Live Streaming Not Sufficient Proof of DUI

By October 20, 2015DUI Defense

By: Albert Quirantes, Miami Dui Defense Lawyer

It’s unavoidable, but there are some people out on Florida’s streets who completely ignore the law by driving while under the influence of alcohol (DUI).  Most just end up driving erratically and are stopped by observant police officers while others end up crashing into trees or other objects. Some of course never get caught and make their way home without incident.

Anything could have happened to Lakeland, Florida resident Whitney Marie Beall, aged 23, who recently live streamed her drunkard behavior on video. It apparently began in a local bar and continued when she got behind the wheel of her vehicle.  She was using Periscope, which is Twitters live streaming app. This can be viewed by thousands of people at any one time.  Now why would someone do that?  I would never recommend it as an attorney.

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As soon as people started viewing it, they urged the young woman to get off the road. One viewer suggested that Ms Beall would get there faster if she got out of her vehicle and walked. Amongst the warnings were a large number of 911 calls which started when concerned Periscope users were watching Beall’s antics in real time. This prompted Lakeland PD to start a search for the drunk driver.

Police representative Sgt. Gary Gross reported to the local NBC station affiliate WPTV that in 30 years of being involved in law enforcement he hadn’t come across any incident quite so bizarre.

Fortunately, no one was injured before the young woman was arrested. It has not been revealed if she undertook any tests such as sobriety tests before being arrested. These, along with determining the blood alcohol level or BAC of a driver are ways officers determine whether a driver is under the influence before actually charging a driver.

Although not very smart, live streaming a drunken act is still not sufficient proof to bring about a charge and subsequent conviction. Even in an unusual situation like this, a Miami DUI attorney like Albert Quirantes should be consulted by the defendant as soon as possible after being arrested. Penalties for exceeding the BAC level in Florida are harsh, with even a first offence attracting a fine of between $250 and $500 plus court costs of $600 – $700 on top of that, 50 hours of community service, up to 12 months of probation, a prison term of up to 6 months, license suspension of no less than 180 days but up to 1 year and a 12 hour period in DUI school plus counseling. The penalties rise the higher the BAC.

A Miami DUI lawyer such as Albert Quirantes will study the facts and ensure the accused is treated fairly at a court appearance. Prosecutors will seek a prosecution so that they can keep drunk drivers of Florida’s roads, but sometimes they go too far by pushing for sentences that are far harsher than the crime that has been committed. The results of sobriety tests are often invalidated when examined by a DUI attorney because of the conditions under which they took place or too much subjectivity involved. Even blood alcohol tests may prove to be suspect because of deficiencies discovered in the testing procedure. Defendants who try to defend themselves or plead guilty hoping for a lighter sentence without the help of a Florida Dui lawyer may find that they end up with harsher penalties than they expected.

A Florida DUI attorney puts in the extra mile to ensure the accused not only knows his or her rights, but is treated fairly too.

If you have any questions about this or any other criminal accusation, call Miami Criminal Defense Lawyer Albert Quirantes at: 305-644-1800 or visit our homepage for a direct link to the office, a text message or a map and directions.

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