I was just arrested for my 2nd DUI but they're saying it's my 3rd..

I was arrested last Friday night for DUI. I refused to blow when the arresting officer asked me if I wanted to. All said and done, the Paralegal from the Public Defender's office comes into the jail and asks me what happened. I tell her, and she says "Do you know what you blew?" I told her, "I didn't blow. I refused when the officer asked me if I wanted to blow." She tells me "I have your paperwork right here and it says you blew a .233" I told her that that wasn't even possible because I don't ever remember blowing. It sounds like the numbers I blew in 2008 because I was obliterated then. I don't know how they got this 3rd DUI conviction since it's technically only my 2nd. I don't know what to do..I'm scared the Public Defender's office is going to get me screwed..

Sebring, FL -

Attorney Answers (3)

Amir A. Ladan

Amir A. Ladan

DUI / DWI Attorney - Orlando, FL
Answered

I encourage you to hire private counsel to handle your DUI. By refusing a breath test, you have lost your license for at least 12 months if this was your first time refusing a breath test and for 18 months if you have a prior refusal. Presuming your license was valid at the time of your arrest, you can drive for ten days utilizing your DUI citation as your temporary permit. You only have 10 days from the date of your arrest to request a formal review hearing, which means that if you were arrested Friday, February 8th that you only have until the 18th to request the hearing. The PD's office does not handle DMV hearings, which means that you won't have a lawyer representing you at a Formal Review Hearing to challenge the suspension of your driver's license for refusing to take a breath test. I urge you to request the hearing and to hire a lawyer as you are facing some enhanced penalties for having a prior DUI. For more information, take a look at my free ebook that you can download from my site - www.CarstenandLadan.com. If you'd like more information, I am available for a free consultation by phone or in person.

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Jonathan Hackworth

Jonathan Hackworth

Criminal Defense Attorney - Tampa, FL
Answered

I agree with my colleague. A private attorney will assist you in ensuring that the accurate reading from the breathalyzer is applied. My firm handles such matters and offers free case consultations. Our office line is 813 830 2261.

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Jasen Bodie Nielsen

Jasen Bodie Nielsen

DUI / DWI Attorney - Santa Barbara, CA
Answered

I agree with the other attorneys - you're definitely going to want and need to hire private counsel. Use avvo to find a couple local to you and give them a call - most will offer a free consultation. Good luck.

Jasen Nielsen

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