Did you know that a person can be charged with DUI even if they aren’t operating a vehicle? Individuals who ride a bicycle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol are at risk of being charged just as a person would be who is operating their car or truck drunk. While there are various modes of transportation that could have you facing a DUI charge should you decide to commute intoxicated, a recent story featured on 10tv.com isn’t the typical DUI arrest we hear about.
Here’s what happened.
Donna Byrne, 53, decided that she was going to ride her horse down a busy Florida highway. While riding a horse in South Florida isn’t exactly uncommon as there are plenty of areas with individuals owning horses, Byrne appeared to be “confused and possibly in danger.” That is what was reported to police after someone witnessed Byrne and decided to call it in.
When deputies arrived, not only did they find Byrne riding her horse on the road, but they were led to believe she was intoxicated. After officers did a sobriety test where Byrne gave breath samples, her BAC, blood-alcohol content level, came back at .161. Florida’s legal limit is .08, yet her BAC was double the legal limit. Byrne was arrested and charged with DUI as well as animal neglect for endangering and failing to provide proper protection for the horse. After Byrne was booked into the Polk County Jail, the horse was taken to the Polk County Sheriff’s Animal Control livestock facility.
While records did not indicate that Byrne had hired a Florida DUI defense lawyer, she definitely will want to consider doing so as the justice system doesn’t exactly go easy on drunk drivers, even if her mode of transportation was a horse.
Penalties for a first time DUI offender in Miami Dade, Florida
Although this is an odd case, DUI charges aren’t. In fact, they are some of the most common types of arrest cases that occur in the U.S. The Florida Department of Motor Vehicles reported that in 2011, 33,625 individuals were convicted of DUI.
Although each DUI case is going to vary based on the circumstances surrounding the crime, a person who is charged with DUI for the first time is looking at the following penalties:
- A $250-$500 fine.
- 50 hours of community service.
- Not more than one year of probation.
- Not more than six months of imprisonment.
- Not more than nine months of imprisonment if their BAC level was .08 or higher and they were traveling with a minor.
- License revocation for a minimum of 180 days.
- 12 hours of DUI school.
And the penalties only intensify if your BAC level was higher, this is your second offense, or you caused a drunk driving accident.
So, if you were arrested and charged with DUI in Miami Dade, FL, now is the time to contact a local DUI defense lawyer. If you need assistance in doing so, USAtttorneys.com will gladly help you. We work closely with only the best defense attorneys in the field who can work to get your charges reduced.