UNLAWFUL POLICE DETENTION AND ARRESTS IN ORLANDO
At the firm of Ali & Blankner, our attorneys are highly experienced in litigating motions to suppress. Aside from unlawful police stops being fought at suppression hearings, there are also challenges to the detention and arrest that occur during an encounter with police.
Once stopped, police are trained to look for specific clues/cues to determine whether the individual is impaired. Examples of certain clues police look for include when the driver is inside of the vehicle, and then once the vehicle exit occurs –
Before exiting vehicle:
- Odor of alcohol either inside the car or from the driver’s breath
- Bloodshot and/or watery/glassy eyes
- Difficulty with motor vehicle controls
- Fumbling with driver’s license or registration
- Unable to locate driver’s license or registration
- Repeating questions or comments
- Slurred speech
- Slow to respond to officers
- Providing incorrect information or changing answers
After exiting vehicle:
- Using the car door for balance during exit
- Swaying, unsteady, or balance problems
- Leaning on vehicle or other object while standing
- Stumbling or tripping while walking
Once the requisite indicators are discovered or notated by police, generally the next step the officer takes it to request the driver to perform field sobriety exercises to “either confirm or dispel suspicion of impairment.” While field sobriety exercises generally cannot be forced, any refusal can be used against you in court as long as the officer provides you with adverse consequences of your refusal.
Whether or not field sobriety exercises are completed, the officer must develop probable cause to arrest the driver. The officer will commonly develop this probable cause based on the totality of circumstances. Whether or not he has actually seen or observed those indicators properly will depend on how well your lawyer understands DUI investigations and how to properly cross examine a testifying officer.
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In a basic DUI stop and subsequent investigation, the officer must observe all elements of the crime (Actual physical control of vehicle and impairment) in order to conduct a lawful arrest. If the officer first witnesses the individual outside or his/her vehicle or does not make all of the proper observations of impairment, it is possible to have a large amount of the evidence against you thrown out.
Other common defenses that may lead to evidence being thrown out at suppression hearings are that the officer lacked a reasonable suspicion to detain the driver due to he/she not witnessing proper amount of clues to conduct a DUI investigation. These same defenses can be extended to challenging the arrest.
The attorneys at Ali & Blankner have litigated hundreds to even thousands of motions to suppress with a very high rate of success. This success has resulted in DUIs being dismissed, reduced to careless driving civil citations, and/or reckless driving reductions.
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