My brother was charged with DUI first offense, on Friday night. He took the sobriety field test, and he passed it but the officer still arrested him because "he reeked of alcohol" and the officer could "smell it all over his breath". He did not take a breathalyzier. Can he get this dropped since, he passed the sobriety test.
Unfortunately, the State Attorney's Office does not just drop DUIs. Your brother needs to consider retaining a criminal defense attorney immediately since there are hard set deadlines with DHSMV concerning keeping his license. It also sounds like he has some strong defenses to the charge. My firm offers free case consultations in these matters, I, personally, can be reached on my cell phone at 813-830-2261.
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It is unlikely to be dropped. However, with a good counsel, he may be able to defeat the charges. An individual can be found guilty based upon police observations and their testimony about the suspects behavior. Passing the field tests is good and it sounds like a winnable case.
Family Law Attorney
As he did not take the intoxilyzer test and as such his license is suspended for 12 mos. He will need to request a formal review hgr. with the DHSMV. to contest the suspension. It is at this hearing that a lot of discovery can be had as to the officer's take on the DUI.
The State will not necessarily drop the case because you think he passed the "field sobriety tests." A good prosecutor will be able successfully try the case without the intoxilyzer results. Other factors come into play for a successful prosecution, i.e. odor of alcohol, bloodshot eyes, slurred speech, and coordination agility all come into play.
I agree with the answers from my colleagues. It is important that your brother contact a local criminal defense attorney immediately. He needs to request a hearing with the DHSMV within 10 days of his arrest or his driver's license will be suspended.
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Contact a local criminal defense lawyer for a free consultation ASAP.
Criminal Defense Attorney
I agree with others here that prosecutors don't just drop DUI charges; they only do it if the case is weak or if the Judge grants motions that are dispositive of the case, however for that your brother needs an attorney since DUI is a highly specialized filed. The fact that your brother "passed" the sobriety test and did not take a breathalyzer could be grounds for a Motion to Suppress, but he should be aware that doing it right the first time is crucial as a first denial on technical grounds could preclude successive motions. My advise, hire a DUI attorney fast.
Your brother needs an attorney! He only has ten (10) days from the date of arrest to request a hearing with the DHSMV because he refused to take the breathalyzer. Without seeing your brother's arrest report, it likely reads, "defendant had an odor of alcoholic beverage on his breath, his eyes were glassy and blood shot, and his face was flushed. He fumbled with his wallet and appeared nervous." It appears that 99% of Florida DUI's have the same wording. All of those indices could be explained. Did you brother have allergies or a cold? Was he at a place where someone spilled a beer on him? What time was it? Was he late coming home from work? Does he have diabetes or other conditions? And, of course he was nervous, most people are nervous when a police cruiser with multiple flashing lights and sirens pulls you over and an officer is shining a light in your face. These an other issues can be explored by a competent attorney in your area.