Can My Pinellas County DUI Get Reduced to Reckless Driving if I Blew Over the Legal Limit?

If you were recently arrested for a DUI offense in St. Petersburg, Clearwater, or the surrounding areas of Pinellas County, you may be questioning whether it was a good idea to provide law enforcement with a breath sample.


In Florida, a prosecutor can attempt to prove a DUI offense in one of two ways. The first is by submitting evidence that you were driving or in actual physical control of a motor vehicle with a breath or blood result above .08. In cases where a subject has not supplied a breath or blood test, the prosecutor will seek to utilize “circumstantial evidence” to demonstrate that your normal faculties were impaired by alcohol while you were driving or in actual physical control of a motor vehicle. 


Thus, in cases where a subject has refused to comply with a breath test, they have deprived the prosecutor of one of two ways to prove his or her case. However, even if you provided a breath test that was above a .08, it is still possible to get your charge reduced to “Reckless Driving.”

How Can a Clearwater DUI Defense Attorney Help Get My DUI Reduced if I Blew Over the Legal Limit?

Just because you blew over the legal limit, that does not mean that you will be convicted of a DUI offense. Our top-rated Pinellas DUI defense lawyers can analyze the unique factors of your case to determine if a reduction to Reckless Driving is a reasonable possibility in your case. Here are some common ways that our highly ranked DUI defense attorneys can help secure a reduction to Reckless Driving even where our client has blown over the legal limit:

  • In some cases, our client may qualify for a diversion program that would result in a reduction to Reckless even if you provided a breath or blood result above .08;
  • In some cases, our office can use a mathematical formula called “Widmark’s Equation” to demonstrate that although our client was above the legal limit at the time the breath sample was collected, he would have been below the legal limit at the time of driving;
  • Our office regularly conducts an analysis of the records associated with the breath testing instruments used to test our client’s breath alcohol levels. If we find problems with the maintenance and calibration of the machine, we may be able to secure a reduction in the charge by demonstrating that the evidence is not scientifically reliable; 
  • We have found that some police officers will misstate the benefits of providing a breath sample or the consequences of refusing to submit to breath testing. In these cases, we can often use the “misinformation” to convince the prosecutor that a reduction to Reckless Driving is appropriate.

What are the Benefits of Getting my Pinellas DUI Reduced to Reckless Driving?

In Florida, if you are convicted of a DUI offense, even if it is a first offense, you are required to carry highly expensive FR-44 insurance for a period of three years. Getting your DUI reduced to Reckless Driving allows you to avoid this very expensive, collateral penalty associated with a DUI. However, there are some additional advantages as well. These include:

  • Avoiding the “stigma” of a DUI conviction;
  • Sidestepping the driver’s license suspension that would be imposed by the criminal court if convicted of a DUI; and
  • The financial penalties associated with Reckless Driving are less than those of a DUI.

Contact our Office for a Free Consultation Today

If you have been charged with a DUI in Pinellas County and provided a breath sample, you do not just want a lawyer that happens to handle DUIs, you want a trained DUI defense attorney. Our lawyers have specialized training in the inner workings of breath testing instruments. In fact, we own our own Intoxilyzer. If you are in need of a DUI defense attorney in Clearwater that you can trust, complete our contact request form or give us a call today at (727) 578-0303.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.

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