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Fort Myers Criminal Law Blog

How to talk to your teenager about interacting with police

It is no secret that raising a teenager can be challenging and exhausting. Many teens feel a strong urge to explore and rebel, which can get them in trouble with the law. If this happens to your child, you are not alone. In 2017, there were approximately 809,700 juvenile arrests in the United States.

As a parent, few things are more dreadful than getting a call from the police station informing you that your child is in jail or police custody. You can teach your child a few tips for how to handle this situation so you are both ready if it ever happens. Here are some lessons to instill in your teen. 

What to know about first-time drunk driving charges

No one in Florida intends to go out and be arrested for driving under the influence. Many times, drivers are not sure how much alcohol they can consume and still be able to drive lawfully. Most know what the legal blood alcohol limit is, but it is not unusual for drivers to get behind the wheel because they feel fine and think they are below the limit. Regardless, being pulled over and charged with drunk driving for the first time can leave a driver with many questions.

The best thing to do would be to get criminal defense counsel to protect one's legal rights. First-time DUIs are often misdemeanors, but legal counsel is still a valuable asset. An experienced DUI defense attorney who is present during questioning and interviews with the police can help a client avoid incriminating statements. The lawyer can also scrutinize the methods used by law enforcement with a view toward presenting a strong defense in court.

Driver faces drug charges after alleged battery on police officer

A 41-year-old Florida woman was taken to Charlotte County Jail after an incident on a recent Thursday morning. Court documents indicate that law enforcement pulled the driver over for various traffic violations, and ultimately filed drug charges. When she pulled over, she allegedly left the engine running, but a male passenger turned it off. The officer reports that the driver argued and when he realized she was about to pull off, he reached for the door to stop her.

The driver is accused of dragging the officer along for some distance, and when he managed to free himself, a high-speed chase ensued. This continued until the driver found herself in a dead end street, where she drove up a driveway and smashed into a pole. Law enforcement caught up and proceeded to arrest her.

5 common spring break crimes

Spring break is a fun time to get away from lectures, assignments and exams. Some Florida students use this welcome downtime to vacation and party. In fact, some of the most popular spots for spring breakers are in Florida, including Miami Beach, Panama City Beach and Key West.

But spring break is not always fun and games. These destinations often see an uptick in criminal activity during this time. Here is an analysis of some of the most common spring break crimes. 

3 ways insurance companies try to cheat you

Thanks to upbeat, charming commercials, you may believe insurance companies are your friends. After all, if they fail to keep customers happy, then they will fail to keep customers at all. It should be in their best interest to help you, right?

Wrong. It is in their best interest to help their profits, even at your expense. You may experience one of these ways in which your insurance provider tries to cheat you after you get into a car accident.

Insurance fraud charges in the aftermath of 2017 hurricanes

Following the devastation of the 2017 hurricanes Maria and Irma, the owner of a Florida construction company worked as a subcontractor hired by a federal relief program to repair damaged homes. Following an investigation, the woman is now facing federal insurance fraud charges for allegedly submitting fraudulent invoices to the Federal Emergency Management Agency. At her indictment, it was alleged that the phony invoices totaled $840,000.

The indictment asserts that some of the fraudulent invoices included employees who were not involved in the repair work. Furthermore, it is alleged that workers had to sign blank time sheets, which were then filled out by other employees who were instructed to insert false details on the forms. It is alleged that this woman and three other co-defendants committed the fraud from Aug. through Oct. 2018.

Florida driver charged with DUI and child endangerment

Exposing children to the risks of being in a vehicle with an impaired driver could have severe consequences. Florida courts have no tolerance for adults who are arrested for endangering the lives of children. One such driver will likely be exploring his defense options after a recent arrest on charges that include DUI, child neglect, resisting arrest and some controlled substance-related charges.

According to a police report, a call was received from a person who reported seeing a driver who appeared impaired, passed out or sleeping at the wheel of a car that also had two minor occupants. The caller managed to wake the sleeping driver, who promptly drove off at a high level of speed, alleged to have exceeded 100 mph. Further reports indicate that law enforcement caught up with the 28-year-old driver, who allegedly ignored their attempts to pull him over.

Wire fraud charges filed against defamed ultramarathon runner

A 46-year-old man who reportedly moved from another state to Florida last year was recently arrested. His arrest arose from an investigation into alleged white-collar crimes committed from 2014 through 2018. The man was charged with multiple felonies, including theft and wire fraud.

Investigators allege the man committed multiple white-collar crimes during his employment as the general manager of a business in another state. Reportedly, his position authorized him to purchase services and goods for the company. He was also responsible for maintaining customer relations, and traveled for business frequently. Allegedly, it was during this time that the defendant submitted false expense reports for reimbursement, and court documents show he even resubmitted already paid expenses after whiting out and changing details and dates.

DUI suspect dances through the field sobriety test

A Florida man was in the proverbial wrong place at the wrong time when he was recently arrested. Deputies say they came across a 33-year-old man who was sleeping in his pickup truck in Holiday. They allege they noticed the brake lights were on and found that the engine was running and the driver was asleep behind the wheel, but he had his foot on the brake. According to a police report, the DUI suspect thought he was in Clearwater, and he was under the impression that it was about 10 p.m. while the police report indicates that it was 2 a.m.

Deputies claim that the driver failed to put the vehicle in park as he got out on their orders to exit. A deputy then jumped in to stop the truck from rolling forward. Furthermore, they have body camera footage that apparently shows the driver first stumbling and then attempting to dance his way through the walk-and-turn part of the field sobriety test. Arrest records indicate that the driver admitted starting to drinking alcohol at about 6 p.m. on the previous evening.

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