Flaherty & Merrifield defends locals, military members, and vacationers in Crestview who have been accused of Leaving the Scene of an Accident, Fleeing or Eluding Law Enforcement, DUI with Serious Bodily Injury, and DUI Manslaughter.
Usually, when you hear about a traffic case, you think of a speeding ticket, or a problem with your taillights or your tag. That is not what this page is about. This page discusses the situations where a traffic incident results in serious felony charges and a potential prison sentence.
My name is Tim Flaherty. I’ve been a Crestview felony traffic offense attorney since 2001. My partner’s name is Brandy Merrifield. Whether you are under investigation, or you have already been charged with Leaving the Scene of an Accident, Fleeing from the police, DUI Manslaughter, or DUI with Serious Injury, we can help you. Call Flaherty & Merrifield today at (850) 398-8098 for a free consultation.
Felony Traffic Offenses in Crestview
If you are convicted of any of the following felony traffic offenses, you are facing a possible jail or prison sentence along with a felony conviction that will stay on your record forever:
Hit and Run/Leaving the Scene of an Accident
When someone is in an accident involving injuries, there is a legal obligation to stay on scene, exchange information, and give aid to anyone who is hurt. If the police allege that you failed to do any of those things, you will likely be charged with Leaving the Scene of an Accident. The possible penalty for this charge ranges from 5 years in prison (Leaving the Scene of an Accident with Injury) up to 30 years in prison (Leaving the Scene of an Accident with Death).
The State is required to prove that you willfully failed to remain at the scene. One common defense is to argue that you didn’t know the accident had resulted in an injury or death.
For more information about Hit and Run charges in Crestview, click here.
Fleeing or Attempting to Elude a Law Enforcement Officer
The police expect you to pull off to the side of the road as soon as it is safe once they turn their lights and siren on behind you. Whether you took the police on a “slow speed chase” by simply not pulling over, or ran from the police at a dangerously high rate of speed, you face the felony offense of Fleeing or Eluding Law Enforcement.
The possible penalty ranges from 5 years to 30 years in prison. If the fleeing results in death or serious injury to anyone, you also face a mandatory minimum sentence of 3 years in prison.
For more information about Fleeing or Eluding charges in Crestview, click here.
DUI with Serious Bodily Injury
The 2 key things to keep in mind with this charge are (1) the State is required to prove that the injuries are serious enough to qualify as serious bodily injury and (2) the State must prove that you caused the accident, or were at fault.
DUI with Serious Bodily Injury is a 3rd degree felony with a maximum sentence of 5 years in prison. However, under Florida sentencing guidelines, it “scores out” to a minimum sentence of 21 months in prison. If the State adds victim injury points, the minimum sentence increases to 51 months in prison.
For more information about DUI with Serious Bodily Injury charges in Crestview, click here.
If you were driving while intoxicated, or at a level where your normal faculties were impaired, and someone was killed in an accident that you caused, you face the charge of DUI Manslaughter.
DUI Manslaughter is punishable by 15 years in prison per victim. If there is an allegation that you ran from the scene or you didn’t give aid at the scene, the penalty is doubled to 30 years in prison.
For more information about DUI Manslaughter in Crestview, click here.
We don’t judge. It is our job to help you, not make you feel worse.
Most of the time, the people that get charged with a felony traffic offense have never been in trouble before. They never imagined that they would need the services of a criminal lawyer, and they definitely never thought they would be looking at going to prison.
If we have learned anything in our careers as a criminal defense attorneys, it’s that sometimes good people make mistakes. Sometimes people get falsely accused after being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
You do not have to go through this by yourself. We would be glad to stand by your side.
Whether you live in Crestview, or you were here on vacation, we can help you. If you are in the military, we understand that your career is at stake with a felony charge. We take our responsibility to our clients very seriously.
If you have been charged with Leaving the Scene of an Accident, Fleeing or Eluding Law Enforcement, DUI with Serious Bodily Injury, or DUI Manslaughter in Crestview, call Flaherty & Merrifield 24/7 at (850) 398-8098 and get the help you need.
To learn more about cases we handle in Crestview, click here.