What to do if I recieved a citation for public drunkenness while driving my car?

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What to do if I recieved a citation for public drunkenness while driving my car?

The cop said he was giving me a break because I seemed like a nice person and was very cooperative. I now have a citation with no amount for the fine. Will I have to appear in court? Can they change this to a DUI or sentence me to jail time? I already plan on pleading guilty and paying the fine. I am guess this will also appear on my permanent record and probably have no way of fighting it right?

Asked on March 18, 2013 under Criminal Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You may or may not have a way of fighting the charge.  If the officer stopped you for an illegal reason, then the whole case against you could be thrown out.  Before you decide to accept or reject a plea offer, visit with a criminal defense attorney about your case.  If the stop is good and you were intoxicated, see if they can work a deal that will have the least impact on your record.  A PI instead of a DUI is already a good deal, but you may still be able to get a better deal.  If the stop is not good, then a criminal defense attorney can file a motion to object to the stop and get the case dismissed completely.  To contest the stop you will have to appear in court. 

The second part of your question is regarding charges.  If a prosecutor or supervisor to the officer reviews the case, they could make the decision to change the charge to DUI. 


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