Can my prior convictions be used against me in a Florida drunk driving case?
Prior convictions in Florida are not used as evidence against you at trial; however, they can be used against you if you’re convicted for DUI once again. The judge will consider your previous conviction(s) during sentencing. If you have prior DUI convictions, then the statute requires more severe punishment upon your latest conviction. The more DUI convictions you have in Florida, the worse the punishment that is required by law.
If I have a prior DUI, will the punishment be more severe?
In Florida, the fact that you have a prior DUI on your record will most certainly elevate the punishment you get depending on how much time passed between your previous DUI and the most recent charge. If your prior conviction was within 5 years, then the law requires that you serve a jail sentence of a minimum of 10 days. Additionally, you will face a driver’s license revocation of a minimum of five years.
What should I do if I have been charged with a third or fourth DUI?
Any person convicted of a third DUI within ten years of a prior conviction or a fourth or subsequent DUI is guilty of a third-degree felony offense for which he or she may face severe consequences. A fourth DUI is always a felony offense in Florida, whether the previous conviction was last week or last decade. If you face charges for a third or fourth DUI in Florida, you could face a long period of incarceration. Speak with a determined DUI defense attorney as soon as possible after your arrest about your case. Attorney Brian Gabriel offers free consultations in West Palm Beach.
What are the penalties for a third or fourth DUI in Florida?
Any person convicted of a third or fourth DUI in Florida faces a felony charge. A third DUI offense within ten years of a prior conviction is a third-degree felony punishable by a fine of up to $5,000 and/or 5 years in a Florida state prison. Additionally, he or she may face up to five years of probation, community service, and license revocation for a minimum of ten years. A third DUI after 10 or more years of the second conviction is a misdemeanor offense punishable by up to 12 months in jail and a fine of $1,000 to $2,500. The individual may also need to install an ignition interlock device for two years after he or she becomes eligible for a driver’s license.
A fourth DUI whether or not it occurred within 10 years of a previous DUI conviction is a third-degree felony offense.