Can St Petersburg Seize Vehicles in DUI Cases? Video Below
One Florida town will join a few others in allowing police to seize the vehicle of a driving under the influence suspect and sell it back to him/her for around $500.00.
The city legal team has stated, “There does not appear to be any legal impediment to adding driving under the influence as a basis for vehicle seizure and impoundment with a companion administrative fine. . . .” The language used by the St. Petersburg City Attorney is, “vehicle seizure and impoundment with a companion administrative fine. “
Other Florida cities have ordinances which include driving under the influence as a basis for seizing the vehicle in traffic cases. A statewide search of these municipalities lists these cities:
Dunnellon, FL – Provides a catchall. Ordinance reads: The vehicle was used, intended or attempted to be used, to facilitate the violation of any criminal statute and the operator of the vehicle has been taken into custody by the police department and such motor vehicle would thereby be left unattended. Additional language which authorizes vehicle impoundment if the police officer has probable cause to believe that the operator of the vehicle or other person in charge of the vehicle is incapacitated to such an extent as to be unable to provide for its custody, control, or removal.
Wildwood, FL – Provides a catchall. Ordinance reads: Is subject to being detained for any other reason if the police chief elects to proceed on same under the provisions hereof.
Biscayne Park, FL
Mangonia Park, FL
Port Richey, FL
DUI Vehicle Seizure Video
City of St. Petersburg Proposed Vehicle Seizure Ordinance
“Proposed amendments: Adding driving under the influence to the section will provide officers an additional tool to promote public safety and penalize dangerous driving choices in the City. There does not appear to be any legal impediment to adding driving under the influence as a basis for vehicle seizure and impoundment with a companion administrative fine pursuant to section 20-122. If the proposed change is approved, officers will be educated regarding this additional public safety tool. “
“The Department respectfully requests the following three amendments to City Code Section 20-122: (i) amend section (b) to include driving under the influence as a basis for an officer to seize and impound a vehicle; (ii) amend section (e)(2) regarding the scheduling of the optional preliminary hearing from two business days to five business days; (iii) amend section (f)(1) regarding the scheduling of the optional final hearing from two business days to five business days. “