Brooksville, Florida man, Timothy Carr, was issued a DUI for driving through a Brooksville Walmart on a motorized shopping cart earlier this month. It is reported that Mr. Carr was quite intoxicated while cruising through the store drinking alcohol that he had plucked from the shelf while inside and also knocked several additional items from their shelves. When confronted by police, Mr. Carr told them that he had no money to pay for any of the items he was drinking and carrying in his cart. Police learned during questioning of Mr. Carr that he is homeless and has two prior arrests or convictions (the report was unclear) for theft. Based on police observations and their impression of his criminal history they have recommended that he be formally charged with disorderly intoxication, DUI and felony theft.
Unlike some other states, a person can receive a DUI in Florida so long as they are driving or in actual physical control of a “vehicle” as defined in Florida Statute 316.003(75). The motorized shopping cart driven by Mr. Carr fits the definition of vehicle as it is a “device in or upon by which a person or property may be transported or drawn upon a highway, except for devices travelling on stationary rails or tracks.” In other words, because a motorized shopping cart could be driven on a highway, Mr. Carr could be charged with a DUI. Of course conviction could be another story as field sobriety tests would likely need to be conducted and show impairment along with a chemical test or refusal of that test. If no other signs of impairment are present, a Tampa DUI lawyer could argue that Mr. Carr is simply not of sound mind or suffers from collateral medical issues, thereby preventing a shopping experience without incident. Would it work? Who knows. Tampa DUI charges, like other charges, are fact driven and unique. The short answer… It depends.
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