Attorney here: just got 2 DUIs in 2 weeks, tips, advice, please. But trolling ----->

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daman

Attorney here: just got 2 DUIs in 2 weeks, tips, advice, please. But trolling ----->

Post by daman » Thu May 30, 2019 3:36 am

Ok, so I'll just lead with this. I can accept the occasional toxicity on here/TLS, as I've been an intermittent member for the past 8 years or so. It's part of the charm, xoxo. But if people offended by my life wanna pile on and completely sidetrack my actual post seeking actual advice from my heart, I'll just dip, and it's not cuz it was a "flame" or whatever.


Adding after writing the rest below, just to provide some context I felt relevant and otherwise missing as to my maybe atypical view/priorities and hierarchy of the potential punishments: I live in a town of population 4,700, what many would call a resort or vacation town. Except I live here year round, and it's my home for the recent portion of my life. Right now it is down season, so very quiet, besides us "locals." I drive into my "prestigious" law firm office in the big city maybe 2-3 days per week, which is 83 miles, and, if I time it right, about 80 minutes. When I'm slower at work, I go in more to have fun with summers and 1st years and such, and when I'm busy pulling all-nighters I don't leave the 100 foot radius of my condo. They're cool with it because I am very well liked there, but I have come to *hate* my work for my current firm, and have been looking to move to a particular landing spot, as I mention below. I added this point mostly because driving "privileges" are an extreme necessity to me. There's no Uber here most of the time that could get me to the office -- we have a locals FB group for rides around town or to the airport and stuff like that where people usually trade weed or something like that. So yea, I'd rather do a short time in jail (short enough that I can just call it an "Out of Pocket Vacation") than deal with driving restrictions for N>1 years. I'm also sitting at 249 hours on this month rn, so I don't see how I would make a 6-7 hour work release from Jail work either -- to me it seems easier to just say I'm 100% unavailable than explain a legitimate hard stop after X:00 o'clock.



So, my main question here: I sent an AllAtty out to my colleagues a few days ago and got several glowing recommendations for attorneys to help me out here. How TF do I pick one atty over another? Does it really make a difference? Is there a way to tell a shyster that just wants to get me to accept a shitty plea, versus someone that will really really work for deal that's in my best interest and/or take a potential argument to trial if necessary?

Note that, at least according to the responses I got (mostly partners LOL), these are not schlums. I expect them to be pricey and do a good and thorough job, as I would do for a client if I knew the subject matter.

Despite being an attorney for the better part of a decade now, I've never hired a lawyer before, and as I'm sure most on this forum would agree, biglaw is a totally different world than what I'm talking about.

Note that, because of some (IMHO) legitimately draconian and barbaric law that I am just now discovering, I need to make this decision by tomorrow. Not sure if that's enough time for anyone to notice, but I appreciate anything from a good heart. As for the law, (going only from the layperson shit I could dig up today), apparently if you do not file, sua sponte, a written demand for a hearing at the DMV (!!) within 6 days (!!???!!) or else you waive all defense w/r/t driving privileges, any right to a hearing, and any right to contest any of the charges in this extra-judicial life ruining bullshit. Lovely admin state we've created......
Anyways, I'd rather have my attorney's sig on this, so I'm hoping to retain someone by Friday, but I'll file this myself if necessary.




Second: I've been on the VERY *VERGE* of submitting my official materials to a firm that has expressed mutual interest, in the same region.. Would be a nice raise, and I really want out of my current firm (not because I'm not succeeding, so I don't really *need* to go anywhere, but just because I hate it here). I'm not sure how these two pending charges would affect a potential background check. I don't even really recall doing background checks for the firms I've worked at, but I got each of those jobs before graduating LS so, could be different now I suppose, idk. Any advice here? Should I just ignore these? Should I press the lateral forward as fast as possible to get hired before these reach a final disposition? Or should I push the cases forward faster and try to hold off the job that I am very interested in (and they seem very interested in having me move over)?

Third, any general advice is welcome. I didn't intend this as a troll post, and I know some people here and generally in the world have strong feelings against DUIs (see below), but I kindly ask that if you may sidetrack my very honest plea for help and advice, please just click on to the next thread.




Finally, because I know some (most?) people would want to know, here's the general gist of it:

My last "charge" or whatever you wanna call it was a drunk in public during 1L. After doing the diversion program, it had essentially no effect on my life IIRC.


My first DUI charge: Game 1 of the Raptors @ Bucks, have roughly 4 beers (though I always get the higher ABV stuff) over like 3 hours at my favorite bar for sports, which is a 6 minute drive from my house, and a 1.1 mile drive on the freeway. I feel 100% fine. If I felt a little tipsy or wtv I would have driven like an upstanding responsible citizen so as to not attract attention and whatnot. But I felt fine, so I was fucking with my radio, slightly speeding, but mostly trying to get my sound system to connect to my stupid as bluetooth. I drifted a little bit over the line and the speed trap highway patrol dude in his normal spot (that I know, smfh) lights me up. Act 100% sober, thought I totally aced his sobriety tests. Still asks me to blow, I ask for a blood test, continue. yadayadayada, get blood drawn at hospital (haven't seen results yet), get to drunk tank, finally blow for the girl that checks non-legally your BAC so she knows when you can be released. At a 0.06. No wonder I felt fine. Smfh. Shoulda just been a speeding ticket (13 over) or cell phone or whatever. But fuck. Sucks, but hey what can I do.

Reflect a bit, have trouble spotting where I really went wrong, except that I acted like my normal sober-self driver when I had had a couple of beers, whereas if I felt tipsy I have driven like my grandma used to. "Fine, I'll deal with it. In the future, let's be extra cautious."


Fast forward to Game 5, Raptors @ Bucks, again. Same bar, fun spot, my favorite. I drove there, and it's SUPER empty this time of year, so I park around the corner on a darker street in the middle of about 70 spots (designed for tourist season) where I was the *only* one in the entire row. I admit I parked like a little bit of jackass w/r/t the lines and shit, as I typically do around here when there's 9,000 spots for 30 people. Anyways, this game was on a Thurs night, so basically the weekend, end up having a pretty good time, stay well after the game. Dip out from the bar around 1am when my homie gets kicked out. Fuck around with some snow bunnies for maybe half an hour and then go to my truck, (very little recollection of this). Well, I reason, ya know, I got a stupid ass DUI like barely a week ago, let's just chill and NOT drive, so I guess I fuck around on my phone or something and pass out on my actually very comfy front bench seat. My last text was at 1:32 so probably passed out right around there. Wake up in a complete daze to cops banging on my window, yada yada yada, cite me for another DUI... I know this time that I am certainly over the limit so I refuse a BAC test, only ask for my lawyer but instead just get cited and put it a solo cell for a few days before they finally allow me to bond myself out. (Never allowed a phone call, wtf?) Thank God it was on a Thursday night so only disappeared for one business day. Review the charging docs and my phone afterwards, I found that I was likely asleep between 2-3 hours, and arrested in literally the middle of the goddam night. Oh and their stated probable cause was "welfare check," ohhhhh fuck off lying sacks of shit smfh. Shoulda just driven the 5 minutes home I guess, but I bitterly digress at this point so...

So yea, that's my two DUI charges. I'm not saying every reader will be chill with that, but I think it's pretty ridic to up against these kinda penalties. (Mandatory minimum time, loss of license for a number of years N>1, etc.).


Thanks for any input.

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Danger Zone
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Re: Attorney here: just got 2 DUIs in 2 weeks, tips, advice, please. But trolling ----->

Post by Danger Zone » Thu May 30, 2019 6:47 am

I don't have any advice for you unfortunately but just wanted to confirm that this is not a troll post by a rando.

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CS1775
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Re: Attorney here: just got 2 DUIs in 2 weeks, tips, advice, please. But trolling ----->

Post by CS1775 » Thu May 30, 2019 7:11 am

Danger Zone wrote:
Thu May 30, 2019 6:47 am
I don't have any advice for you unfortunately but just wanted to confirm that this is not a troll post by a rando.
If I'm understanding OP correctly, the questions are:

1) How do I find a good DUI attorney in Florida?
2) What will be the effects on an intended job change from the DUIs?

First q: generally speaking, there are certain members of the criminal defense bar who are noteworthy. In my state, one guy's name immediately stands out in my mind who would be recommended by law profs, defense lawyers, and members of the public (he's a 4.9/5.0 with 193 reviews on Google). Flip side is that he's, per his own words, "too busy to take a shit some days." I also have no idea what his rate is but I would imagine high in comparison to the average criminal defense lawyer in my state. However, OP is in BigLaw and is trying to maintain that, so money really should be no object within reason IMO.

Note that DUI lawyers are often a specialty within criminal defense lawyers. The closest I got to dealing with a DUI lawyer was a guy who did traffic tickets: I received one in State A and I needed to be in State B for an undergraduate exam on the court date, so I hired a lawyer to deal with it in my absence. How much overlap there is with DUI lawyers and CD lawyers depends on your market - a small bar means a lot of overlap, a large bar means not much overlap.

So my suggestion as to the first q is to ask around the local criminal defense bar about who is the best lawyer for DUIs. There should be a few who immediately stand out. Talk to law school friends, criminal law profs in the area if you went to a local (or in the same state) school, or members of the CD bar OP knows and trusts. Or talk to a guy who knows a guy. And don't be afraid to use Google reviews or some equivalent because if the public is happy, then there's a good chance other lawyers are happy too. Just scrutinize carefully and keep in mind that some places have fake Google reviews put up by employees or bots.

Edit: I re-read OP's post and I would just compare the attorneys suggested by the partners. Search all of them and see which one you prefer. Most criminal defense lawyers prefer to take cases to trial - its part of the job. Most clients want a nice, easy plea bargain that literally gets them out of jail the fastest. Only certain clients want to really "fight it" to trial and those clients are acting out of principle.

Second q: I have no idea. What I can say though is you should probably explain your concerns to whoever you hire for the DUI charges and suggest to them cooperating with an employment lawyer. But I know nothing about BigLaw and I would imagine its a very insular market with a lot of gossip and talk between big wigs in hiring.

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Jubo
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Re: Attorney here: just got 2 DUIs in 2 weeks, tips, advice, please. But trolling ----->

Post by Jubo » Thu May 30, 2019 3:32 pm

Firms vary on whether they do background checks or not, so I doubt anybody can help you without knowing what firm you're applying to. Unless you're confident that you can get both DUIs entirely erased, they're going to be there no matter what if the firm does a background check so what's the harm in applying?

As for picking a lawyer, recommendations are the best way.

Also, I'd work on your acting chops if I were you if you're planning on fighting these DUIs, as your lack of remorse/acceptance of responsibility, especially the "if I were more drunk I'd have been more careful about getting caught" thing is going to be a pain to deal with for any DUI attorney.

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MKC
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Re: Attorney here: just got 2 DUIs in 2 weeks, tips, advice, please. But trolling ----->

Post by MKC » Thu May 30, 2019 5:22 pm

Jubo wrote:
Thu May 30, 2019 3:32 pm
Firms vary on whether they do background checks or not, so I doubt anybody can help you without knowing what firm you're applying to. Unless you're confident that you can get both DUIs entirely erased, they're going to be there no matter what if the firm does a background check so what's the harm in applying?

As for picking a lawyer, recommendations are the best way.

Also, I'd work on your acting chops if I were you if you're planning on fighting these DUIs, as your lack of remorse/acceptance of responsibility, especially the "if I were more drunk I'd have been more careful about getting caught" thing is going to be a pain to deal with for any DUI attorney.
Dude had a .06 BAC the first time and was sleeping it off the second time. Not saying he won't have to suck it up and pretend to be sorry, but it's bullshit that he's in trouble in the first place. Last I checked, .06 is still fucking legal. If they legislature wants to go zero tolerance, then whatever I guess, but both charges are bullshit as it stands.

I will never understand why sleeping it off in your car can get you a DUI. Motherfuckers shouldn't be able to arrest you until the car moves.

daman

Re: Attorney here: just got 2 DUIs in 2 weeks, tips, advice, please. But trolling ----->

Post by daman » Fri May 31, 2019 12:40 pm

Thanks for the replies guys. Will come back to this later on today, but appreciate the couple of tips and thoughts.

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Jubo
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Re: Attorney here: just got 2 DUIs in 2 weeks, tips, advice, please. But trolling ----->

Post by Jubo » Fri May 31, 2019 1:04 pm

MKC wrote:
Thu May 30, 2019 5:22 pm
Jubo wrote:
Thu May 30, 2019 3:32 pm
Firms vary on whether they do background checks or not, so I doubt anybody can help you without knowing what firm you're applying to. Unless you're confident that you can get both DUIs entirely erased, they're going to be there no matter what if the firm does a background check so what's the harm in applying?

As for picking a lawyer, recommendations are the best way.

Also, I'd work on your acting chops if I were you if you're planning on fighting these DUIs, as your lack of remorse/acceptance of responsibility, especially the "if I were more drunk I'd have been more careful about getting caught" thing is going to be a pain to deal with for any DUI attorney.
Dude had a .06 BAC the first time and was sleeping it off the second time. Not saying he won't have to suck it up and pretend to be sorry, but it's bullshit that he's in trouble in the first place. Last I checked, .06 is still fucking legal. If they legislature wants to go zero tolerance, then whatever I guess, but both charges are bullshit as it stands.

I will never understand why sleeping it off in your car can get you a DUI. Motherfuckers shouldn't be able to arrest you until the car moves.
As I understand it, it's sort of like the same justifications behind strict liability. You're going to be over-inclusive and capture people who "weren't doing anything wrong," but because as a society we really don't want DUIs, we're going to cast as wide a net as possible.

You could take the position that strict criminal liability is always ridiculous and unacceptable (like possession of CP or statutory rape or something), but this sleeping-in-car DUI rule is not that unique.

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MKC
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Re: Attorney here: just got 2 DUIs in 2 weeks, tips, advice, please. But trolling ----->

Post by MKC » Fri May 31, 2019 1:25 pm

Jubo wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 1:04 pm
MKC wrote:
Thu May 30, 2019 5:22 pm
Jubo wrote:
Thu May 30, 2019 3:32 pm
Firms vary on whether they do background checks or not, so I doubt anybody can help you without knowing what firm you're applying to. Unless you're confident that you can get both DUIs entirely erased, they're going to be there no matter what if the firm does a background check so what's the harm in applying?

As for picking a lawyer, recommendations are the best way.

Also, I'd work on your acting chops if I were you if you're planning on fighting these DUIs, as your lack of remorse/acceptance of responsibility, especially the "if I were more drunk I'd have been more careful about getting caught" thing is going to be a pain to deal with for any DUI attorney.
Dude had a .06 BAC the first time and was sleeping it off the second time. Not saying he won't have to suck it up and pretend to be sorry, but it's bullshit that he's in trouble in the first place. Last I checked, .06 is still fucking legal. If they legislature wants to go zero tolerance, then whatever I guess, but both charges are bullshit as it stands.

I will never understand why sleeping it off in your car can get you a DUI. Motherfuckers shouldn't be able to arrest you until the car moves.
As I understand it, it's sort of like the same justifications behind strict liability. You're going to be over-inclusive and capture people who "weren't doing anything wrong," but because as a society we really don't want DUIs, we're going to cast as wide a net as possible.

You could take the position that strict criminal liability is always ridiculous and unacceptable (like possession of CP or statutory rape or something), but this sleeping-in-car DUI rule is not that unique.
It might not be unique, but it's still dumb. You've actually created an incentive for drunk people to drive home instead of sleeping it off in the car. Not every place has convenient cab/uber service and even in places that do, not everyone can afford it.

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ggocat
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Re: Attorney here: just got 2 DUIs in 2 weeks, tips, advice, please. But trolling ----->

Post by ggocat » Fri May 31, 2019 4:10 pm

The only "sleeping in a car" DUIs I've ever seen upheld in my state (not FL) were based on a reasonable assumption that the person drank, operated (drove or started), and then fell asleep. i.e., the vehicle was located on the side of a public road, or the car was running. In OP's situation, it sounds like cops had probable cause to arrest but there should be insufficient evidence for a conviction beyond a reasonable doubt for the second offense.

Blowing a .06 (or having blood drawn at that level) way after the fact, coupled with some expert retrograde extrapolation testimony, could get to a conviction on the first offense though.

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Re: Attorney here: just got 2 DUIs in 2 weeks, tips, advice, please. But trolling ----->

Post by Pratis » Sat Jun 01, 2019 3:48 pm

No advice on the DUI lawyer, but you probably want to talk to a lawyer that handles ethics charges before you take a deal. In my state, a DUI is an effectively automatic six-month suspension and a second would be two years. I don’t know if most states are that harsh but I would want to figure that out before taking any deal.

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Re: Attorney here: just got 2 DUIs in 2 weeks, tips, advice, please. But trolling ----->

Post by bikeflip » Sat Jun 01, 2019 6:52 pm

Pratis wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 3:48 pm
No advice on the DUI lawyer, but you probably want to talk to a lawyer that handles ethics charges before you take a deal. In my state, a DUI is an effectively automatic six-month suspension and a second would be two years. I don’t know if most states are that harsh but I would want to figure that out before taking any deal.
This. And talk to an ethics attorney about when you're supposed to report criminal items to the bar. Some states could have you report as soon as you're cited.

daman

Re: Attorney here: just got 2 DUIs in 2 weeks, tips, advice, please. But trolling ----->

Post by daman » Sun Jun 02, 2019 12:25 am

bikeflip wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 6:52 pm
Pratis wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 3:48 pm
No advice on the DUI lawyer, but you probably want to talk to a lawyer that handles ethics charges before you take a deal. In my state, a DUI is an effectively automatic six-month suspension and a second would be two years. I don’t know if most states are that harsh but I would want to figure that out before taking any deal.
This. And talk to an ethics attorney about when you're supposed to report criminal items to the bar. Some states could have you report as soon as you're cited.
thanks, i can't believe that would be the case here but I'll look into it, for sure.Some states are goddam puritanical when it comes to alcohol and stuff. (In the legislature). I'm not even a liberal and I know it's this state's conservative 70 year olds making it so in one county you get probation for a minor drug dealing offense and in another 25 miles away you get 5 years including prison. It's goddam absurd and regressive

Ayways, OP here, updating, I filed my own petition to get my driving privileges reviews. I'll be meeting with the lawyers this coming week, and planning to pretty much just do whatever they suggest as best.

Also appreciate the relative respect for the sitch from everyone in here. Honestly it still hasn't hit me yet but I know this is gonna be a big turning point in my life in one way or another.

(I can see why ppl are saying Florida, Lol -- can neither confirm nor deny), but I've been a well respected attorney in the region for my whole career. I've been on the legal aid staff for 3 years... I am a litigator and I think...JHMO.... I'm very good at what I do, and thats why I would think there might be some teeth to that kind of an argument at trial regardless of the statutes. But I will certainly rely on the advice of my council, which I'm still working out.

I'm slowly accepting that this shit is gonna really affect my life, I really don't think I'm the person that I'm sure the state who's life they want to ruin with these kindsa things.

Idk. Thanks everyone

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Re: Attorney here: just got 2 DUIs in 2 weeks, tips, advice, please. But trolling ----->

Post by Guest » Mon Jul 01, 2019 1:38 pm

Is is legal to sleep it off in your car if you're in the backseat of the car?

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CS1775
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Re: Attorney here: just got 2 DUIs in 2 weeks, tips, advice, please. But trolling ----->

Post by CS1775 » Mon Jul 01, 2019 9:12 pm

Guest wrote:
Mon Jul 01, 2019 1:38 pm
Is is legal to sleep it off in your car if you're in the backseat of the car?
Depends on the state. In my state, the prosecution has to prove: 1) operation; and 2) under the influence. There's a couple cases where there's no actual evidence of operation, which gets the case thrown out, like a guy sitting on a revving motorcycle but not operating it.

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Nony
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Re: Attorney here: just got 2 DUIs in 2 weeks, tips, advice, please. But trolling ----->

Post by Nony » Mon Jul 01, 2019 9:39 pm

"Operation" probably also depends where the car is - like if it's in the parking lot at the bar or in your driveway, that's different from if it's sitting by the side of the road or at a rest stop.

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