Florida DUI with Serious Bodily Injury
A DUI with serious bodily injury is a charge imposed on intoxicated drivers who have caused an accident that resulted in the injury of another person. This charge is more serious than a standard or first-offense DUI, and a conviction could result in extremely strict penalties.
DUI with Serious Bodily Injury Penalties
Unlike many other DUI offenses that are considered misdemeanors, a DUI with serious bodily injury is a third-degree felony. If you are convicted of this elevated charge, you can face up to five years in prison, followed by probation and community service. You will also be responsible for up to $5,000 in fines, plus court costs and will be required to attend a DUI education course and submit to a psychological evaluation. In addition, your license will be suspended and once it is reinstated, you will be required to have an ignition interlock device installed on your vehicle at your expense.
Keep in mind that having a felony conviction on your record is permanent and may make it difficult for you to find or keep employment or earn a degree. You may encounter difficulties in securing housing and will lose your right to vote.
Defending a DUI with Serious Bodily Injury
Just because you have been charged with a DUI with serious bodily injury does not mean that you will necessarily be convicted of this third-degree felony offense. In order to prove your guilt, the State must prove that you were legally intoxicated and that you were solely responsible for the accident that resulted in the injury. Securing the services of an experienced DUI defense attorney is the best way to fight your charge.
Your attorney will analyze all of the facts of your case and utilize all of the tools at his disposal to shed doubt on the prosecution’s claims. He will first look for evidence of improper police procedure during the stop and arrest to see if the evidence of your impairment is valid. Your attorney may also work with an accident reconstruction specialist who will determine who was at fault for the accident. If the specialist’s findings indicate that you were not at fault for the accident, the serious bodily injury portion of the charges against you may be dropped.