Jacksonville’s citizens like to have fun, but like most, when alcohol is involved, the risks of harm are increased considerably. Unfortunately, when intoxicated people get behind the wheel of a car, someone else may suffer a life-changing injury. However, all is not lost for the person responsible for the crime. One in a situation like should obtain an experienced attorney to fight for one’s case and ensure one’s rights and defenses are known and protected.
According to The St. Augustine Record, Anastasia Mosquito Control District Commissioner Janice Marie Bequette of St. Augustine has been arrested and charged with a misdemeanor DUI. Very little information has been released about her actual arrest. The Florida Highway Patrol booked Bequette at the St. John’s County Jail at 12:45am. Bequette has released a statement at this time.
Jacksonville DUI cases normally involve a person who has had either a little bit too much to drink, someone calling the police, reporting a license plate number of an erratic driver, or someone crashing. However, as simple as the cause may be, the consequences of the crime can be tremendous such as:
- License suspension/revocation
- DUI school enrollment
- Up to 6 months in jail
- Vehicle tow and impoundment
- Ignition interlock installation and monthly access fees
- Expensive court fines and fees
Many times, evidence that seems to prove guilt for a DUI charge merely proves that an accident happened, not that the driver was intoxicated or even drove the car. In this case, little has been released about Bequette’s reported DUI. However, what is said is that Bequette has been released around the same time, quite possibly on her own recognizance. This means that the Judge feels that Bequette will attend all court proceedings willingly and will not have to post bond. If this is the case, her showing of cooperation may help her defense of character in front of the Judge.
A problem that Bequette may face is that Bequette is the Anastasia Mosquito Control District Commissioner. The legal system and public opinion feel that our public officials should be held to a higher standard. This higher standard thought may be the force that complicates her defense and possible punishment. However, an experienced attorney would be able to plea to a Judge that Bequette is merely a normal woman who made a mistake that she will learn from and change accordingly.
For many, the arrest was valid and one’s guilt is obvious. Fortunately, a simple showing of remorse, a recognition of one’s actions and the consequences of those actions, or attempting to compensate those wronged and change may shift the odds in one’s favor for obtaining a reasonable probation sentence rather than time in jail.
Nobody plans to get a DUI. Most people are just trying to get home. The best advice any lawyer can give is to not drive after you have consumed any alcohol. Find another way to get home or stay off the roads. One’s best advice is to never drive when one has consumed alcohol.
The only logical choice in this situation is to fight. One needs a knowledgeable and experienced Jacksonville DUI defense attorney to fight the case and ensure one’s rights are protected. Do not allow a DUI charge to ruin a bright future, away from the troubles of the legal system.