This is part two of a two part series on Alachua County’s new pilot DUI deferred prosecution program. This artilce will describe the criteria for the program and its success so far. Part one explained the pilot program.
The criteria for consideration of acceptance into the program are stringent:
- No significant negative prior history of sort (either criminal or such as an academic suspension for a conduct violation);
- Underlying DUI cannot be the result of a multiple car accident, even if no injuries sustained;
- Breath or blood alcohol content cannot be much above the state legal limit of .08;
- General compliance and civility to the police officer throughout the DUI process, including the arrest;
- Exceptional hardship.
The purpose for implementing this program is to avoid instances in which the penalty for DUI is disproportionately punitive to the nature of the offense when considered as a whole. A DUI conviction or plea can cause repercussions to the defendant that resonate far beyond the standard criminal and driving sanctions, such as employment termination (including loss of benefits), loss of a professional license, or academic suspension or expulsion. It is these “hardship cases” for which the pilot program is targeted.
Mr. Cervone takes an active role in each hardship case from start to finish-from selecting the approximately 25-30 annual hardship candidates, , to monitoring the candidates during their 18 month probationary period.
The results of the first class strongly suggests that Mr. Cervone’s pilot program is succeeding, perhaps even more so than expected. So far, 13 from the inaugural class of 25 have reached the end of the eighteen-month deferral period. Of those thirteen candidates, only one did not successfully complete the program; that particular candidate was arrested during his/her deferral period for driving with a suspended license.
For more information:
Deferred Prosecution pilot, not widely publicized
They have also recently written the DUI Guide Book for Alachua County, Ways to Possibly Avoid A DUI Charge or Conviction. You can request your free copy today. This book, written by these experienced DUI defense criminal trial lawyers, gives insight into what a DUI charge is, what it takes to be over the legal limit, ways the State can prove the charge, and possible legal defenses.
If you would like to speak with an attorney about your case, pick up the phone and call Meldon Law today at (352) 373-8000