DRIVING CHARGES

Crimes involving a motor vehicle

When you get behind the wheel you never think you are going to get arrested. However, driving related crimes are among the most common criminal charges in Florida. People often underestimate the seriousness of a criminal driving charge, but it can not only result in you losing your drivers licences, but also your freedom. Don't make the mistake of going to court alone, contact the Ford Law Office at 407-514-2772, for a free consultation. We can help you with your case and to get your license cleared up.

 

DRIVING WHILE LICENSE SUSPENDED

§ 322.34(2), Fla. Stat.- Suspended, revoked or canceled

To prove the crime of Driving While your License or Driving Privilege was Suspended, Revoked, or Canceled, the State must prove the following three elements beyond a reasonable doubt:


1. You drove a motor vehicle upon a highway in this state.

2. At that time, your license, driving privilege was suspended, revoked, canceled.

3. At that time, you knew that driving privilege was suspended, revoked or canceled.

  

Proof that there exists an entry in the records of the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles showing that notice of the suspension, revocation, or cancellation was given by personal delivery or was deposited in United States mail, first class, postage prepaid, addressed to your last known mailing address furnished to the department, is proof that such notice was sent.


If the jury finds that you have been previously cited for driving while license suspended, revoked or canceled and your license had not been reinstated, the jury may conclude that you knew of the suspension, revocation, or cancellation.


If you admitted to knowing of the suspension, revocation, or cancellation, or you received a traffic citation, judgment, or order, rendered by a court, or an adjudicatory body, which contained a provision notifying you of a the suspension, revocation, or cancellation, a jury may conclude that you had knowledge.

 

DEFINITIONS

“Drive” means to operate [or be in actual physical control of] a motor vehicle in any place open to the general public for purposes of vehicular traffic.

“Motor vehicle” means any vehicle which is self-propelled, including a “moped,” but not any vehicle moved solely by human power, motorized wheelchair or motorized bicycle.

“Highway” means the entire width between the boundary lines of every way or place if any part thereof is open to the use of the public for purposes of vehicular traffic. A privately owned parking lot, that is open to public use by vehicles, is considered to be a highway.

“Notice” means personal delivery or deposit in the United States mail, first class, postage prepaid, addressed to the defendant at [his] [her] last known address furnished to the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.  Mailing by the department shall constitute notification.

“Suspended” means the privilege to drive a motor vehicle has been temporarily withdrawn.

“Revoked” means the privilege to drive a motor vehicle has been terminated.

“Canceled” means that a license has been declared void and terminated.

“Actual physical control” of a motor vehicle means you must be physically in the motor vehicle and have the capability to operate the motor vehicle, regardless of whether you are actually operating the motor vehicle at the time.

 

LEAVING THE SCENE OF A CRASH

§ 316.063(1), Fla. Stat.

To prove the crime of Leaving the Scene of a Crash Involving Damage to an Unattended Vehicle or Unattended Property, the State must prove the following four elements beyond a reasonable doubt:


1.         You were the driver of a vehicle involved in a crash or collision.

2.         The crash or collision resulted in damage to another vehicle or other property.

3.         The vehicle or other property was not driven or attended by any person.

4.         You failed to immediately stop at the scene of the crash or collision and then and there either

  • a.         locate and notify the operator or owner of the vehicle or other property of your name and address and the registration number of the vehicle you were driving, or


  • b.         attach securely in a conspicuous place in or on the vehicle or other property a written notice giving your name and address and the registration number of the vehicle you were driving, and, without unnecessary delay, notify the nearest office of a duly authorized police authority.


A vehicle is “involved in a crash” if it collides with another vehicle, person, or object.


“Vehicle” means every device, in, upon, or by which any person or property is or may be transported or drawn upon a highway, excepting devices used exclusively upon stationary rails or tracks.

 

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