Leaving the scene of an accident: Can I leave a note?

Leaving the scene of an accident

If you hit a parked car and are unable to find the owner, most people understand the law to require that the driver at fault leave a note with his or her contact information. Under Florida law, however, this isn’t quite enough as Florida statutes require that the accident be reported to the local police department.

Attorney William R. Moore also cautions that it is always a good idea to report a fender bender to the local police even where the other party does not wish to do so. We have seen many cases where the so-called victim agreed that the damage was nonexistent or so minor that an accident need not be reported only to find that they later contacted their insurance carrier and reported a hit-and-run.

Remember, if you are involved in an accident that does not involve injury, you must stop your vehicle at the nearest safe location. Information such as your name, address and registration number must be provided. Always contact law enforcement as well.

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Should I submit to roadside sobriety exercises?

If you are pulled over and suspected for DUI in Broward County Florida, the investigating officer will undoubtedly ask used to submit to roadside sobriety exercises. Many people unknowingly attempt to perform the one leg stand, finger to nose and heel-to-toe exercises despite there being no legal requirement to do so. These sobriety exercises are always recorded either at the scene via in car cam or at the breath alcohol testing facility in Broward County.

DUI roadside exercises can be powerful evidence.

According to DUI attorney William R. Moore, videotaped field sobriety exercises are often the most powerful piece of evidence that can be used by prosecutors to convict a DUI defendant. If performed correctly however, the value of this evidence shifts completely to the defense and is often used to acquit. It all comes down to how well the individual performs and to what extent it contradicts the written observations in the corresponding police report prepared by the investigating police officer.

DUI roadside sobriety exercises are completely voluntary.

Most people are not aware that roadside sobriety exercises are completely voluntary and that they do not have to submit. Police officers are clever when investigating a suspect in the manner in which they “ask” an individual if they wish to perform. Specifically, the language used is often something to the effect that the suspected driver may be able to dispel the officer’s belief that he or she is impaired by drugs or alcohol.

The truth, however, in 99% of all cases is that the officer, already having probable cause to believe that a DUI is been committed, is going to make an arrest and their reason for requesting roadside sobriety exercises is to enhance the likelihood of obtaining a conviction down the line.

Roadside sobriety exercises are extremely difficult to perform even by those who are completely lucid.

Roadsides are divided attention tests that have no resemblance to any physical activity performed naturally in a person’s life. They are not only unfamiliar by vast majority of people they are also difficult. Police officers make them look easy when demonstrating as they have practiced them thousands of times in anticipation of submitting them to suspects. This is not to say that they cannot be performed successfully. Attorney William Moore has seen thousands of videos whereby defendants, previously arrested for DUI, performed excellently. These cases almost always result in an acquittal regardless of accompanying intoxilyzer evidence to the contrary.

Should you submit to roadsides?

This answer depends solely on a suspects coordination, level of impairment, if any and their ability to follow instructions and ask questions if needed. If you don’t believe that you will successfully be able to perform the tests (exercises under the law) it is often best to decline, obviously. If you are of the opinion however, that you will be able to avoid an arrest by dispelling the officers belief after submitting to roadsides, remember that 99% of the time, the officer has already made the decision to arrest you and will do so regardless of your performance.

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Event data recorders: Automobile black-box information in DUI manslaughter cases

DUI Manslaughter Evidence | Attorney William R. Moore

The first form of an automobile “black box” was first introduced by General Motors in 1990. Although somewhat rudimentary in comparison to today’s event data recorders, the DERM system served a very similar function and paved the way to the widespread use of the ever-evolving device used today. Use of the device was so successful when first introduced that crash impact recorders were approved just three years later by the United States Auto Club for use in the 1993 Indianapolis 500.

Since that time EDRs had become standard equipment on production automobiles which has led to much debate regarding use of the evidence obtained by them in Florida criminal cases. Arguments with regard to the accuracy of data obtained as well as privacy issues have fallen in favor of EDR devices on both accounts.

In Florida, evidence obtained by an automobile’s black box is considered widely accepted in well-established technology. Although both the device and the data recorded by it are considered property of the vehicle owner, the state of Florida provides no significant privacy protection when it comes to criminal prosecution according to criminal defense attorneys. Both prosecutors and the courts have found that an individual simply does not have the same expectation of privacy with regard to blackbox data as opposed to the automobile in general.

Criminal investigators have a duty to preserve EDR evidence

When a police officer reconstructs a collision with the intent of utilizing the results of the investigation or furtherance of criminal prosecution than that officer should preserve any event data recorder information. Although most commonly used to establish the speed at which a DUI manslaughter defendant was driving at the time of the crash, EDRs also record information specific to the date and time of the collision, depth of the accelerator pedal, steering angle, breaking pattern, throttle position, turn signal operation, seatbelt status, airbag deployment status and the force of impact. The prosecution’s use of this information has not only been used successfully by the State Attorney’s Office in drunk driving cases involving significant injury or death but also in hit and run cases involving a fatality, culpable vehicular homicide and premeditated murder cases (where EDR data discredited a defendant account of how the victim was killed).

Black box evidence can significantly impact either the prosecutor’s or defense lawyer’s case

William R. Moore DUI Evidence LawyerAccording to William R. Moore, a criminal defense attorney in Fort Lauderdale Florida, blackbox evidence is extremely powerful when used in conjunction with expert traffic crash investigators. The corroborative evidence can be quite significant when it comes to either bolstering or discrediting either the prosecutor or defense attorney’s expert witness. Occasionally a DUI manslaughter or vehicular homicide case will involve an automobile that became airborne prior to the collision resulting in very little tire tread evidence which is crucial to an accurate investigation. In such cases, event data recorder information can be considered paramount.

When asked how he felt about Florida’s denying right to privacy and reliability claims, attorney Moore explained that we have seen that same thing for years in DUI cases using CMI Intoxilyzers. A computer spits out data and prosecutors use it as their primary basis to prove their case beyond into the exclusion of any and all reasonable doubt. It’s kind of scary.

Questions about the use of automobile black box data evidence in Florida criminal cases, contact lawyer William R. Moore  directly by calling 954-523-5333 or visiting One Financial Plaza, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33394.

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Stand your ground law in Florida, a license to kill: Issues, application and controversy

Contact Fort Lauderdale Criminal Gun Crime Lawyer William Moore

Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law was enacted over a decade ago and has been the center of significant controversy in the wake of high profile cases such as George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin. Despite significant criticism of Florida’s expanding on a victim’s right to use deadly force in self-defense there have also been attempts to broaden the scope in favor of the law. In 2016, an attempt was made to further protect victims using deadly force by shifting the burden to prosecutors who would then be charged with the task of proving that the use of such force was not justified.

For those of you unfamiliar with the changes that Florida’s stand your ground law made to our criminal justice system consider the following:

10 years ago lawmakers succeeded in expanding Florida’s criminal law on self-defense with the goal of creating a less complicated and easier legal means for victims who used deadly force against an assailant. Under Florida law deadly force can be defined “in part” by use of a deadly weapon such as a firearm or knife. This of course can be expanded to include instances where an individual uses an automobile as a weapon and may also be defined by the act itself rather than the item used.

William R. Moore Firearm Lawyer in Fort Lauderdale FloridaThe specific language used by lawmakers was that these changes would provide a simpler, faster and cheaper legal path for those defending themselves against accusations relating to deadly force. According to Florida criminal defense lawyers, however, the law has shown to fail in this regard due to the fact that it requires poor defense strategy where a defendant elects to assert a stand your ground defense via a pretrial hearing. More will be discussed on this below.

What is Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law?

Florida’s stand your ground law expanded upon pre-existing self-defense statutes rather than creating a new type of affirmative defense for persons accused. Under sections 776.012 and 776.77 6.01377 6.013 Florida law now provides that a person is justified in using deadly force and has no duty to retreat if that person believes that deadly force is necessary to prevent death or great bodily harm to either him or herself or another.

Furthermore, under “stand your ground” Florida criminal law provides that where an assailant attempts to or enters a victim’s home or vehicle, or refuses to leave, that victim can be presumed to have a reasonable fear of death or great bodily harm so as to justify the use of deadly force the accused. The assailant will also be presumed to be acting with the intent to commit an unlawful act involving violence.

In criminal cases involving a home or automobile under this section, no evidence “per se” is required that tends to establish that the assailant actually intended to exert deadly force or that the person seeking protection under stand your ground was actually in fear.

William R. Moore Fort LauderdaleFor example, a person who accidentally walks into the wrong unit of their apartment complex could legally be shot dead on the spot by the lawful occupant. Furthermore, the person walking into the wrong apartment will be legally presumed to have been doing so with the intention of harming the occupants. Additionally, the occupants as a matter of law will be presumed to have had a justifiable fear that they were in danger of being killed. These presumptions will exist regardless of any actual intent or fear of the respective parties absent evidence to the contrary.

This is a drastic change from Florida’s original criminal justice system regarding the use of deadly force in self-defense cases.

Claiming self-defense where deadly force was used prior to Florida’s stand your ground law

Before Florida’s stand your ground laws came into effect, the use of deadly force in order to defend oneself was limited in the fact that individuals were required to use every possible means within their power to avoid the conflict. This duty to retreat was defined by higher courts over time to include such language as to the effect that individuals as a matter of law were required to “retreat to the wall” under the law. This duty to retreat stemmed from the earliest of laws otherwise known as common-law.

Who has the burden in stand your ground self-defense cases?

In practice, our criminal justice system revolves around burdens when it comes to the respective roles of both the prosecution and criminal defense attorney. For example, in order to prove a case, it is the state attorney who is considered to have the burden in proving a case beyond into the exclusion of any and all reasonable doubt. This pertains to every element of a crime.

Explanation via analogy: In a simple DUI case, the prosecution must prove that the defendant was driving a vehicle and that they were under the influence of an alcoholic beverage or controlled substance to the extent that their normal faculties were impaired. Individually, those are three elements, the first being that the defendant was driving. The fact that the defendant was driving must be proven beyond and to the exclusion of any and all reasonable doubt just as it must be proven beyond and to the exclusion of any and all doubt that they were under the influence of a controlled substance and thirdly that their normal faculties were impaired. This is considered the states burden.

See DUI in Florida

Other issues pertaining to criminal cases in Florida require the defense to incur the burden. Such is the current state of the law with regard to asserting a defense under stand your ground.

Originally, the legislature was unclear as to who bore the burden with regard to stand your ground and it was not until the fifth District Court of Appeals held that requiring the prosecution to prove that a defendant did not have the right to assert stand your ground would require the state to essentially prove the case twice. Ultimately, the higher court ruled that it was incumbent on the defendant to establish by way of a pretrial hearing that he or she was entitled to immunity from prosecution under the statute.

On the one hand, it is argued that if the state attorney believes that they can proceed in proving a case then they should easily be able to establish that a defendant is not entitled to immunity under Florida’s stand your ground law. On the other, it is maintained that a defendant should at least be forced to establish the lawfulness of their actions in exchange for immunity, which applies both criminally and civilly. This of course has raised issues with regard to the time of stand your ground pretrial hearings in relation to the ability and resources available to a defendant early on in the litigation.

Proposed changes to expand Florida’s stand your ground law in favor of the accused

In January 2016, the Florida Senate approved changes to Florida’s stand your ground laws that would have shifted the burden of proof to prosecutors. If made into law, this would have required the state attorney’s office in the appropriate jurisdiction to prove to the presiding criminal judge that a defendant was not entitled to immunity under the statute. Failure to do so would have required any further action against the defendant in any criminal proceeding. These changes were fully endorsed by the NRA. This bill, however was not considered on the House Judiciary Committee’s agenda for the 2016 session and the burden of proof remains on the defendant.

Criminal justice procedure and stand your ground self-defense cases

In order to assert protection from prosecution under Florida’s criminal law, the defense attorney and the accused must make the hard decision as to whether or not to request a pretrial hearing on the matter. This requires the defendant to testify and otherwise waive their right to remain silent and additionally tilt their hand as to the defense to be used should immunity be denied in the case proceed to trial. Many Florida criminal defense attorneys consider a request for immunity by way of a pretrial hearing to be malpractice.

Benefits to a criminal defense attorney’s choice to forgo a pretrial hearing

The majority view among criminal lawyers is that it is a better practice to proceed straight to trial and waive any right to a pretrial hearing under Florida’s stand your ground law. This preserves the defense theory of the case as well as their clients right to remain silent. Furthermore, a defendant does not have to admit to killing the named victim. A requirement in order to seek immunity through justification of the killing admitted to.

By going to trial, a criminal defense team can rely on jury instructions that clearly state what is considered a justified killing requiring a not guilty verdict. This is because Florida’s stand your ground laws are included in those instructions regardless of whether a defendant chooses to testify or not. Despite these instructions, defendants who choose to go to trial relying on the jury being instructed as to Florida’s stand your ground law are not technically considered stand your ground cases, rather, only cases involving a pretrial determination under the law.

Criticism and Last Man Standing Argument

Florida’s stand your ground law has been criticized by many. President Barack Obama even went as far as to say that Treyvon Martin could have been him 35 years ago. One of the most frequent criticisms of the law is that it allows the defendant some form of benefit by being the last and only word. This course presumes that all stand your ground defense claims will involve the actual killing of the victim.

This is not the case claims William R. Moore, a criminal defense attorney in Fort Lauderdale Florida.

“A large number of stand your ground cases involve scenarios where a defendant use deadly force against another and did not kill them. The law does not apply only to cases involving a deceased victim.”

Florida Statute 776.013 extends protections to not only dwellings but to cars as well

Although Florida’s stand your ground law falls under the heading “Home Protection”, many do not realize that under the same section individuals in an “occupied vehicle” are afforded the exact same right to use deadly force as if they were in the sanctity of their own home. This raises serious concerns with regard to the inordinately high number of road rage cases in South Florida.

“We have to consider that individuals may choose to stand and fight, exercising deadly force on our streets and highways rather than exercising an easy option to simply drive off” – Attorney William Moore

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Committing a Crime with an Unloaded Firearm

William R. Moore Criminal Lawyer | Firearm Defense

Recently the Broward County Sun-Sentinel reported on a case involving a robbery alleged to have taken place in Fort Lauderdale Florida. According to the victims, the assailant was armed with a handgun, which was pointed directly at her head.

See Sun-Sentinel Article: Armed robber fired empty gun at intended victims

According to police, the assailant attempted to fire the gun several times, however, no bullets discharged due to the fact that the gun was not loaded.

Criminal defense attorney William Moore states that the fact that the firearm was unloaded is obviously fortunate for the victim, however, will in no way negate the “robbery with a firearm” charges that have already been filed by the Broward County State Atty.’s office. The fact is that under Florida criminal law, it is not a defense to a firearm charge that the gun was not loaded.

A review of the Broward County criminal court case file revealed that the assailant was charged with one count of robbery with a firearm in addition to six additional counts such as aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. Attorney Moore pointed out that according to police reports the assailant hit at least one of the victims with the butt of the unloaded pistol.

No information was available as to whether or not the assailant had been previously convicted for a felony offense, nor whether or not he was licensed to carry a firearm. There did not appear to be any charges filed for carrying a concealed firearm nor possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

Robbery with a Firearm

Florida Statute 812.13 makes it a criminal offense to take property from another through forceful or violent means while in possession of a firearm. There is nothing in the statute that speaks to ammunition, meaning that the fact that the gun was unloaded is of no consequence from a criminal defense standpoint. In fact, use of the gun as part of the force required under the Florida statute is not necessary either. Meaning, an individual who pushes another to the ground in order to snatch their necklace can be charged and found guilty of robbery with a firearm where said assailant had a pistol in their back pocket.

Robbery with a firearm is a level 9 first-degree felony. Defendants convicted of robbery with a firearm are subject to minimum sentences under Florida’s 10-20-life firearm enhancement.

Questions regarding this case should be directed to attorney William R. Moore in Fort Lauderdale, Florida by calling 954-523-5333.

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Check Fraud Arrest in Broward County

Contact Broward County Fraud Defense Lawyer William R. Moore

A South Florida woman has been accused of cashing forged checks throughout the Broward County area throughout the month of March 2016. According to police officers over $25,000 worth of checks were actually cashed while approximately $7000 in checks were attempted to be negotiated. The woman accused of perpetrating the fraud is said to have given a full confession admitting to her involvement in an ongoing check fraud scheme. The fake checks were drawn on the account of a local business by the name of Superior Surfaces, a business that the accused had never worked for.

In addition to admitting tour involvement in the crime, police lineups were conducted whereby tellers involved positively identified the suspect. Thanks surveillance also shows the suspect completing the illegal transactions.

In a separate investigation, the defendant is accused of attempting to cash a check in the amount of $8625 drawn on Adelphia Automotive Services, a business for which the suspect had never worked. In that case, the teller handling the transaction became aware that the businesses checking account had been flagged for fraudulent activity. In that incident, the suspect fled the bank, leaving behind her driver’s license and the check she had attempted to negotiate which bore her thumbprint.

Criminal Defense Attorneys point out that both the companies owning the accounts fraudulently drawn on as well as the banks themselves can be considered victims in such a crime.

Florida Law on Check Fraud

831.28 Counterfeiting a payment instrument; possessing a counterfeit payment instrument; penalties.

(1) As used in this section, the term “counterfeit” means the manufacture of or arrangement to manufacture a payment instrument, as defined in s. 560.103, without the permission of the financial institution, account holder, or organization whose name, routing number, or account number appears on the payment instrument, or the manufacture of any payment instrument with a fictitious name, routing number, or account number.

(2)(a) It is unlawful to counterfeit a payment instrument with the intent to defraud a financial institution, account holder, or any other person or organization or for a person to have any counterfeit payment instrument in such person’s possession. Any person who violates this subsection commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

(b) The printing of a payment instrument in the name of a person or entity or with the routing number or account number of a person or entity without the permission of the person or entity to manufacture or reproduce such payment instrument with such name, routing number, or account number is prima facie evidence of intent to defraud.

(3) This section does not apply to a law enforcement agency that produces or displays counterfeit payment instruments for investigative or educational purposes.

The Elements of Uttering a Forged Instrument

Under Florida Statute § 831.02, the elements of the criminal offense of Uttering a Forgery Instrument include the following:

1uttering and publishing as true a false, forged, or altered instrument;

2knowing the instrument to be false, altered, forged, or counterfeited; and

3intending to injure or defraud.

Only intent to injury or defraud is required. In other words, it is not required that the intended victim was actually defrauded, only that the forged instrument was presented. For instance, if a forged check is presented at the bank, but the bank detects the forgery and does not cash the check, the prosecutor will still argue that the crime was committed because the forged check was presented to the bank with the intention to defraud.

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Broward County Crime News: Rolex Theft

Contact Theft Lawyer William R. Moore in Fort Lauderdale

According to the Broward County Sun Sentinel crime news section, a woman by the name of Subhanna Beyah has struck again it is being accused of seducing a wealthy victim, drugging and bringing him home with the intention of stealing his Rolex.
This comes less than three months after pleading guilty to the same type of crime in Broward County criminal Court. According to the disposition in that case, the similar crime took place in the year 2013, yet was resolved on January 29, 2016. Court documents reflect that Beyah pled to a single count of grand theft in the 1st° Degree and received a probation sentence of five years. This probation sense was transferred to Miami-Dade, however, Broward County still retains jurisdiction over the substantive case. Beyah’s January 2016 plea in Broward required that she was to pay $50 per month for the cost of her probation supervision, that she pay for random drug testing, that she not associate with the named victim in the case either directly or indirectly. Under the terms of the plea to the Broward County case, Beyah was also required as a special condition to testify truthfully and consistently against the codefendant in that case should the codefendant proceed to trial. The defendant was also required to remain in the day program of a facility known as the Camillus House.
According to the state of Florida Department of Corrections affidavit for violation of probation, Beyah is alleged to have violated the terms of her supervision even prior to picking up the most recent theft charge. According to reports, Beyah failed to comply with all instructions given to her by her probation officer and as grounds that she violated her probation, her assigned probation officer stated that on January 15, 2016 and again on February 2, 2016 the offender was instructed to comply with all conditions pursuant to her plea agreement at the Camillus House as instructed.
According to William R. Moore, a criminal defense attorney in Broward County, any new arrests will undoubtedly be added to the current charges for violation of probation.
Florida law regarding grand theft as it pertains to varying degrees of severity is as follows:
The crime of Grand Theft is defined in Section 812.014, Florida Statutes. Under the law, Grand Theft occurs where:
1.    The defendant knowingly and unlawfully obtained or used or endeavored to obtain or use the property of another,
2.    The defendant did so with the intent to temporarily or permanently (a) deprive the victim of his or her right to the property or any benefit from the property, or (b) appropriate the property of the victim to his or her own use or to the use of any person not entitled to it; and
3.    The property was valued at $300 or more.
Penalties for Grand Theft
In Florida, the penalties available for Grand Theft will depend on how the charge is classified. The classification applied to an offense generally depends on the value of the property taken. A higher value and higher degree of theft will generally subject the accused to harsher penalties.

Grand Theft: Third Degree

An offense will be charged as Grand Theft in the Third Degree if the property stolen is:
•    Valued at $300 or more, but less than $5,000;
•    Valued at $5,000 or more, but less than $10,000;
•    Valued at $10,000 or more, but less than $20,000;
•    A will, codicil, or other testamentary instrument;
•    A firearm;
•    A motor vehicle;
•    Any commercially farmed animal, including any animal of the equine, bovine, or swine class or other grazing animal; a bee colony of a registered beekeeper; and aquaculture species raised at a certified aquaculture facility. If the property stolen is aquaculture species raised at a certified aquaculture facility, then a $10,000 fine shall be imposed;
•    Any fire extinguisher;
•    Any amount of citrus fruit consisting of 2,000 or more individual pieces of fruit;
•    Taken from a designated construction site identified by the posting of a sign as provided for in s. 810.09(2)(d);
•    Any stop sign;
•    Anhydrous ammonia;
•    Any amount of a controlled substance as defined in s. 893.02.
Penalty: Grand Theft of the Third Degree is classified as a third degree felony, with penalties of up to 5 years in prison or 5 years of probation and a $5,000 fine.

Grand Theft: Second Degree

An offense will be charged as Grand Theft in the Second Degree if the property stolen is:
•    Valued at $20,000 or more, but less than $100,000;
•    Cargo valued at less than $50,000 that has entered the stream of interstate or intrastate commerce from the shipper’s loading platform to the consignee’s receiving dock;
•    Emergency medical equipment, valued at $300 or more, that is taken from a facility licensed under chapter 395 or from an aircraft or vehicle permitted under chapter 401; or
•    Law enforcement equipment, valued at $300 or more, that is taken from an authorized emergency vehicle, as defined in s. 316.003.
Penalty: Grand Theft of the Second Degree is a Second Degree Felony, with penalties up to 15 years in prison or 15 years of probation, and a $10,000 fine.

Grand Theft: First Degree

An offense will be charged as Grand Theft in the First Degree if the property stolen is:
•    Valued at $100,000 or more or is a semitrailer that was deployed by a law enforcement officer; or
•    Cargo valued at $50,000 or more that has entered the stream of interstate or intrastate commerce from the shipper’s loading platform to the consignee’s receiving dock; or
•    If the offender commits any grand theft and: (a) In the course of committing the offense the offender uses a motor vehicle as an instrumentality to assist in committing the offense and thereby damages the real property of another; or (b) In the course of committing the offense the offender causes damage to the real or personal property of another in excess of $1,000.
Penalty: Grand Theft of the First Degree carries penalties of up to 30 years in prison, with a maximum fine of $10,000.

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South Florida man arrested second time for crime of impersonating a police officer

Contact Criminal Lawyer William R. Moore in Fort Lauderdale

Recently a South Florida man was accused of falsely impersonating a law enforcement officer for the second time. Jeffery Jean is 30 years old and was awaiting trial on an earlier impersonation case. The suspect had been operating his vehicle as if responding to an emergency by utilizing both flashing lights and sirens. Following arrest, Jean was charged with possession of a weapon and ammunition by a convicted felon, impersonating a police officer, possession of cannabis and reckless driving among other offenses.

On April 17, 2016 officers observed what looked like an unmarked vehicle with full lighting flashings and siren blasting as it was attempting to navigate through heavy traffic that had backed up following a traffic crash. Broward County Sheriff’s officers reported that the vehicle was tailgating other vehicles, cutting from left to right without yielding to the right-of-way of other drivers. The suspects actions forced westbound vehicles off the roadway who were attempting to avoid an accident.

The 2016 black four-door Chevy Malibu did not appear to be a standard police or emergency vehicle, which drew suspicion from police officers who attempted to intervene. Upon observing police officers in his path, suspect Jeffrey Jean immediately turned off all emergency equipment and attempted to steer away from officers in his path.

Upon being stopped, the suspect first claimed to be responding to an emergency call but later admitted that he was just trying to avoid traffic driving home from work. Police officers noticed a strong smell of marijuana coming from the vehicle and pursuant to search located the suspect cannabis. The suspect was decked out in full tactical police gear including a firearm and tazer that were strapped to his belt.

Upon being told that the he was “running code 3”, the suspect responded “no, I was running code 2”.

Upon questioning, Jean admitted that he confiscated drugs from club patrons which were normally kept in his trunk until disposing of them.

See Sun-Sentinel Article: Man trying to dodge traffic posed as police officer – again, investigators say

According to Criminal Lawyer William R. Moore, Florida Law Prohibiting the act of Impersonating a Law Enforcement Officer occurs when an individual falsely assumes or pretends to be a police officer and takes it upon him or herself to act as a law enforcement officer. Impersonating a law enforcement officer is a third-degree felony in the state of Florida unless enhanced due to the impersonation taking place during the commission of a felony in which case it becomes a second-degree felony punishable by up to 15 years in a Florida State prison. Where death results as a result of the impersonation, the crime will be charged as a first-degree felony in Florida.

More information on arrests for impersonating a law enforcement officer in Florida may be obtained by contacting criminal defense attorney William R. Moore.

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Conflicting advice about obtaining a hardship license following an arrest for DUI in Florida.

DUI Work Purposes Driving Permit in Florida

There is an abundance of conflicting information out there when it comes to immediately obtaining a work purposes driving permit from the Florida Department of Motor Vehicles following an arrest for DUI. Until changes in the law went into effect in 2013, persons arrested for driving under the influence would have to wait either 30 days or 90 days to even apply for a temporary driver license. This created an unimaginable hardship for people who needed to drive to and from work and suddenly found themselves without an ability to do so. Additionally, prior to the changes, it was always advisable to apply for a formal review hearing where your retained DUI defense attorney would stand a very good chance of having your license reinstated due to the fact that officers often failed to appear even when subpoenaed. South Florida police officers would routinely cite scheduling conflicts as a basis if they even responded at all.

Much as changed in the South Florida DUI defense arena in the past few years. In the Tri-County area, Broward is the only jurisdiction to not yet adopt first-time offender diversionary programs for individuals arrested for DUI. Additionally, in specific to this article is the fact that in most cases filing for a formal administrative review hearing with the Department of Motor Vehicles seeking to overturn a driver license suspension without a solid reason for doing so is the less attractive option.

For more on the current state of how to obtain DUI hardship license following an arrest is available by listening to criminal defense attorney William R. Moore’s recent iTunes and Googleplay podcast on the issue.

See more on this subject: How to obtain a DUI Hardship License.

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VICTIM WAIVER OF PROSECUTION IN DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CASES

Contact a Criminal Defense Attorney in Fort Lauderdale FL

Criminal defense attorneys in South Florida often find themselves defending clients accused of domestic violence where the victim in the case does not wish to prosecute. Most often, these victims mistakenly believe that the decision to prosecute is their decision and can be avoided by filing a waiver with the Broward County State Atty.’s office.

Unfortunately, prosecutors will proceed full force in attempting to obtain a conviction against that victims spouse or loved one regardless of a witnesses making it known that they do not want any further legal action to be taken in the matter.

From the onset, a no contact order will effectively prevent a spouse charged with domestic violence from returning to the family home. Victims seeking to have this order removed are cautioned to be prepared for a line of questioning from the assigned prosecutor to the case. Questioning aimed at obtaining sworn statements that an act of violence was committed against them by the defendant with whom they wish to have contact with.

Listen to the latest podcast “Waivers of Prosecution in Domestic Violence Cases” by Attorney William R. Moore

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