On Tuesday May 27, Florida Broward Circuit Judge Lynn Rosenthal was arrested for DUI after her vehicle collided with a parked sheriff’s patrol car in a parking lot behind the courthouse, according to news reports at CBS Miami. She was arrested shortly after 8 a.m.
Ted McClode who witnessed Rosenthal trying to walk from her vehicle said that she “had a hard time doing it.” A breathalyzer test was administered, however it registered .000 for alcohol. Rosenthal claimed that the reason for her behavior was that she had taken Ambien (a sleep aid) the night before, but she did refuse to give urine or blood to be tested. According to investigators, Rosenthal failed heel to toe step field sobriety tests and could not maintain her balance.
Two deputies witnessed the collision in which Rosenthal’s black SUV struck the parked sheriff’s patrol car near the entrance to a parking garage. One of the deputies claimed that he saw her strike the patrol car along with a closed gate at the parking lot. When asked if she was injured, the judge replied that she was not hurt and was not injured in the “other” crash she had been in earlier in the morning in which she alleged that a truck attempted to run her off the road. Upon producing her cell phone to show a video of the incident, Detective Michael Wiley said that Rosenthal was drifting across lanes on I-595 and eventually went to the breakdown lane before striking a concrete barrier wall. He claims there was no truck or other vehicle operating in a manner that influenced the judge’s path of travel.
Rosenthal was charged with DUI with property damage and DUI first-offense. She is the third Broward judge arrested for driving under the influence over the past six months according to news reports.
Michigan drunken driving attorneys know that anyone can be arrested for DUI. As indicated in this story, judges are human just like the rest of us. Mistakes are made, and although it appears that Judge Rosenthal was impaired after taking Ambien rather than due to alcohol, her ability to operate her vehicle safely was affected. Most people associate DUI charges with alcohol, and while this is usually the case, individuals may be charged with driving under the influence when there are other substances such as illegal or prescription drugs in their systems.
Regardless, the criminal penalties for those convicted of DUI are serious. Depending on factors including whether it is a first or subsequent offense, penalties may include steep fines, jail time, driver’s license suspension, community service, or even successful completion of an alcohol program.
If you have been arrested or charged with OWI or any drunken driving offense, it is critical that you work with an experienced Michigan DUI defense lawyer in order to obtain positive results and avoid damaging consequences.