Legal Question in DUI Law in Florida

I got arrested for a DUI in Florida a couple of weeks ago. I got arrested on 2 counts. Count 1 is the DUI and count 2 is driving while suspended or revoked/1st conviction (which is a misdemeanor). Every since I woke up in the holding cell I had a horrible feeling that something wasn't right in regards to the arrest. I have noticed some discrepancies with the police report and the times, as well as memories of other things occurring. The police report states that everything happened between 3:00am to 4:16am. The written/typed notes from the officer never once specify the times of any of the notes that he inputted. Rather, the times are in separate areas throughout the full report where it asks for times, and none of the times add up.

First I had an officer (a Sergeant) stop me for a lane violation (failing to maintain a single lane). The report states that the Sergeant (initial traffic violation stopping officer) "observed the vehicle traveling westbound on ... at which the vehicle (traveling under the speed limit) leave the roadway shoulder. The vehicle then returned to the roadway where it then crossed the center lane divider line occupying both Westbound lanes at the same time. This happened several times before Sergeant ... conducted the traffic stop." The Sergeant came to the car and assumed I was under the influence after making the initial contact. He then called for the DUI/Traffic Enforcement Unit to come to the scene. The DUI officer came to the car and asked a couple questions and then asked me to exit the vehicle. I "admitted that I had drank alcohol earlier in the day" and stated "that I may have had a few too many". At that point the officer lead me to do field sobriety tests. I accepted the request and did the eye test (which the report said I failed of course) then I had to do the line walk. Due to severe blisters that were on the bottom of both of my feet from a lot of walking in old sandles earlier that day ( I have pictures to prove such horrendous blisters and also asked for medical attention when I woke up the next day in the jail cell at which a nurse finally came by and I showed her and she stated that it appears that I need new shoes and that was it). I was unable to properly perform the tests due to the blisters (the report never states this, but rather that I refused to complete the tests) and I stopped and threw my hands in the air and stated "lets just get this over with, just do what you are going to do." The DUI officer asked if I was refusing and I said "yeah" "then (my name) placed his hands behind his back indicating for me to arrest him." The reason I did this is that I knew I was going to be arrested for driving while suspended/revoked (non-habitual) and not for driving under the influence. I then placed (my name) in wrist restraints and informed him that he was being placed under arrest for operating a vehicle while under the influence." Report shows that the arrest happened at 3:12am. At this point the officer began the 20 minute observation period. During this time (with handcuffs BEHIND my back) I was placed in the back of the police vehicle (report never states this). Then after the 20 minute period expired I was led out of the car and the officer switched the handcuff restraints to the front side. I don't remember specifically implied consent being read, but I do remember blowing (and I KNOW NOT TOO). I blew two samples that were over the limit. I was read Miranda and invoked Miranda upon being read my rights. After I invoked Miranda the machine came back with a error for an outside control tolerance. I remember this as my chance to not have the breath test results omitted. The 1st breath tests at the scene of the arrest occurred between 3:33 to 3:39am. After this the written report states that "(my name) was then placed in the rear of my patrol vehicle while I called for rotation wrecker service. Tim's Towing responded to the scene and assumed control the the vehicle and would store it at their facility for safekeeping.

The 2 receipts that I have from the tow company show a time stamp of 3:28:25am, which was almost 10 minutes before I even blew at the arrest scene and not after.

I was then transported to the jail where I could provide "valid" breath samples. After the field Intoxilyzer 8000 came back with an error message at 3:39am, I was escorted to the police vehicle at which we called for a wrecker, the wrecker showed up and then we left for the jail which is about 4 miles away. I already knew I should not have blown a 2nd time and all of a sudden I am in the jail blowing again at 3:53am, which is 14 minutes after the error report came back from the arrest scene breathalyzer results. I believe that for all of that to happen within 14 minutes is factually wrong and almost impossible. What is even more concerning is that I remember everything up until I left the scene with the DUI officer for the jail booking center. I don't remember anything after we left the scene until I woke up in the jail cell. The report shows (breathalyzer print out) that I blew at 3:53 and 3:58am at the station (0.220, 0.204). The the officer states in the report that he then (and never earlier then that) read me my Miranda rights at which time I invoked (4:00am). At the end of the report that officer states that after he completed the report he returned to the patrol vehicle with the agency intoxilyzer inspector and they found that the error was due to a loose dry gas cylinder at which time he fixed and completed a dry gas control test on the instrument. The problem with that is that the Intoxilyzer 8000's printed report shows that the cylinder lot had expired almost a month prior on "03/05/2017" (this arrest happened in the first days of April) It also states on that same page that the last agency inspection was on 03/30/2017, which doesn't make sense.

I have a bad feeling that something really shady happened and was covered up. This sheriff's department has been under high scrutiny from the public and FDLE for major violations of perjury and such illegal actions and their appears to be a culture of corruption and bad practices that are wide spread throughout the department (anonymous officers claiming such on LEO affairs blog sites).

Another discrepancy is on the 2 traffic citations in the form of a ticket that I was given once I posted bail at 1:30pm. Both tickets show that this occurred on the the correct day of the week, month, day, and year, but the time inputted on both tickets for the citation and violation is 5:35am (hours after the "reported" arrest). The police tickets that I received upon posting bail do NOT have my signature on them (both are blank in that section). However, the online informations/records portal through the county clerk of the court that were uploaded days later shows both tickets as exactly the same, with only one difference. Where I was suppose to sign on the tickets there is now a handwritten note that states "In Custody". That was obviously scribed in after I had posted bail since I have a copy of both where the signature line is blank. I believe that there were many mistakes that were made and potentially violations of my constitutional rights, and I look forward to receiving some professional input before I hire on proper council. I know that I need to get a lawyer ASAP, and I will absolutely be acquiring one in the next couple of days, so there is no need to let me know that I need to have a lawyer. ;-) Thanks all!

Asked on 4/20/17, 8:50 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

Craig Epifanio Craig Epifanio, P.A.

Well now that you have sufficiently vented the facts of your case for the world, including prosecutors, to see and even though you don't want to hear it, every lawyer is going to advise you to speak with a lawyer in private. You can either go see one in your area, or you can even post a paid question on here which does remain confidential.

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Answered on 4/27/17, 7:04 pm

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