Fort Myers DUI Pedestrian Manslaughter Defense Lawyers
Fatal Drunk Driving Hit and Run Attorneys in Fort Myers, Florida, FL
In the State of Florida, when a driver is caught operating a vehicle with a blood alcohol content level of 0.08% or higher will be charged with Driving Under the Influence (DUI). DUI law enforcement officers are trained to detect drivers who are intoxicated by narcotics. In addition, drivers who are under the influence of drugs may also be charged with Driving Under the Influence. A DUI criminal charge is a serious criminal offense in the state of Florida, but when a drunk driver injures or kills another person, the fines, punishments, prison sentecing, and other penalties are severe.
Under Florida Statute Section 316.193(3)(c)(3), the criminal offence of DUI manslaughter is defined as an individual who was operating a motor vehicle and unintentionally murder another while the driver is under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Florida Statute Section 782.071 states that homicide victims of DUI manslaughter can be a child, a viable fetus, or an adult. DUI manslaughter offenses are typically charged as felonies and categorized as a Level 8 crime in Florida.
Fort Myers Police and prosecutors are under a lot of pressure to win convictions in pedestrian manslaughter DUI cases. Often times drunk drivers flee from the fatal accident to avoid criminal prosecution. Each and every weekend, there are multiple news reports reporting fatal hit and run pedestrian accidents. However, fatal hit and run crashes are caused by motorcycles, cars, trucks, mopeds, motor scooters, buses, ATVs, SUVs, and any other vehicle. What makes these hit-and-run crashes so fatal is the speed of the vehicle. Most fatal pedestrian crashes are caused by drunk drivers occur during late night and morning hours from ranging from around 11 PM to 5 AM on Saturday and Sunday mornings. When law enforcement officers investigate the fatal accident scene, they typicallt arrest and charge the offender after reviewing surveillance camera footage, examining crash debris which may identify the make, model, and year of the motor vehicle, and after interviewing eyewitnesses.
Drivers Charged with a Fatal DUI Pedestrian Accident in Fort Myers Need Aggressive Legal Counsel
At Musca Law, our drunk driving vehicular homicide defense lawyers in Fort Myers, Florida, work fast to protect our clients' legal rights and protect their freedoms. It's important for those arrest with a manslaughter criminal offense in Florida, start preparing their legal defense early. Early intervention by a DUI manslaughter defense attorney in Fort Myers, Florida, will help a defendant weaken the prosecutor's case against them and help fight the prosecutor’s evidence.
In Florida, when a driver of a vehicle has caused an auto accident with a cyclist, walker, pedestrian, or any other vehicle leading to death, homicide law enforcement investigators will begin a DUI manslaughter investigation. As part of the investigation, the officers will put in a will petition or formal request with the judge to obtain a warrant to draw blood from the alleged drunk driver and test the blood for drugd and alcohol. These blood samples would then be tested for the presence of alcohol and all types of narcotics. Moreover, DUI investigators will request a copy of the suspect's medical records and blood test results are the medical aspect of a DUI pedestrian manslaughter case in Fort Myers, Florida, that makes defending a drunk driver in a manslaughter case so complex. When scientific evidence is entered into a criminal case, the prosecutor's case will become more and more compelling to the jury. However, defendants should understand that they are innocent until that have been found guilty in a court of law and not to give up on fighting their DUI manslaughter charges as aggressively as possible.
If you, or a family member have been arrested and charged with DUI pedestrian manslaughter in Fort Myers, Florida, call our law firm by calling Musca Law today at (239) 932-3551 or visit us at our Fort Myers law office located at 2200 Dr Martin Luther King Jr Blvd Suite A, Fort Myers, FL 33901. Our phones are answered 24/7.
Subpoenas for HIPAA and Medical Records Privacy Rights in Fort Myers Fatal DUI Pedestrian Manslaughter Cases
A subpoena, is also referred to as "duces tectum," will be requested by Florida’s prosecuting attorneys and will request the medical records of the driver who allegedly struck and killed a walker, cyclist, pedestrian, motorcyclist, or occupant in a motor vehicle. Fort Myers prosecutors may also mail the defendant a "HIPAA 15-day letter," also known as a "Notice of Investigating Subpoena for Medical Records.” It is important that you understand the implications and your legal rights concerning medical records. In Florida, medical records are protected by federal HIPAA laws. For prosecutors to acquire the medical records, the offender’s right to privacy must be handle in the proper manor. Fortunately, Florida courts do take the due process rights of its citizens seriously.
Our Fort Myers drunk driving homicide defense lawyers at Musca Law are readyt to help you protect your legal rights, understand what needs to be done to defend yourself in accordance with Florida law. Musca Law fights hard to preserve your due process rights. Our criminal defense law firm represents those accused of all kinds of traffic, DUI, and criminal cases, including those involving death, serious personal injury and property damage.
Punishments in Drunk Driving Homicide Cases in Fort Myers, Florida
In Florida, DUI manslaughter charges are a second-degree felony, and the crime sentenced with a maximum prison sentence of 15 years. The DUI homicide criminal offense is categorized as a Level 8 crime, according to Florida Criminal Punishment Code. DUI Manslaughter convictions generally carry a maximum prison sentence of 15 years, and a mandatory-minimum prison sentence of four years.
In addition to a prison sentence, there are several additional potential punishments such as:
- • Community service
- • Fines of up to $10,000
- • Mandatory prison sentences
- • Lengthy probation
- • Mandatory counseling for alcohol or drug abuse
- • Permanent loss of driver’s license
- • Impounding of the suspect’s vehicle
Three Key Elements Prosecutors Are Required to Prove to Obtain a Conviction in a Fort Myers DUI Vehicular Pedestrian Homicide Case
According to Florida criminal code, Floirda prosecutors are required to prove three key elements of the crime to obtain a conviction in DUI manslaughter cases in Fort Myers, Floirda. Also, fopolice officers to take a blood sample from the suspect, officers must believe the following three elements happened to arrest the suspect and for the prosecution to win a conviction.
- • The accused was driving a motor vehicle or in control of a motor vehicle;
- • The defendant was under the influence of alcohol or drugs; and
- • The motor vehicle in which the defendant was driving struck and killed another person.
- Florida law requires that law enforcement officers act responsibly and meet all of the mandatory requirements to obtain a blood sample from the accused.
Building a Strong Defense in a DUI Pedestrian Manslaughter Case in Fort Myers, Florida FL
Our Fort Myers Pedestrian Manslaughter Defense Attorneys Musca Law know how to build a powerful and persuasive defense. State prosecuting lawyers will have the benefit of having detectives conducting a thorough investigation. Defense experts are often used to uncover evidence that may later be used to weaken the prosecutor's case.
Every Musca Law client knows that our legal professionals will always be there fighting for them and assisting them through every step of the criminal trial process. Our Fort Myers vehicular homicide defense attorneys should be with you during police interrogations, help seek out witnesses, collect important evidence, acquire witness statements, and take photographs to help our clientele have the best chance of beating their criminal charges. Moreover, our Fort Myers Fatal DUI Pedestrian Accident Defense Lawyers review each client case with a critical eye, and our legal professionals aggressively file "motions to suppress" to have as much as the prosecution's evidence against our clients thrown out.
Hit and Run DUI Criminal Charges in Fort Myers, Florida
When a driver has consumed narcotic medications, alcohol, or illicit drugs and they strike and murder a pedestrian, their first impulse is to run from the accident scene. About 30% of all pedestrian accidents are hit and run pedestrian accidents. In many fatal hit and run criminal cases, had the intoxicated driver stopped and rendered aid to the pedestrian by calling 911, the pedestrian could have survived the accident. Then no manslaughter or homicide charges would have been necessary. Almost all pedestrian accidents involving drivers who are intoxicated happen late at night or early in the morning hours along unlit highway or dark city streets. Failure to stop and provide aid to the injured pedestrian after an accident is a serious crime in Florida. All drivers, by law, must to stop and render aid and provide their contact and insurance information to the other people involved in the collision.
According to Floirda law, a driver has committed a third-degree felony,punishable by up to five years in prison when the driver leaves the scene of a pedestrian crash and they caused injures to another person. The judge could impose a fine of up to $5,000. If the pedestrian suffered severe bodily injury, the hit-and-run drunk drive could face a second-degree felony punishable with a five-year prison sentence and a fine of no more than $10,000. If an intoxicated driver strikes and kills a pedestrian and then runs from the accident scene, the driver will be charged with second-degree felony DUI manslaughter and fleeing the scene of an accident with injury or death. If the driver is convicted of these criminal offenses, he or she could receive a $10,000 fine and a prison sentence of up to 30 years.
Building an Powerful Defense For a Fort Myers DUI Pedestrian Manslaughter Case
If you, or a friend, or a loved one have been charged with DUI manslaughter for killing a pedestrian, cyclist, or another driver, there are effective legal defenses available to help defend the criminal charges. Determining which of the best defenses to apply in a particular case requires the review of the circumstances surrounding your case by an experienced DUI pedestrian manslaughter attorney in Fort Myers, Florida.
Disputing the Prosecutor’s Evidence Against the Defendant
In order for prosecutors to win a conviction against a driver charged with DUI pedestrian manslaughter in Fort Myers, the prosecuting attorneys must ba able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant was in control of the vehicle, he or she was under the influence of alcohol or drugs or and the accident caused the death of the alleged victim. The circumstances of the case might lead your defense attorney to argue that you are not driving at the time of the fatal crash or that you were not driving under the influence. Another excellent defense strategy is to refute that the injuries sustained in the fatal accident actually caused the pedestrian's death. In many hit and run pedestrian crashes, defense attorneys have been able to successfully explain that the pedestrian either caused the accident or was partially at blame for the crash. For example, a pedestrian was attempting to cross a street and walked out in front of the driver's oncoming vehicle. This is an incident that happens frequently when pedestrians are walking along roadways while intoxicated.
A "lack of witness defense” is a legal defenese to deny that the accused was operating the vehicle at the time of the accident. If there were no witnesses who saw who was actually driving the vehicle at the time of the crash, and the driver did not admit to driving the vehicle involved in the collision, there's a potential for the case to be dismissed or your defense attorney to win an acquittal.
It's important to understand that those accused of a crime or those who are being questioned by law enforcement do not speak with police or answer most of their questions without having a criminal defense attorney present. It is advisable to be poliate and tell the officers you name, address, and other identifying information and no more. In any significant number of criminal cases, the defendant has been convicted of a crime because of statements they made to law enforcement officers. There are many people in prison right now who are innocent, but decided to speak to police and they were tricked into making certain damaging remarks.
Improper Collection of Accident Scene Evidence
In Florida, police officers are required to follow certain rules and use specific procedures while investigating a fatal accident and while collecting accident evidence to be used against the suspect. If those procedures have been violated, an experienced Fort Myers defense attorney should file a motion to suppress to exclude evidence collected due to improper handling or collection of evidence. An example of a procedural mistake that could benefit the defense is the collection of a blood sample from the accused without obtaining a search warrant or the consent of the accused. If your defense lawyer is able to prove this has traspired, the blood evidence plus relevant chemical analysis could be deemed inadmissible and will be prevented from being used as evidence in that defendant's DUI Vehicular Homicide trial.
Chemical and breathalyzer tests are complicated pieces of equipment that require calibration and proper maintenance. If there electronic devices are not properly calibrated and/or maintained, the chemical tests will provide invalid results. If your criminal defense lawyers is able to prove improper calibration or maintenance of a breathalyzer or other lab equipment has occurred in your case, those evidentiary results could and should be thrown out.
A breath test could also produce false results following an accident due to the chemicals used in certain types of airbags. Once airbags are deployed during an accident, the breathalyzer test results could be proven to be inaccurate by your DUI vehicular homicide defense attorney.
Miranda Rights Violations as a Defense in Fort Myers DUI Pedestrian Manslaughter Cases
In certain circumstances, statements made by the defendant may not be used against him or her in a court of law. When lpolice place a suspect under arrest, the arresting officer is required, by law, to read the suspect their Miranda rights. The Miranda Warnings inform the accused of their constitutional rights, such as their right to have an attorney present with them during questioning by law enforcement and their right to remain silent to avoid self-incrimination.
In a DUI arrest, the law enforcement officer must read the driver the “Implied Consent Warning.” Those drivers who hold a commercial driver's license must be read the standard “Implied Consent Warning,” and a special implied consent warning for commercial truck drivers. If these have not been read to the accused, this may provide an opportunity for your DUI Manslaughter defense attorney to petition the court for dismissal.
For your free case review, call Musca Law today at (727) 480-9675 or visit us at our Fort Myers law office located at 2200 Dr Martin Luther King Jr Blvd Suite A
Fort Myers, FL 33901. Our phone lines are open 24/7.
Fort Myers Location
2200 Dr Martin Luther King Jr Blvd Suite A
Fort Myers, FL 33901
Phone: (727) 480-9675