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Each year FBI crime data is released that focuses on the most dangerous states in the country. The state of Florida ranks 17th on the deadliest states scale, which means there are numerous cities within the state that have a high crime rating. 

The FBI uses statistics focusing on violent crimes, murder, property crimes, and more as their metric for making their determinations. From there, the data is compiled to map out the cities with the most crimes per capita, rounding out the top 10 most dangerous cities for 2021. 

Here is the list of the most dangerous cities in Florida: 

  1. Florida City: This is the most dangerous city in the entire state for 2021. For Florida City, violent crimes 100k is at 2,619, which is nearly 7 times higher than the national average of 366. 
  2. Lake City: Lake City has a population of about 13,000 in Lake City and is the #2 spot on this list again for 2021. Lake City has a high volume of larceny and property crimes per 100k, coming in at 6,432 while the national average is at 2,109. 
  3. Opa Locka: Opa Locka, Florida is a relatively smaller city in the northeastern area of Miami-Dade county. It is only 4.2 square miles, but takes the #3 spot on the list due to  very high numbers of violent crimes, robberies, and larceny. 
  4. Lake Park: Lake Park, FL has fewer than 10,000 residents, but due to their extraordinarily high volumes of larceny, property crimes, and violent crimes it takes the 4th spot on the list for 2021. Violent crimes in Lake park are nearly four times the national average. 
  5. Panama City Beach: This is a popular tourist area, known as PCB. PCB has an all-time high property crime rate at 6,347 per 100k, which is much higher than the 2,145 state average.
  6. Miami Beach: This area boasts some beautiful scenery and hotspots for nightlife, but that comes with high miami-885032_1920-300x225crime rankings. With so many tourists and visitors every year it is no surprise that this area sees its fair share of property and larceny crimes. Larceny is nearly 4 times as high in Miami Beach when comparing to the USA’s national average. 
  7. Perry: Perry, Florida is new on the list for 2021, taking the 7th spot. The crime rate in Perry is 108.94 percent higher than the national average. Most of the crimes in Perry involve property crimes, larceny, and burglary. 
  8. Daytona Beach: This is one of the most well-known cities in the state, but sadly also one of the most crime-ridden. Violent crimes in this area clock in at 1,137 per 100k, and while this might not seem, keep in mind that the national average is 366.  
  9. Cocoa: This city in Brevard County with a population of fewer than 20,000 residents take the number 9 spot on the list due to the crime rate in 20221 reacging 139.59 percent above the national average. FBI data shows that the crime rate for larceny in Cocoa is almost triple the national average and property crime is double. 
  10. Riviera Beach: Riviera Beach is in Palm Beach County and takes the 10th spot for 2021 due to the crime rate per 100k being 5,158. This statistic means that the crime rate in this area is 108.26 percent higher than the national average. 

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A former Palm Beach County, Florida deputy has been sentenced to three years in prison for attempting to rape a woman when responding to a call.

On Thursday, the 42-year-old man was sentenced in Palm Beach County circuit court after admitting guilt to battery and attempted sexual battery. His sentencing was a part of a plea bargain with the prosecution. 

His second trial was slated for later this month. 

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The state of Florida sees millions of tourists every year to have a relaxing vacation at the beach, a wild spring break trip for college students, or maybe even a fun bachelor/bachelorette party weekend. While having some fun in the sun is a great idea, things can turn sour quickly when travelers are arrested while vacationing. Whether you are facing a DUI, drug charges, solicitation, assault and battery, shoplifting, or any other criminal charges, our Florida Criminal Defense Attorneys at Whittel & Melton are here to offer our help. 

Dealing with an Out of State Arrest 

vacation-2218989_1920-300x205So what do you do now if you have been arrested while vacationing in Florida, but live somewhere else?  Don’t be fooled into thinking that just because you do not live in the state of Florida that if you leave and never come back that your arrest won’t follow you. If you ignore the charges against you then this could result in a warrant for your arrest in the state where you live. The best way to handle any criminal charges is to hire a local lawyer in the state where you were arrested who can assist with your legal matter. 

At Whittel & Melton, we know that dealing with an out of state arrest can be cumbersome. Traveling back and forth, spending money on gas or plane tickets and hotels, and missing time from work is not ideal, but it may be necessary depending on your situation. We may be able to keep you from having to come back and make an appearance in court or we can work with the prosecutors involved to only have you travel back for the most important dates. In most cases, we often find that we can make an appearance on your behalf so that you can save yourself a trip. 

In the event that you are facing more serious charges and will have to show up for trial, you need to make sure that you have the best legal defense possible so that you can benefit from a possible plea deal, which may result in more serious charges being reduced in exchange for your guilty plea on a lesser charge. While pleading guilty to any crime may not sound appealing to you, sometimes doing so can make your life easier and keep you from traveling back and forth. This can also spare you the consequences of a conviction if things don’t go as planned in trial. We will do everything we can to have the charges against you dropped whenever possible, but in cases where the evidence is overwhelming this just may not be an option. 

We will always review any evidence against you in order to determine what is in your best interests. If a plea deal is not something we think is of benefit to you, then we are trial lawyers that can fight for you in the courtroom in order to achieve the best possible results for your charges. 

The following are the common cases where our Florida Criminal Defense Attorneys at Whittel & Melton can appear on your behalf: 

  • If you are facing misdemeanor charges – When you are charged with a misdemeanor in Florida, you may be issued a Promise to Appear (PTA). This can provide you with the option to waive your presence in court and allow an attorney who is representing you to appear on your behalf. This will also allow your lawyer to accept a plea deal on your behalf. 
  • If your charges qualify for Pretrial Diversion (PTD) – If you are facing felony charges, but the offense in question qualifies for PTD, then you may be able to waive your presence for certain court appearances. 

Keep in mind that if you are arrested for a DUI while vacationing in Florida, then you will need to appear in court under the Interstate Drivers License Compact. Failing to appear will result in your driver’s license privileges being suspended and a warrant for your arrest may be issued. Your attorney will advise you on how to proceed after a DUI arrest and what you must do to avoid further consequences.  Continue reading

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A Hillsborough County high school teacher is facing various charges for allegedly engaging in sexual activity with a student for over a year, according to reports. 

The 46-year-old teacher is facing 12 counts of unlawful sexual activity with a minor for his alleged involvement with a female student who was under the age of 18.

The sheriff’s office claims that from the time period between November 2019 and last December, the teacher allegedly had sex with the student, who was apparently in the man’s Spanish class at one point. 

As of Saturday, the man remained in jail with bail set at $180,000.00. 

Investigators did not say how they came to find out about the alleged sexual activity between the teacher and student. 

Florida law does criminalize any sexual activity between people 24 or older and minors who are 16 or 17 years old. Accusations of sexual activity with a minor can be devastating for anyone, but this is especially true for educators, school officials, coaches, youth mentors, pastors, and anyone that is placed in a position of authority over children. The mere accusation that an educator was involved in a sexual relationship with a student or minor can lead to the immediate suspension of their teaching license and could result in an immediate suspension to their position or even permanent termination. Sex crimes allegations can negatively affect a teacher’s livelihood, their family relationships, their personal relationships, and every aspect of their life. 

There is so much at stake when sex crimes accusations come about. Law enforcement and prosecutors take these allegations very seriously and will conduct a lengthy investigation to determine what exactly happened. They often side with the victims in these cases even if the only evidence is a student’s word against the teacher’s, so it is absolutely essential to retain legal counsel as soon as you are made aware of the accusations or charges against you. You are in for a fight, and you must trust your attorney to defend your rights, future, freedom, and career. 

Our Florida Sex Crimes Defense Lawyers at Whittel & Melton fully understand how urgent and sensitive these situations are. As soon as allegations or criminal charges arise, we can piece together a strong defense on yoru behalf to help you avoid being labeled a sex offender for the duration of your life. We want to help you protect your good standing reputation within the community and keep your teaching career that you worked so hard for from being tarnished. We will do everything in our power to get you the best possible results for the sex crimes charges you are facing. 

What Is Considered an Inappropriate Relationship with a Student?

It is certainly not unheard of for teachers and educators to form close relationships with their students. Teachers are placed in positions to help guide students towards bright futures, so being supportive role models is often expected of them. However, there is a fine line between role model and mentor and being too close with a student. While some behaviors should be obvious to educators in regards to inappropriateness, all school employees and volunteers should keep the following improper interactions with students in mind before engaging: 

  • Any communications where an educator or school staff member solicits a romantic type of relationship with a student 
  • Making ill-suited comments about a student’s body 
  • Making sexually inappropriate comments to a student 
  • Making any comments about a student’s sexuality/sex life/potential sexual performance
  • Requesting details about a student’s sexual history 
  • Asking a student out on a date 
  • Any comments or conversations about sexual preferences, fantasies, problems, etc. 
  • Unprofessional behavior like hugging, kissing, or excessive touching
  • Hinting at a romantic relationship with a student once they turn 18 or graduate
  • Giving a student alcohol or drugs

Inappropriate behavior that occurs between a teacher and a student is taken very seriously by Florida school districts, police, and prosecutors. As we mentioned before, accusations regarding illegal sexual contact between an educator and a student can ruin your teaching career. Teachers and school staff must be very careful when it comes to their relationships with students as interactions can easily be misinterpreted and lead to criminal charges. Continue reading

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A week long undercover sex sting operation has resulted in the arrest of 79 people, including a high school girls’ basketball coach and a pastor. 

The sting was conducted by the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office and called “Operation Takedown,” and launched to coincide with the past weekend’s WrestleMania 37 that was held at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa.

The HCSO said that they believed the large even would yield a high number of people looking to take advantage of those in the Tampa community through human trafficking. 

Detectives created online profiles as part of the undercover operation to chat with men looking to engage in sex acts for money. They also had female detectives pose as prostitutes, according to reports. 

A 39-year-old pastor was arrested in the undercover operation. The Sheriff’s Office said that the man allegedly offered an undercover detective $25 for a sexual act after he took his children to their daycare. He is accused of reaching the deal with the undercover detective posing as a prostitute while his two kids were in the car with him. 

Another man, a 39-year-old assistant girls’ basketball coach, was arrested after allegedly answering an ad posted by the undercover officers. 

Both of the men are facing misdemeanor charges of soliciting another to commit prostitution. The pastor is facing two additional misdemeanor counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor due to the fact that his children were in the car with him when the alleged misconduct took place. 

The operation also resulted in two men being arrested on human trafficking charges. They were both arrested after allegedly responding to an escort ad to have sex with a 17-year-old girl. 

Another man, a 41-year-old registered sex offender, was arrested after he allegedly texted what he thought was a 14-year-old girl. He is facing charges of transmitting harmful material to a minor and traveling to meet a minor after using a computer to solicit illegal acts, as well as other charges, according to the HCSO. 

Many people make the mistake of cruising the Internet for escorts and wind up involved in an undercover prostitution sting. The presence of web-based sex crimes has only increased police efforts to catch and prosecute those believed to be sexual predators. Police often use aggressive tactics to entrap innocent individuals with no criminal history into various situations that lead to their arrest. Our Florida Internet Sting Operation Lawyers at Whittel & Melton know how police operate in these undercover stings, and we can put our knowledge to work for your benefit. If you or someone you love has been accused of responding to an ad posted by an undercover detective, then let us help you fight these charges. We are familiar with how police and undercover agents use social media, the Internet, as well as text messages and online chats to illegally trap those that have never had any run-ins with the law before. 

If you are arrested in an undercover Internet sting operation by the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office or any other agency, you can possibly face immediate consequences that can negatively impact your life. Your name and picture could appear online and show that you were arrested for solicitation or any other related charge. A public disclosure like this can tarnish your reputation in the community with friends and family as well as damage your job status. 

When police officers use undercover agents to lure unsuspecting individuals into soliciting sex acts, this opens the door to the very real possibility of entrapment or other illegal tactics made by law enforcement. Our Florida Internet Sting Operation Lawyers at Whittel & Melton can review all of the evidence against you and identify any unlawful tactics used by police right away. Depending on the facts of your case, we may be able to use this as leverage to persuade the prosecution for a dismissal of the charges or a reduction of the charges against you. Every case is different, and while we can make no guarantees on the outcome of your case, we can promise to passionately fight for your reputation and liberty. We understand how overreaching police officers work, and we have developed our own team of experienced investigators and computer forensic experts who can help us build the best defense strategy tailored to your case.  Continue reading

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Former NFL player and Tampa Bay Buccaneer tight end Kellen Winslow II has accepted a new plea deal that will placed him behind bars for 14 years for rape, assaul, and other misdemeanor sex crimes, according to the plea agreement entered Friday in San Diego Superior Court.

The new plea deal will replace a previous agreement from his November 2019 case, where he plead guilty to rape and sexual battery charges in order to avoid life behind bars. The previous deal had a sentencing range of 12 to 18 years in prison that would be decided by a judge following a sentencing hearing. 

37-year-old Winslow appeared remotely in a court hearing from jail in San Diego County. He told the judge he would like to agree to 14 years, according to reports. 

The new plea deal also includes a new guilty plea by Winslow who apparently assaulted a female hitchhiker in her mid-50s with the intent to commit rape in March 2018.  

law-1063249_1920-300x225Winslow’s sentencing hearing is set for March 3, which is when final judgement will come. 

The jury in Winslow’s first trial in the spring of 2019 could not reach a unanimous verdict on all his charges. Winslow was almost sentenced last year under the old deal, but the COVID-19 pandemic delayed Winslow’s sentencing scheduled for last March. 

The new plea agreement helps both sides avoid certain risks: the prosecutors avoid Winslow getting a shorter sentence and Winslow avoids a life in prison sentence, a risk associated with another trial. 

All of Winslow’s crimes took place in San Diego County. His first trial took place in June 2019 where a jury found him guilty of raping a homeless woman and exposing himself to a woman in his neighborhood in May 2018, as well as making a lewd gesture towards a woman at a gym in February 2019. 

Winslow also admitted guilt in November 2019 to raping an acquaintance while she was unconscious at a party in 2003, when she was 17 and he was 19.

In his new plea deal, he also pleaded guilty to assaulting the hitchhiker with the intent to commit rape.

Winslow has been in jail since March 2019, which will serve towards his 14-year sentence. 

At his first trial in spring 2019, Winslow was convicted by a jury for some of the charges against him.

In June 2019, the jury was unable to reach a unanimous verdict on the other charges against him, which led to a retrial scheduled for November 2019.

If the new jury had convicted him on the remaining counts, he could have faced life in prison. However, Winslow opted to avoid that risk by making a plea agreement. 

Winslow’s attorneys previously argued that he suffered from brain injuries from football and a motorcycle accident in 2005, which they said resulted in chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), which is linked to football head trauma. This frontal lobe damage is what his attorney’s believe led to changes in his behavior. They estimated he suffered more than 1,000 head injuries over the course of his football career, which ended in 2013. 

A sex crimes conviction is perhaps one of the more devastating convictions a person can face. You could be looking at years behind bars, large fines, and the lifelong requirement to register as a sex offender. This means your name and information will be made available to the public, you will face restrictions on where you can live and work, and you may not be able to visit certain public spaces. This is why you need to get legal help with a sex crimes accusation as soon as possible as your future and freedom are most certainly at stake. Our Florida Criminal Defense Lawyers at Whittel & Melton can help you understand your rights and legal options available to you in regards to the sex crimes charges you are facing. 

Why Do You Need to Hire a Sex Crimes Lawyer?  Continue reading

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A 49-year-old man was sentenced in Tampa federal court Wednesday to six years and six months in federal prison for his apparent involvement in what officials say was a $400,000 nationwide postal stamp hustle. 

According to court records, the man pleaded guilty to theft of government funds in September 2019. In addition to the prison time, the man has been ordered to repay the proceeds of the theft – $405,935.76 in total. 

IMG_1524-225x300Prosecutors believe the man used fake checks to buy stamps at various United States Post Office locations in Florida as well as Arizona, Alabama, Connecticut, California, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, Tennessee, and Virginia. 

Prosecutors said the man resold the stamps to stamp traders and other businesses. They also said the man used fictitious names when purchasing stamps as well as the identity of a deceased person. 

Prosecutors claim the man started his stamp scam in November 2016 and continued with it until his arrest in New Mexico in May 2019. 

If a federal agent with the Federal Bureau of investigation (FBI), the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) or the secret service, please understand the severity of the situation and that you could be the target of a federal investigation. 

If you think you are under investigation by a federal agency or have been contacted by a federal agent, then the first thing you should do is seek immediate legal representation with a federal criminal defense attorney. Our aggressive Florida Federal Criminal Defense Lawyers at Whittel & Melton are well equipped to take on your case in order to keep your rights protected and fight for your freedom. If you are the subject of a federal criminal investigation, then you need to act fast and start building an effective defense. You should contact us right away so that we can begin helping you immediately. 

What Makes a Federal Case Different from a State Case? 

State prosecutions involve local law enforcement who work on tight budgets and resources, and the federal government has virtually unlimited money, time, and other resources at its disposal. Federal cases receive a lot more attention than State ones and often move through the criminal justice system much faster. 

With that said, federal prosecutors are usually much more experienced as opposed to their State counterparts and federal prosecutors only take on cases they are confident that they will win. Federal investigators usually spend a large amount of time investigating these cases and collecting evidence, so preparing a strong federal criminal defense can be a daunting task.  

How Will I Know if the Federal Government is Investigating Me?

Different from State criminal prosecutions where suspects are not usually notified that they are under investigation for a crime, federal prosecutions will usually send their suspects letters to let them know that they are being investigated. 

Any notice of a criminal complaint or an indictment will also serve as notice that you are the subject of a federal criminal prosecution. As we said before, any notice that you receive should be taken seriously and you should retain legal counsel as soon as possible. 

On a similar note, if you are contacted by law enforcement executing a search warrant at your home or place of business, you should also seek legal counsel right away. 

Why Do I Need a Federal Criminal Defense Attorney? 

You need valuable legal advice and guidance if you are the target of a federal investigation. Before you respond to the federal government to try and clear your name, you should have a federal criminal defense lawyer on your side at the early stages of the investigation so that you do not say anything that could betray your own interests. Many people try to talk their way out of criminal charges, which can do more harm than good. There is quite simply no substitute to having a federal criminal defense lawyer guide you and advocate on your behalf.  

We cannot stress this enough: federal law enforcement agents are trained to get you to talk. They will deceive you into making harmful statements and they are trained effectively to get the information they want. Do not think for a second that speaking with federal law enforcement directly with no lawyer present will be to your advantage.  Continue reading

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The Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office says that the arrest of a 38-year-old man for drug trafficking resulted after they were able to allegedly link him to a storage unit near Royal Palm Beach as well as his Acreage home. 

Police believe the man kept methamphetamines, fentanyl, cocaine and oxycodone at the storage unit and his home. 

According to police, they seized almost 20 pounds of fentanyl from the storage unit that belonged to the man as well as thousands of oxycodone pills, bath salts, ecstasy, cocaine, around 28 pounds of methamphetamines, and plastic baggies.

The man is facing various drug charges, including trafficking fentanyl, cocaine, methamphetamines, and oxycodone.

His bail was set at more than $2 million. If released, he will be placed on in-house arrest. 

Investigators apparently visited the storage unit on Monday where they also found a photo of the man, which is what led them to his home. 

They apparently obtained a search warrant for his house and found several other drugs and paraphernalia. 

Police claim they recovered a pistol, rubber gloves and a respirator mask that is often used when working with chemicals in the man’s kitchen. 

In the man’s garage they claim to have found a pill press mold where he is suspected of producing counterfeit oxycodone pills using fentanyl.

Fentanyl is a very powerful narcotic that is around 100 times stronger than morphine and 50 times more potent than heroin. 

According to a Florida Medical Examiners’ report, fentanyl is responsible for killing 278 people in Palm Beach County in 2018, which is more than in any other county in the state. In the first half of 2019 (January to June), 155 people were killed from fentanyl overdoses in Palm Beach County, which is the third-highest total in any Florida county in that same time period.

Detectives went on to share in their report that they uncovered nearly 20 pounds of fentanyl and 33 pounds of marijuana. They also said they found possible bath salts in a child’s bedroom, narcotic gummies, and more cocaine throughout their search of the rest of the home. 

wheelie-bin-2270582_1920-300x200The PBSO did not share how they were tipped off to the man’s storage unit for potential drug trafficking. They did disclose that they did a “trash pull” from the man’s home on Dec. 29. 

It is not exactly clear how long the man has been on PBSO’s radar. 

According to a report, the accused has served time in federal prison for the intent to distribute drugs in 2008. He was convicted of supplying a woman with ecstasy pills that she sold, according to court documents. He pleaded guilty in 2009 and was sentenced to 30 months in federal prison. He was released in 2015. 

This case is interesting because it brings up how police use trash pulls, which are perfectly legal, to try and figure out what is going inside someone’s home. There is really no secretive way that police carry out a trash pull. They just go to a home or business where trash has been put out for collection and rummage through the contents. What are they looking for? Usually they are rifling through trash to uncover any possible drug residue from cocaine, marijuana, methamphetamines, fentanyl, etc. These drug remnants are often referred to as “shake.” They are also looking for any large amounts of cleaner or other products that are often used in the manufacture of drugs. If they find any information on who is living at the home, that is also useful information to police. If they find any documents that could suggest drug sales have occurred or any other evidence that points to the possibility of illegal activity, this is also helpful information that could result in a search warrant for the home or business being looked at. 

Police will usually monitor trash for several weeks just to be sure that they uncover enough evidence or can rule out any illegal behavior. It should also be noted that trash is not considered private property as the Supreme Court of the United States as well as the state of Florida has ruled that trash that has been placed on the curb for collection is classified as “abandoned property,” so police do not need a search warrant to pilfer through the contents. They also do not have to tell you that they are conducting trash pulls of your garbage.  Continue reading

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A Broward Sheriff’s Office Deputy was arrested for DUI just before Christmas 2020 by the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office. His 4 door silver 2014 BMW was stopped in Delray Beach after the vehicle was apparently involved in an accident that involved property damage.

The BSO Deputy was booked into the Palm Beach County Jail at 1:03 a.m. and released just two hours later, at 2:42 a.m., according to jail records. 

While the deputy’s case was the most high profile, several others were arrested around the same time just before the holidays when DUI arrests started to stack up. In fact, for 2020, PBSO and Delray Beach Police reported much higher rates than normal.

drinks-2578446_1920-300x200Two women were arrested for DUI on separate occasions around the same time as the deputy. Two other men were arrested on DUI charges in separate incidents as well. 

It is important to be clear that DUI arrests are only accusations and does not mean any of these people arrested are actually guilty of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Innocence or guilt can only be determined in a court of law. 

At the start of 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic first came to the attention of the U.S., police reported DUI arrests were down. However, as the state of Florida opened up and the holiday season came into full swing, DUI arrests started creeping back up. More people gathering together and the work season slowing down for some, means more time to spend enjoying the company of others often makes people drink a little more than they usually do. While consuming more alcohol than normal is not necessarily a bad thing, it can be if you choose to get behind the wheel of a car. 

Getting arrested for a DUI anytime of the year can put you in a sour mood. Not to mention the costs associated with an arrest. A first-time DUI in Florida can set you back $1,000 in fines alone, this does not cover other court costs, probation fees or attorney fees. You could also have your driver’s license suspended anywhere from 6 months up to a year. You could be looking at around $3,500 for a misdemeanor first-time DUI. 

If this is not your first DUI arrest, the costs only go up. A second DUI offense can result in fines of $2,000 and a third or subsequent DUI arrests will be an automatic felony and fines of around $5,000. A judge could also order that an ignition interlock device (IID) or breathalyzer be installed in your car. These machines only allow your car to start if you blow a .0%. They will also require you to breathe into the machine at random times while the vehicle is in motion. These devices are not cheap to have; installation can cost around $150 and the monthly lease and calibration can cost you around $100. Depending on your situation, you may have to have an IID in your car for six months or years. 

Regardless of who you are, it is very important to remember that drinking and driving or operating a car under the influence of drugs of any kind, including prescriptions, is always a bad idea. If you have any alcohol in your system when driving and make any type of error, you can be arrested and charged with DUI even if your blood alcohol concentration is under the legal limit of 0.08%. Continue reading

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Gainesville Florida Criminal Defense Attorney Robert Whittel now spends his days representing those accused of the highest criminal allegations in Florida. His criminal trial experience along with his relationships built as an Assistant State Attorney in Gainesville are an invaluable part of his criminal defense practice.

We spent a few minutes with Criminal Defense Attorney Robert Whittel talking about handling Rape and Kidnapping cases in Florida, and especially Gainesville. One of the highlights of our conversation is the specific pieces of data that he remembers from his thousands of past cases.

Because I handled so many cases and supervised other lawyers at the prosecutors office handling our serious Sex Crime cases in Gainesville like Kidnapping and Rape, when we have the opportunity to represent new clients at Whittel & Melton we immediately work to deconstruct what we can assume or think the State’s plan is, down to how they have built the file, how they will present it to the judge and to the jury – and then we work backwards from verdict all the way back to arrest and look for holes, inconsistencies and vulnerable areas ripe for challenge and possible exclusion. Like anything else, because we’ve walked this road before, we know where they are going even before journey begins. – Robert Whittel, Gainesville Criminal Defense Attorney and Trial Lawyer.

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