Traffic fatalities bring about unfortunate and tragic consequences for everyone involved. Pursuant to Florida law, a DUI manslaughter charge comes about when a driver causes another person’s death while operating a motor vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
The possible penalties associated with a DUI manslaughter conviction are serious. If you have been charged with DUI manslaughter, you need experienced, competent legal representation by an experienced St. Petersburg, Florida criminal defense attorney.
Felony Offense and Possible Penalties
DUI manslaughter is a felony offense in the State of Florida and is punishable by a minimum mandatory prison sentence of four (4) years. This sentence can be extended to up to fifteen (15) years of incarceration. A sentencing judge could also impose significant fines under the Florida State Criminal Statute.
In addition to possible fines and jail time imposed under the statute, a DUI manslaughter conviction could also carry with it significant administrative penalties through the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, including the loss of your driver’s license.
Potential Defenses to a DUI Manslaughter Charge
An experienced St. Petersburg criminal defense attorney may be able to raise certain legal defenses on your behalf, in order to potentially obtain a dismissal of your case or reduce the charges and potential penalties. The most common defenses to a DUI manslaughter charge include the following:
- Lack of actual physical control over the vehicle involved in the fatal collision
- Questionable BAC level
- Questionable field sobriety testing
- Questionable interpretation of test results
- Missing, inadequate, or improper Miranda warnings
- Failure by police officer to warn the accused of potential penalties for declining to take Breathalyzer test
- Improper or inaccurate administration of Breathalyzer test
- Malfunctioning Breathalyzer test equipment
Contact an Experienced St. Petersburg Criminal Defense Lawyer Today to Discuss Your Case
If you have been charged with DUI manslaughter, it is absolutely essential that you have an experienced St. Petersburg criminal defense lawyer on your side representing you throughout your case. An experienced criminal defense attorney can assist you with formulating the necessary legal defense(s) and can help you to obtain a favorable result in your case.