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Is It DUI If You Sleep In A Parked Car When You Are Drunk?


There is no law against sleeping in your own car in a parking lot, and in this age, when everyone is overworked and sleep-deprived, and given how cars are virtually the only transportation option in Florida, most of us have done it on at least one occasion.  In some cases, though, the fact that you are asleep in a car might give police reason to suspect that you have been driving drunk.  Since the only thing that lowers your blood alcohol content (BAC) after a drinking session is the passage of time, it makes sense that sleeping until your BAC has decreased to a level where it is legal to drive is a safe bet.  Unfortunately, though, Florida’s laws about drunk driving are sufficiently vague, and police officers’ judgments are sufficiently subjective, that people have been charged with DUI when, instead of driving, they were sleeping in stationary vehicles.  If you are facing charges for DUI when you were arrested after sleeping in your car, you are in a stronger position than most to fight the charges than most defendants in DUI cases.  If you are facing charges for being drunk in public but not driving, contact a West Palm Beach disorderly intoxication lawyer.

You Can Go Sleep at Home Tonight If You Can Get Up and Walk Away

It might sound like just another Florida Man urban legend, but last month, Michael Fuller of the Village of Pine Ridge entered a guilty plea for DUI charges that stem from an incident where, not only was he not driving, but the vehicle he was not driving only partially qualifies as a motor vehicle.  At the time of his arrest, Fuller was asleep at the wheel of a golf cart.  He failed several field sobriety tests, and his blood alcohol content was more than twice the legal limit.  Was it DUI

Will you get charged with DUI if you sleep in your car?  It depends.  If you were sleeping in the backseat, you are unlikely to get charged with DUI; you are probably also safe if you were in the passenger seat.  The police have more room to argue that you were trying to drive drunk but you were so far gone that you fell asleep before you got around to shifting into drive if you were in the driver’s seat; their argument is even more convincing if the car’s ignition was on.

Contact a West Palm Beach Disorderly Intoxication Defense Lawyer Today

Attorney William Wallshein has more than 38 years of experience, including five years as a prosecutor in Palm Beach County.  Contact William Wallshein P.A. in West Palm Beach, Florida to discuss your case.



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