Was arrested for DUI over the summer. My final court date was 2 weeks ago where I was put into ARD program with 30 day license suspension, several alcahol awarness classes and a 12 month probation. This week I was issued a Citation for Public Drunkenness. Im in my late 20's, a college educated home owner, been working full time at a good job in a hospital while taking more college classes on and off for the past 5 years. Regarding my 12 month probation, I dont belive it has started, I only met the P/O after court, where the only comunication was him taking my info and telling me we will not meet agian untill June. Could someone please give me a best and worst case scenario if found guilty? Will I be removed from ARD? Is this a probation offense? any upside to pleeding guilty?
DUI / DWI Attorney
You could be removed from the program for the citation. Public Drunkenness usually is punished by a fine, but probation is an option. In addition, the statute technically permits punishment by incarceration. There is never an upside to pleading guilty without first contacting a qualified defense attorney for assistance.
f you utilized an attorney to represent you in the process, you should contact that attorney for assistance. If you proceeded pro se, you should seek the assistance of a qualified criminal defense attorney in your area.
Every county handles ARD probation differently. In most, there is a requirement that you report your arrest/citation to the probation department within a limited period of time. Therefore, it is important that you act quickly.
Criminal Defense Attorney
Worst Case Scenario, you are removed from the ARD program and prosecuted on the DUI which if convicted you will lose your license for one year and be incarcerated for 48 to 72 hours if your BAC was .10 or above. On the public drunkenness you will probably only get a fine.
Best Case is they ignore it and nothing happens. In a Philly ARD it is unlikely that you will ever see a PO again, but there are probably certain reporting requirements. Failure to report and falsification in reporting can obviously create other unpleasant consequences if discovered.
There is no upside to pleading guilty on the Public Drunkenness. Hire an attorney who can assist you and hopefully the case may even be able to be discharged. The downside is certainly worth hiring counsel to help protect you. Best of Luck.
This response does not create an attorney / client relationship and should not be relied upon to make decisions in any case. It does not substitute for hiring your own attorney and consulting with him or her to provide in depth legal advice.
Child Custody Lawyer
I agree with Mr. Morgan. Many counties require that you report a new charge within 72 hours. The failure to report alone could get you removed from ARD in some counties.
Whether the probation department acts on the charge is another question and can be largely county specific. It may also depend on the charge for which you were placed on ARD. If it is a similar offense, and both involve alcohol here, then it is more likely that they will act on the offense.
I would strongly suggest that you speak to an attorney before doing anything with the citation for public drunkenness and what possible ramifications it can have for your ARD placement. Most counties will not take any action until there has been a disposition on the public drunkenness charge. An experienced criminal defense attorney may be able to come to some resolution or other disposition where you do not have a conviction for the public drunkenness and which may save your ARD placement. Considering the possible ramifications (loss of license and jail time) if you are removed from the ARD program, it is well worth the money to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney in your area.