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Do I have a case to drop my dui charges even if I plead guilty and refused the breathalizer?

Jacksonville, FL |

I was at a friends house and was moving my truck. My flip flop got stuck on the axcelerator and I lost control of the truck and crashed into a neighbors concrete block driveway. I told the cop I had 3 beers but was not drunk. She did a field sobriety test and then booked me. I refused the breathalizer test but plead guilty only because I wanted to get out of jail. Since I plead guilty, do I even have a case? This is my first DUI.

Attorney Answers 4

  1. If you have already pled guilty it may be difficult to fight anything at this point. You would need to have an attorney withdraw your plea of guilty in order to challenge the DUI and any legal aspects of the charge. In order to withdraw your guilty plea there will have to be certain legal criteria that will need to be met. You will definitely need the assistance of an attorney to do this and to discuss with you if it is worth it in the long run.

  2. You need to at least set up an appointment with a private attorney. Did you plead guilty at first appearance? What was the punishment? If you have already plead guilty, you may be able to get the plea withdrawn. See an attorney immediately.

    R. Jason de Groot, Esq., 386-337-8239

  3. I agree that you need to consult an attorney if you wish to discuss your plea being withdrawn, many offer free consultations and can go over everything with you and help you determine whether you can withdraw your plea and whether that is the best decision.

    The information provided is not intended as legal advice and does not establish an attorney client relationship. If you are in the greater Sacramento area and wish a further consultation please contact me at (916)594-9442.

  4. I assume that you pled guilty or no contest at arraignment and was not represented by counsel. If that is the case, you may have grounds to set aside your plea. Under those circumstance, the Court must conduct what is called a Faretta Inquiry. Under the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Faretta v California, 422 U.S. 806 (1975), the Judge is required to explain (1) the nature of the charges against you; (2) the possible penalties; and (3) the disadvantages and dangers of self-representation. It must inquire into your age, experience with the court system and make a finding that you are mentally competent to represent yourself. The procedure the court must follow in Florida is set out in Fla. R. Crim. P. 3.111 (d). In connection with the court's inquiry, it must determine of record that the defendant has made a knowing and intelligent waiver of the right to counsel and that he/she does not suffer from severe mental illness to the point where he/she is not competent to to conduct trial proceedings by himself./herself. At a minimum, it must advise you of the "dangers and disadvantages of self representation". See Vega v. State of Florida, No. 5D09-2598 (Fla 5th DCA, 2011). There are time limitations to asetting aside the plea so I'd contact local counsel and set an appointment immediately to determine whether this potential option is available to you.

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