A driver entered an apartment complex on the wrong side of the road, almost causing an accident with a Gainesville Police Department officer who was exiting the complex. Subsequently, the driver hit a car in front of the complex while backing out. The driver was pulled over and the officer noticed the smell of alcohol. The driver admitted he was drunk and needed to go home, but said he was unaware that he had been driving the wrong way.
Responding officers obtained consent from the driver to perform field sobriety exercises. He displayed lack of smooth pursuit and sustained nystagmus at maximum deviation in both eyes during the HGN test. During the walk-and-turn exercise, he used his arms for balance and forgot what to do after performing the turn. Further, he put his foot down at least three times and exhibited leg tremors during the one-leg stand. He also missed touching his nose and pointed forward during the finger-to-nose test. During the Rhomberg balancing test, he estimated a 30-second time period at 26.7 seconds and exhibited eye and leg tremors.
The driver was arrested for DUI and provided two samples of .152g/210L and .149g/210L. (Date of Arrest: August 5, 2011) The State offered a plea bargain for DUI above .08g/210L but below .15g/210 and sought requirements such as probation, DUI school, and community service. However, attorneys at Meldon Law successfully pursued the driver’s admittance into the Deferred Prosecution program which resulted in the lesser charge of Reckless Driving with Alcohol.