The Master Law
If you are facing charges for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you have every reason to feel especially stressed out this holiday season. Although every DUI case is different and there is no way to predict how yours will turn out, you can take at least some comfort in the fact that you are not alone.
According to Statistic Brain, police arrest an average of 1,500,000 people for drunk driving annually. The precise number may vary from year to year—and from state to state—but it has remained fairly consistent over time. Fortunately, there has been a downward trend in the number of drunk driving fatalities in recent years.
Although it is natural to assume that the rising popularity of ride sharing programs like Uber has led to fewer impaired motorists on the roads,...more
If you have not made any plans for ringing in 2018, now is the time to start thinking about whom you want to spend it with and what you want to be doing when the clock strikes midnight. The New Year will be here before you know it, and along with it the fresh start that most people aim to take advantage of by making resolutions.
Unfortunately, those who fail to arrange for transportation after their evening out may end up spending January 1 in jail, which is essentially the furthest you can get from starting off the year on the right foot. According to the New York Times, New Year’s Day is one of the most dangerous days of the year in regard to drunk driving collisions.
As a result, law enforcement personnel all over the country are on high alert. Although they are only trying to keep the roads safe for everyone, overzealous officers can end up arresting motorists who are not actually considered legally...more
Even though Florida has no-fault car insurance laws, there are still minimum coverage requirements that motorists must meet in order to purchase and maintain a vehicle in our state. These requirements include at least $10,000 of coverage in personal injury protection (PIP) and at least $10,000 of coverage in property damage liability (PDL).
Although these limits are fairly low, especially compared to the coverage requirements in states that operate under a tort system, the premiums can be expensive for certain motorists. A variety of factors can affect car insurance rates, including:
- Driving record;
- Vehicle make and model;
- Deductible; and
- Claims history.
At the end of the day, insurance providers want to determine just how likely a particular motorist is to file a claim. Since individuals with a history of accident claims, traffic tickets, or reckless driving charges are more likely to get into a...more
According to the SunSentinel, the 26-year-old man who caused a fatal drunk driving collision on I-95 near Broward County in 2015 received his sentencing earlier this month. The man was facing six charges when he appeared before a judge, but four of them were dismissed due to their repetitive nature.
The defendant pled no contest to two charges of DUI manslaughter. The judge sentenced him to 29 years with credit for time that he had already served.
According to the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, the man was not even supposed to be driving when the incident occurred because he was a habitual traffic offender. His license had been revoked for five years in 2015, so he was not supposed to get behind the wheel again until 2020.
In two separate chemical tests, the man’s blood alcohol concentration measured 0.169 and 0.170, which is more than twice the legal limit in the state of Florida....more
In the state of Florida, sobriety checkpoints are legal. That means police can pull over motorists without probable cause if the drivers pass through an established checkpoint, so long as certain policies and procedures are followed in establishing the checkpoint..
Even if you have not been drinking and driving, sobriety checkpoints can be nerve racking and stressful. Much of the evidence that police use to justify arresting someone for DUI is subjective, which means even sober motorists can find themselves on the wrong side of the law after passing through a DUI roadblock.
According to USA TODAY, some Floridians have tried to protect themselves at sobriety checkpoints by keeping their windows rolled up and displaying essential documents, like their driver’s license, insurance card, and vehicle registration, through the glass. By not interacting with officers, these motorists are avoiding accusations of inebriation...more
Florida courts take domestic violence seriously, but that does not mean you will automatically face felony charges if a family member has accused you of a crime involving domestic violence. A variety of factors ultimately determines whether domestic violence accusations will result in misdemeanor or felony charges.
These factors include the circumstances surrounding the incident, whether a weapon was used, the severity of any injuries that the alleged victim sustained, your criminal record, and prior history of domestic violence. The penalties for a conviction will also depend on a variety of factors, including the age of the victim, severity of the injuries, and whether a weapon was involved to name a few.
If you are facing criminal charges following an altercation with a family member, contact DiRenzo Defense. Unlike other law firms that practice multiple areas of law, we are solely dedicated to criminal defense. Call 954-653-2172 to schedule a free case evaluation with a criminal attorney in Broward County.
Labor Day is one of the busiest travel holidays of the year. Many people choose to celebrate the long weekend with a few drinks, but if your plans involve alcohol, bear in mind that police will be out in full force to identify and arrest drunk drivers.
You should expect to see more DUI checkpoints over the holiday period. According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, DUI checkpoints are legal in the state of Florida, and officers conduct between 15 and 20 of them every month.
Although police must have probable cause to conduct a traffic stop, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that sobriety checkpoints are an exception to search and seizure provisions because the dangers of drunk driving outweigh the degree of intrusion of such checkpoints. That means police can pull you over at a sobriety checkpoint just to conduct a random welfare check.
However, it is important to remember that police still have to follow strict written protocols during a...more
Shoplifting convictions carry severe penalties in the state of Florida. Possible sentences include fines and jail time, but that is not all you have to worry about if you are facing charges. In addition to taking on the prosecutor in a criminal case, you may also face a civil case because the merchant has the right to sue you for damages.
If you are facing shoplifting charges, the potential penalties depend on a variety of factors, including any prior convictions on your record and the value of the items that you allegedly stole. For example, pursuant to Florida Statutes, shoplifting is a third-degree felony if the stolen property is worth over $300.
If police have accused you of shoplifting, it is important to remember that you have options, and a conviction is not necessarily the only possible outcome. A shoplifting lawyer can help you explore these options while defending your rights every step...more
What Are the Penalties for Leaving the Scene of an Accident in Florida? Insights from a Criminal Lawyer in Fort Lauderdale
If police catch you leaving the scene of an accident for any reason in the state of Florida, you could face criminal charges. The circumstances surrounding the collision and the amount of damage it caused will determine if you face misdemeanor or felony charges.
Pursuant to Florida law, you must not leave the scene of an accident under any circumstances. Although it is okay to pull over to the side of the road or drive a short distance so you can wait for first responders, you need to remain fairly close to the scene in order to fulfill your statutory duties regarding the collision. If you or one of your passengers needs emergency medical care, you can rely on an ambulance to reach you faster than you would reach the nearest hospital, so there is no need to leave the scene in such a scenario.
Possible penalties for a hit and run conviction include prison, fines and court costs, probation, and license revocation. If the collision resulted in bodily injury or fatalities and you are facing felony charges as a result, a conviction could have lasting repercussions on all...more
News-Press reports on a recent DUI case in Florida involving a scooter and an offender with multiple convictions. According to authorities, the man crashed his scooter into a median before it landed on top of him.
Police determined the man’s blood alcohol content was more than three times the legal limit of 0.08. Because of the defendant’s four prior DUI convictions, which occurred in Broward County, the judge ordered the maximum possible penalties for his charges.
The man received a jail sentence of 364 days, as well as 12 months of probation. The defendant’s driver license has also been suspended permanently, and he may not possess or consume any alcohol. In addition to undergoing random screenings, the man must complete a residential substance abuse treatment program, cover all court costs, pay a $4,000 fine, and attend DUI school.
If police have accused you of driving while intoxicated, it is...more
In order to conduct a traffic stop and assess a motorist’s sobriety, police must have probable cause to pull over the driver in the first place—most of the time. If police are conducting a sobriety checkpoint, though, they can essentially pull over motorists at random in order to identify drunk drivers.
According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, police conduct sobriety checkpoints in 38 states, and Florida is one of them. Police will conduct between 15 and 20 DUI checkpoints monthly across the state in an attempt to find inebriated motorists without having to wait for probable cause.
If you are facing DUI charges after going through a sobriety checkpoint and you want to discuss your rights, turn to DiRenzo Defense. Our legal team has defended thousands of clients during our 40 years of combined experience practicing law. Call 954-889-7502 to schedule a free consultation with a DUI attorney in Broward County.
If you get a DUI conviction in the state of Florida, the resulting penalties could have a resounding impact on all aspects of your life. Potential penalties include fines, community service, probation, imprisonment, vehicle impoundment, and license suspension.
Any one of these penalties could affect your ability to provide for your family, so fighting DUI charges is always worth the effort. Even if the prosecutor seems to have substantial evidence against you, your attorney may still be able to devise a defense strategy that results in reduced penalties, lesser charges, or an outright dismissal of your case.
If you are facing DUI charges and you are not sure how to proceed, turn to DiRenzo Defense. Our attorneys have defended thousands of clients who faced criminal charges, and we will relentlessly fight for the best possible outcome for your case. Call 954-889-7502 to schedule a free consultation with a DUI attorney in Fort Lauderdale.
Read on to learn about four...more
Pursuant to the Sixth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, if you are facing criminal charges, you have a right to legal counsel. In most cases, an attorney can be appointed for you if you cannot afford one. It is important to remember, though, that public attorneys are often overworked, and the lawyer appointed to your case might not have extensive experience handling cases like yours.
Rather than taking your chances on a public defender, it is wiser to do your research and find an established criminal lawyer. A reputable attorney can investigate your arrest, gather evidence, and structure a comprehensive defense based on the unique facts of your case. With the right approach, it may be possible to convince the court to reduce your charges or penalties, or to dismiss your case altogether.
If you would like to discuss your charges with a criminal defense attorney in Fort Lauderdale, turn to...more
If apprehended charges under Florida’s 10-20-Life Statutes can be expected according to Direnzo Defense
www.local10.com is reporting that a Dunkin Donuts was robbed last week. The crime was captured on video and depicts an employee and customer being held at gunpoint according to Broward County Sheriff’s Office Deputies. The assailants were wearing masks to conceal their identity.
Video evidence becomes less useful to the prosecution where identifying features are not apparent by captured surveillance video. We have seen cases whereby the State Attorney attempted to establish identity by introducing video evidence depicting an individual walking in a manner similar to the defendant.
Theft crimes in Florida involving the use of a handgun are much more severe due to special criminal statutes that enhance the offense. 10-20-Life laws also come into play.
It is not necessary that a firearm be found for the prosecution to seek a conviction under Florida law. The mere allegation that a firearm was used is enough for the State to proceed.
Criminal Prosecution and Defense Question & Answer
Q- If a defendant is alleged to have used a...more
Criminal Defense Lawyers in Broward County vary in skill and experience when it comes to specific Florida criminal offenses.
If you have been arrested in Broward County, consulting with a lawyer is certainly advisable, however, finding the best fit for you and your defense is not always as easy as it sounds. Inquiring as to the length of time a criminal lawyer has been practicing in Broward is a good start. Additional information such as number of cases handled and number of jury trials and motions filed should also be obtained.
Specific information about a criminal lawyers experience handling similar offenses to the crime for which you have been charged should also be determined. Information about a prospective lawyers history, skill and accomplishments should always be obtained in writing.
We have found that the best way to get information about a prospective criminal lawyers skill and experience is by making the request via email.
Should you have questions about how to determine a criminal lawyer’s qualifications, contact Criminal Lawyer William...more
If you have been arrested for Shoplifting in Broward County, you may be eligible for a diversion program.
Diversion is generally reserved for first time shoplifting offenders in Broward County. This is a statutory remedy under Florida law that can result in your case being dismissed by the prosecuting attorney.
Shoplifting lawyers generally do not advise diversion to offenders who have a valid defense to the charge and should be viewed as a potential option for those who do not wish to fight the charges or have little or no defense available. The determination as to the strength of any criminal charge should always be left to your criminal defense attorney.
Many options outside of diversion may be available to you and this should not be your only answer to dealing with an arrest for shoplifting. Speaking with a shoplifting lawyer in Broward County is always advisable for deciding on how best to proceed with your case.
Always be certian to ascertain whether potential lawyers you you are interviewing have experience in defending shoplifting arrests in...more
A motion to recuse the judge assigned and having jurisdiction over a criminal matter must sufficiently alleged facts tending to establish that said judge is predisposed toward the state and against the defense
A motion to recuse the judge assigned and having jurisdiction over a criminal matter must sufficiently alleged facts tending to establish that said judge is predisposed toward the state and against the defense. Many lawyers have a problem with the filing of motions to recuse due to the fact that they require local criminal defense lawyers to state publicly and on the record that the presider is incapable of being fair and impartial.
Keep in mind that many of our local criminal defense attorney’s in Broward routinely socialize with the sitting criminal judiciary. Lawyers shy away from filing these motions and they shouldn’t claims.
The fact is that when issues arise in criminal cases that may create an appearance of impropriety or unfairness, judges are quick to pass the case on to one of the other sitting judges.
However, these motions should never be filled without an adequate basis. Frivolous motions to recuse will have a lasting effect on your relationship with any particular Judge. Motions to recuse that have merit, however, are generally well received by...more
Special investigators learn to recognize subtle cues that may be indicative of abuse by immediate family members and within the home
Special investigators learn to recognize subtle cues that may be indicative of abuse by immediate family members and within the home. Sex Crime Detectives in Broward County maintain close working relationships with centers for the prevention of domestic violence and sexual abuse.
While not as prevalent as it was only a decade ago, victim advocacy representatives actively keep contact with alleged victims of abuse.
Victims of sexual abuse are not like the victims of more common crime for obvious reasons. Failure to protect the victim despite their fragile state can result in a failed prosecution for the State and a failed emotional recovery for the victim.
We are talking about a victim who is severely distraught in most cases and is also unfortunately carrying a majority of the evidence needed in prosecuting the assailant. Micro fibers, bodily fluid samples, DNA and blood must all be correctly collected from a procedural and investigatory standpoint claims.more
A recanting victim is always beneficial from a defense standpoint, however, the fact that an alleged victim later changes his story will not result in a dropping of the charges in Florida. This is because detectives investigating sex crimes are trained to scrutinize conflicting statements where minor children are involved.
Broward Criminal Lawyers routinely come across investigators hold to beliefs that a child victim was originally telling the truth about a crime. Later changes in testimony regarding their recollection of the facts are often seen as false and considered to be fabricated by the victim rather than as exculpatory evidence.
A recent study found that up to 25% of child victims of sexual abuse in Florida changed their recollection of the facts giving rise to an arrest in some significant shape or form. This creates significant problems for the prosecutor, obviously, however will not guarantee that the criminal action be closed. Attorney Weick attributes this to a belief by detectives that outside influences such as family pressure not to tell are being...more
Battery and assault are two distinct crimes, even though they are often discussed under one group. Assault is mainly a threat that results in the victim fearing imminent harm, and there is no physical contact. On the other hand, when there is actual contact resulting in bodily harm, it is considered battery. In a battery case, the prosecution has to prove the perpetrator willfully, physically touched or struck the victim against his or her will. Florida law distinguishes different types of battery by considering the level of bodily harm caused, the use of a weapon and other aspects of the case. –Fort Lauderdale Criminal Lawyer William Direnzo
In simple battery, the perpetrator intentionally makes physical contact with the victim, against his or her wish. There is no serious bodily harm done, and it could be just an unwanted touch or a push. Simple battery is a first-degree misdemeanor offence punishable with a fine up to $1,000 and/or up to one year in jail. –Florida Criminal Statutes
In felony battery, the...more
Failing to appear in court after you have received a summons, ticket or other court-ordered request could lead to the issuance of a bench warrant for your arrest
Failing to appear in court after you have received a summons, ticket or other court-ordered request could lead to the issuance of a bench warrant for your arrest. Similarly, if you have been charged with a misdemeanor, felony, or you have violated the terms of your parole, a judge may issue a bench warrant authorizing your arrest. Now, while you should be informed anytime a bench warrant has been issued for your arrest, this will not always be the case. You may not become aware of a bench warrant until it is too late and you have been placed under arrest.
If you are under investigation for a criminal offense, or you suspect a bench warrant has been issued for your arrest, we strongly advise you consult with a DiRenzo & Weick criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. When you contact our firm, we will take the time to answer any questions you may have, determine whether or not you have a bench warrant, review the original charges against you and work diligently to help you get the entire matter fully resolved. From the dismissal of your warrant, to the avoidance of...more
Florida law enforcement officials take sex crimes extremely seriously. In fact, anyone convicted of a sex crime in Fort Lauderdale, or anywhere else in the state of Florida, can expect to face harsh penalties and the life-long stigma that follows a convicted sexual offender or predator. There is a difference, however, between a sexual offender and a sexual predator. A sexual offender is an individual who has been convicted of a sex offense and who has been released after October 1, 1997 from the sanctions imposed as a result of their conviction. These types of offenses can include sexual battery, child pornography, kidnapping, the procurement of a minor under the age of 18 for prostitution, sexual performance by a child, and more. A sexual predator is an individual who has been convicted of one first- or two second-degree felony sex crimes on or after October 1, 1993. The court must also issue a written order in order for an individual to be officially labeled and registered as a sexual predator.
While status as a sexual predator cannot be removed unless you receive a full...more
When a 911 call is made regarding Domestic Violence incident, it is a serious situation. Most likely, someone is going to jail. After you are arrested, what do you do? Most likely the victim is your husband/wife, boyfriend/girlfriend, or loved one. You want to talk to them but you can’t. Most often, on top of a bond, the Judge will order you to have no contact with the victim. In many cases, the victim does not want to prosecute. At William Moore Criminal Defense, we have been faced with this situation many times. If the victim wants to have contact, we can get you in front of the Judge and ask to have the no contact order removed. Under no circumstance should you contact the victim when a no contact order is in place as you risk being arrested and put back in jail. Also, if they desire not to prosecute, we can direct them to the proper person to call and discuss the situation. Call us, we can help.more
Can a juvenile that has been direct filed to adult Court and receive a life sentence? The US Supreme Court recently addressed the issue in Miller v. Alabama. In Miller, a 14 year old was convicted of murder and sentenced to life without parole. The US Supreme Court held that a juvenile cannot be sentence as such, the 8th amendement (which bars cruel and unusual punishment) to the US Constitution forbids such a sentence.more
John Goodman was convicted of DUI manslaughter in West Palm Beach. After is conviction, the Judge sentenced hhim to 16 years in prison affter the conviction. However, his lawyers are trying to get him a new trial. That motion for a new trial was denied however the fight still goes on. Lawyers are now asking the Judge to throw out the conviction based on juror misconduct. One juror in particular conducted a drinking experiment during his tenure as a juror. The defense believes they are intilted to a new trail , the state disagrees. The fight will go on.more
Law enforcement agencies have been in the news more often than not for the misconduct they have committed
Law enforcement agencies have been in the news more often than not for the misconduct they have committed. With all of the instincts of police misconduct you hear about in the news, there are three to four times more that you do not hear about. So the question is, do you trust the police? As an experienced trial lawyer in Broward County, I see more and more jurors saying that they do not trust the police. I have more and more clients say to me, “that’s not how things went down!” after reading the police report. I guess this question can only be answered by the individual being asked.more
Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law is being called into question by the recent events surrounding the Trayvon Martin death
Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law is being called into question by the recent events surrounding the Trayvon Martin death. Florida Statute chapter 776 defines the use of force. In general it means, a person may use force in self-defense when there is reasonable belief of a threat, without an obligation to retreat first. In some cases, a person may use deadly force in public areas without a duty to retreat. The question in the Trayvon Martin case is did the shooter have a reasonable belief the violence was imminent before he shot Trayvon Martin. The answer is now in the hands of Duval County State Attorney Angela Corey. She has the option of taking the case to the grand jury, filing charges against the shooter, or declining to file charges. Only time will tell.more
Recently in the news in Broward county, there has been an issue with a Dade County police officer speeding through Broward County and being pulled over by a Florida Highway Patrol officer. The Dade County officer was not cooperative and reports indicate that he did not pull over for quite some time. The trooper actually got him out of the car at gunpoint. Since this incident, investigations have ben conducted regarding police officer speeding using the sunpass system. The investigation has had alarming results, cops speed all the time both on and off duty. Some cops exceed 100 mph on certain stretches. Is anything done about this? For the most part, no. The moral of the story, some cops believe they can do whatever they want. From speeding on the road to changing testimony in Court to secure a conviction. If you have encountered this problem, call DiRenzo Defense, we can help.more
The Broward Sheriff’s Office was serving a search warrant on a house. Prior to serving a search warrant, Florida Law requires that the police “knock and announce” their presence before entering the residence. The defense filied a Motion to Suppress alledging that the police did not knock and announce their presence. A hearing was held and the lead detective an the case testified that the SWAT team knocked on the door very loud … They yelled very loud, Broward Sheriff’s Office, SWAT Team, Search Warrant, Broward Sheriff’s Office, SWAT Team, and pretty much the whole team yelled it, not just the reachers, the person that is conducting the knock and announce … the person at the front knocked on the door, yelled Broward Sheriff’s Office, SWAT Team, search warrant. Then the rest of the team also repeats it so there is no way to misunderstand it.
However, there is a video taken by the crew of the Police Women of Broward County that completely contradicts the lead detectives testimony. The video shows the police walk right up to the front door, turn the knob, and walk...more
In order to provide a reliable breath test, you must blow enough air into the machine in order to obtain a valid result.
In order to provide a reliable breath test, you must blow enough air into the machine in order to obtain a valid result. This air is measured by a “flow sensor”. In some breath machines around the state, these flow sensors may be malfunctioning. The minium amount of air required for a valid sample is 1.1 liters of breath. This minium is required as the machine are attempting to get to the “deep lung air” as that is the air that most closely resembles ones blood alcohol level. Apparently, some machines were reporting breath levels (liters of breath) that were well in excess of what the human body can actually produce. This could lead to inaccurate results. Also, this is an indication that the machine was not working properly and your breath results may be excluded from evidence.more
When someone is arrested and charged with a drug offense, police officers often rely on a “field test” to confirm the substance is an illegal substance. However, a commonly used field test known as the NarcoPouch is being called into question.
An example is a case that occurred in Broward County earlier this year. A woman parked her truck and went for a hike to a remote canal in the woods to watch birds and be one with nature. While in the woods , she lit a “smudge stick,” which is a combination of sage, sweet grass, and lavender, and placed it in a bowl. When she returned to her truck, law enforcement confronted her. One spotted her incense and asked if he could see it. He took the bowl and incense, asking whether it was marijuana.
Law enforcement believed it smelled like marijuana and conducted the field test, which proved ‘positive for marijuana.’ She was eventually arrested. The substance later turned out NOT to contain marijuana. The problem with the test, in addition to identifying marijuana or hashish, the D-L test frequently reads positive for tea,...more
Law enforcement agencies in South Florida have been cracking down on “pill mills” throughout South Florida.
Law enforcement agencies in South Florida have been cracking down on “pill mills” throughout South Florida. In the past few months, law enforcement has arrested numerous doctors and owners of pill mills. The investigation of these places can take months or even years. When law enforcement believes they have obtained enough information, they move in. People from all over the United States travel to South Florida to obtain medication from these pill mills. If you or someone you know is under investigation for something like this, be sure to contact a Ft. Lauderdale criminal defense attorney immediately so we can protect your rights.more
Many prospective clients ask, “do I need a lawyer?” Unfortunately, the answer is, “it depends.” If you are charged with a Federal Crime or a Felony Offense then you need a lawyer. In fact, a Judge will not allow a defendant to represent themselves in those Courts without a detailed inquiry as to the individuals ability to defend themselves. It is best to get a criminal defense lawyer involved as soon as possible. Criminal defense lawyers can speak with case filers in an attempt to have your case dismissed before charges are filed. They can explain what options you may have available based on your charges (for example, drug court programs or pre trial diversion programs). Criminal defense lawyers can review police reports, take depositions, file motions to suppress or dismiss, and speak with prosecutors about having charges dropped on your behalf. More importantly, criminal defense lawyers counsel their clients on the best course of action for their situation. If you were arrested and do not know if your should hire a lawyer, call Direnzo Defense today and we can answer your...more
A big blow to the prosecution of drug cases in the State of Florida. A federal judge declared Florida’s drug statute unconstitutional as it lacks the element of intent. This means that thousands of drug cases could be lost throughout the State of Florida. Florida is the only state in the nation that does not require intent as an element of their drug crimes according to Criminal Defense Lawyers. For example, if a student who hides his cocaine in a friend’s backpack without telling him. The friend, having no idea cocaine is in his backpack, can be found guilty under the law even though he had no intent to possess cocaine and didn’t know it was there.
The Judge simply restored the element of intent to Florida’s drug laws. This is to ensure that innocent conduct is not punished. If you are charged with a drug offense in Florida, please contact a Ft. Lauderdale Criminal attorney to determine how this may apply to your situation.more