdemeanors. According to the DLC does that mean there is no corresponding charge that would become part of my TX driving record or that they would simply consider it a lesser offense?

  • Sun, Sep 13 2015 8:31 PM In reply to

    Re: DUI in FL with TX Driver's license, Santa Rosa County

    GaryFischer:

    Thank you. What sounds strange to me is those laws say if you refuse to take a breath, blood or urine test I think and I declined the breath test but said I would consent to another test but was refused.

    Some states do not give you a choice of which test to do. In those states if you refuse the test the officer wishes to do then you have violated the implied consent law. It appears that Florida is one of those states. However, Florida law does allow the driver, at his/her own expense, request to have some other test done in addition to the test that the officer asks you to do. So, if the officer wants you to do a breath test and you don't trust those results and want a blood test, you still have to do the breath test that the officer wishes to do but you may request that a blood test be done, too.

    The best thing to do is not drink before driving, of course. But if you are pulled over and asked to do a test for BAC level, you need to know the implied consent rules for the state in which you are driving, including what counts as a refusal to test and what the consequences are for a refusal. 

  • Sun, Sep 13 2015 8:34 PM In reply to

    Re: DUI in FL with TX Driver's license, Santa Rosa County

    GaryFischer:
    Maybe I should post this in another thread but for my ticket for 81 in a 35 in FL, that is a criminal charge, I can't take driver's education for that and I have to appear in criminal court. As far as I am aware there is no corresponding law in TX and according to TX law I believe all speeding tickets are misdemeanors. According to the DLC does that mean there is no corresponding charge that would become part of my TX driving record or that they would simply consider it a lesser offense?

    Texas should treat that like it would if you were convicted of doing 81 in a 35 mph zone in Texas. That kind of speed may amount to something like reckless driving. It is certainly potentially very dangerous, you were lucky you didn't get into an accident. 

  • Sun, Sep 13 2015 8:43 PM In reply to

    • GaryFischer
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    Re: DUI in FL with TX Driver's license, Santa Rosa County

    Yes, I was. For anyone who knows the area somewhat, it is right where highway 110 over the Pensacola Bridge slows down and becomes more of a city street. I don't know the area well, and was turned around and thought I was on a different bridge on highway 10 which the speed limit is 70. By the time I realized I was where it turns into more of a city street, I already had lights behind me. That is not going to help that case any though because the speed imit is what it is not what I thought it was and the prosecutor will just say I didn't realize because I was intoxicated

  • Sun, Sep 13 2015 10:10 PM In reply to

    Re: DUI in FL with TX Driver's license, Santa Rosa County

    Florida will impose punishment for the DUI.  TX will honor the conviction and impose a corresponding license suspension and points on your license.  Only FL can throw you in jail, fine you and whatever else that state wishes to impose as punishment.

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