Tiger Woods got arrested for DUI this week. According to his statement, he had no alcohol in his system but had taken various prescription drugs.
Tiger is probably going to hire a very high-end criminal defense attorney. He is going to spend a lot of money for that lawyer. A lot of money will likely be over $100,000. He will spend this money because he can afford it and because the people with whom he associates will tell him that is what he needs to do.
And I expect his case will eventually result in a guilty plea to the charge of reckless driving. He will likely be placed on probation for a year and have various fines and conditions he will have to complete.
When this happens, the public and the press will talk about injustice and how he only got such a great deal because he had the money to hire the best lawyer. But that is not true.
In Palm Beach County, where Tiger was arrested, the standard plea offer for a first time DUI offender where there was no accident, no one was injured, and there were no children in the car, is probation on a plea to reckless driving. Tiger will probably get the same deal with his very high-end lawyer that he would if he had a public defender.
It is certainly possible his lawyer will find some problem with the state’s case and file a motion that ultimately gets his case dismissed. Alternatively, perhaps Tiger plans to go to trial, and his lawyer will argue that he was involuntarily intoxicated. His case may very well be winnable. However, one has to wonder whether it is worth spending all of that money when he could probably get the same result by paying between 3 and 10 thousand dollars on an experienced, board certified, local criminal defense attorney who is not an attorney for the stars. I guess we will never know.