It is impossible to overstate the importance of tourism to the state of Florida. Every year, thousands upon thousands of people come to the state on vacation. Some of them visit theme parks. Some of them take in sporting events. Some of them head to the beaches.
And some of them get arrested.
Here is just one example of how tourists can get crosswise of the law. In 2020, the Okaloosa County Sherriff’s Office made 50 arrests related to Spring Break festivities in a single weekend.
Now, consider this: What would you do if you were one of the people arrested from out of state?
The smartest thing you can do is to call a lawyer immediately.
Reasons Tourists Are Arrested in Florida
A good portion of the tourists arrested in Florida are charged with driving under the influence or illicit drug use. And it is probably safe to say that substance use—whether it involves drugs or alcohol—often plays a role in some of the violent and sex-related crimes that some visitors to Florida find themselves arrested for.
Of course, any arrest is serious—and you can’t just pack up your vacation gear and return home in the hope that the charges won’t follow you out of Florida. Instead, you need to get representation right way—and that representation should be a Florida attorney, not a lawyer from your home state.
The Right Legal Representation Matters After a Florida Arrest
If you are arrested in Florida, you need a lawyer who understands Florida law and who will work diligently to defend you. In many cases, your lawyer may be able to get the charges against you reduced or dropped entirely.
It is important to remember that you are not required to talk to the police without an attorney present. In fact, it is almost always best to have a lawyer on hand to protect your interests before having any conversation with law enforcement. Again, you need a Florida attorney with the experience necessary to protect your rights.
Contact an Okaloosa County Criminal Defense Attorney
If you or a loved one have been arrested while on vacation in Florida, call Flaherty & Merrifield today at (850) 243-6097 for a free consultation.