Did You Break the Law on Spring Break?
Spring break is here. After one of the coldest winters on record, thousands of people are heading south to Palm Beach County next week for some much-needed R & R. That means sun, surf, beach, golf, tennis, parties and nightclubs. It can also mean flashing lights, handcuffs, jail and bail – if you get arrested. Have you ever heard of the old saying, “Come to Florida on vacation and leave on probation?” Unfortunately, it is true for many out-of-staters.
The most common crimes during spring break in Palm Beach County are: DUI, drunk & disorderly conduct, drug possession, shoplifting, theft, assault, weapons offenses and solicitation of prostitution.
If you are charged with a misdemeanor DUI, you will go to the Palm Beach County Jail for the night and be required to post a $500 bond the next day. You will be given an arraignment date but if you have already returned home by then, you can be sure this charge will follow you back home.
If you don’t appear for your court date, your license may be suspended. The State of Florida’s Bureau of Administrative Review will assign you a Florida driver’s license number and transmit the suspension back to your home state. Your home state may then suspend your license.
Your best defense is to hire an experienced Palm Beach attorney to represent you. The attorney can save you the expense and inconvenience of returning to Florida for a court appearance by entering a plea in absentia. If you are arrested for a felony charge, you may be required to return to Florida, but a good criminal defense attorney may be able to plea down a felony charge to a misdemeanor.
Your vacation doesn’t have to be ruined just because you get arrested. Don’t take any chances. Bring your sun block. Bring your golf clubs. Bring a Palm Beach County attorney’s phone number, too.