In Arizona, not all drunk driving charges are the same. Take the case of former Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Michael Floyd. He was arrested in December for DUI after he fell asleep behind the wheel of his car. It wasn’t his first DUI charge. Back in 2011, while still a student at Notre Dame, Floyd was suspended by the football team after an on-campus DUI incident in which, according to school officials, his blood alcohol content (BAC) was more than twice the legal limit. Prior to that, he had received citations on two separate occasions, going back to 2009, for underage consumption of alcohol.

In any event, the December arrest had immediate consequences. He was placed on waivers by the Cardinals and was then claimed by the New England Patriots. He then pleaded guilty to DUI. He was scratched by the Patriots in the playoffs and Super Bowl. And unless he is signed by the Patriots this month, he’ll become a free agent.

Super Extreme DUI

The charge in Floyd’s case was not simply driving under the influence. Under Arizona law (A.R.S. 28-1382), there is a separate offense specifically applicable to those convicted of DUI with a high BAC. What it says is that if your blood content is 0.15 or more (but less than 0.20), you are guilty of driving under the “extreme influence” of intoxicating liquor. The law provides for enhanced penalties in such a case. And if your BAC is 0.20 or higher – referred to as “super extreme DUI” – the penalties are even more severe.

Floyd’s DUI in Arizona included an allegation that his BAC was 0.217. And after he pleaded guilty last month, he faced some significant penalties, including mandatory jail time. Here’s the sentence that was handed down:

  • Jail Time. Floyd was sentenced to 120 days of incarceraton, but only 24 days were to be served in a Maricopa County facility.
  • Home Detention. He is to spend 96 days in home detention.
  • Community Service. Thirty hours.
  • Fines. Over $5,000.

As we said at the outset, not all DUI’s are the same.

Law Offices of David A. Black
40 North Central Avenue #1850
Phoenix, AZ 85004
(480) 280-8028


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