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Trial of Miami Beach Police Officer Charged With DUI Begins

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A former Miami Beach police officer is on trial, accused of driving an all terrain vehicle (ATV) on the beach while in uniform and allegedly under the influence of alcohol.

The former Miami Beach officer is accused of drinking at a Miami Beach bar while in uniform. After consuming alcohol, the officer is accused of taking a female patron from the bar on a ride on a Miami Beach ATV. While riding along the sand, the officer struck a man and woman walking along the beach.

The former officer is charged with two counts of reckless driving causing serious bodily injury, both third-degree felonies. The former officer is also charged with two counts of DUI causing serious bodily injury, also third-degree felonies.

If convicted of all charges, the officer faces a maximum of 20 years in prison.

The victims were hospitalized for several days after the crash.

The officer was fired by the Miami Beach Police Department shortly after.

Jury selection has begun and is expected to taken several days.

Eric Matheny is a criminal defense attorney serving Miami-Dade and Broward.