DUI Property Damage

When an allegedly drunk driver causes a car accident, the absence of death or injuries to other people does not mean that he or she will not face enhanced penalties. If a person causes damage to the property of another party while allegedly driving under the influence (DUI), that individual can face aggravated charges that possibly involve a longer jail sentence and bigger fine.

In addition to criminal penalties, alleged offenders in these cases can also be legally responsible for repairing or replacing the property they damaged. People who have been charged with DUI causing property damage need to understand that there may be several defenses relating to the alleged intoxication or whether the individual was even driving that can lead to these charges being reduced or dismissed.

Lawyer for DUI Property Damage Arrests in Brooksville, FL

Were you arrested or do you think that you might be under investigation for an alleged DUI offense causing property damage? You should not say anything to authorities without legal representation. Contact The Law Office of Ashley Aulls, P.A. as soon as possible.

Ashley Aulls is an experienced criminal defense attorney in Brooksville who represents clients all over Sumter County, Citrus County, Hernando County, and Pasco County. He can provide a complete evaluation of you case when you call (352) 593-4115 to set up your first consultation.

Overview of DUI Property Damage in Florida

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DUI Property Damage Charges in Hernando County

Under Florida Standard Jury Instruction 28.1(a), a prosecutor must prove all three of the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt in order to convict an alleged offender of DUI causing property damage:

  • The alleged offender drove or was in actual physical control of a vehicle;
  • While driving or in actual physical control of the vehicle, the alleged offender was under the influence of alcoholic beverages, a chemical substance, or a controlled substance to the extent that his or her normal faculties were impaired or he or she had a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 or more; and
  • As a result of operating the vehicle, the alleged offender caused or contributed to causing damage to the property of the alleged victim.

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DUI Property Damage Penalties in Brooksville

Under Florida Statute § 316.193(3)(c)1., DUI causing property damage is classified as a first-degree misdemeanor. If an alleged offender is convicted of this offense, he or she may be sentenced to up to 12 months in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000.

Penalties in these cases can be enhanced if an alleged offender had a BAC of 0.15 or higher, or was accompanied in the vehicle by a person under 18 years of age at the time of the offense. In such cases, alleged offenders can face minimum fines of $1,000 up to $2,000.

It is important to note that Florida’s accident report privilege established under Florida Statute § 316.066(4) prevents any statements made to police officers by the people involved in the crash for the purpose of completing a crash report cannot be used as evidence in any trial, civil or criminal.

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Florida Resources for DUI Property Damage Crimes

Criminal Courts | Hernando County, Florida — Florida’s Fifth Judicial Circuit is comprised of Hernando County, Marion County, Lake County, Sumter County, and Citrus County, but circuit courts generally handle felony cases while misdemeanor offenses (such as DUI causing property damage) are handled in the county courts. On this website, you can learn more about the Hernando County Court. You can download various forms and find information about how to pay court costs and fines or obtain cash bond refunds.

Hernando County Courthouse
20 N. Main St.
Brooksville FL 34601
(352) 754-4201

Hertzschuch v. State, 687 So. 2d 52 (Fla. 3d DCA 1997) — On January 29, 1997, the Third Court of Appeal affirmed the circuit court’s dismissal of the appelant’s petition for writ of prohibition in this case in which the appellant contended that it would be double jeopardy for the county court to try him on four counts of DUI with property damage (to four separate vehicles) during one continuous driving episode. The Court of Appeal noted that while this appeal was pending, the Florida Supreme Court reviewed Melbourne v. State, 655 So.2d 126 (Fla. 5th DCA 1995), a case in which an alleged offender who caused the death of two persons and injury of a third in a single driving episode and was convicted of multiple DUI counts also contended that the multiple convictions arising from one continuous driving episode violate double jeopardy. The Florida Supreme Court approved the result, holding that a DUI driver may receive multiple convictions arising from injury to each of multiple victims, leading the Court of Appeal to write, “Although Hertzschuch is here charged with separate DUI property damage counts, we see no distinction that would lead us to conclude other than the Florida Supreme Court has done in relation to DUI injury to persons.”

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The Law Office of Ashley Aulls, P.A. | Brooksville DUI Property Damage Lawyer

If you believe that you could be under investigation or you were arrested for an alleged DUI offense causing property damage in Central Florida, it is in your best interest to immediately retain legal counsel. The Law Office of Ashley Aulls, P.A. defends clients all over the greater Hernando County area, including Inverness, Wildwood, New Port Richey, Spring Hill, Brooksville, Weeki Wachee, and several other nearby communities.

Brooksville criminal defense attorney Ashley Aulls can fight to help you achieve the most favorable outcome resulting in the fewest possible consequences. Call (352) 593-4115 or fill out an online contact form to have our lawyer review your case and answer your legal questions during a confidential consultation. 

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