Former Miami Dolphin Arrested for Second DUI After Causing Minor Accident

February 16, 2011 by David S. Seltzer

A DUI for a local celebrity caught my eye as a south Florida drunk driving criminal defense attorney. As the Miami Herald reported Feb. 14, former Dolphins player Bob Kuechenberg, 63, was arrested Saturday for allegedly causing an accident while under the influence of alcohol. Kuechenberg, of Fort Lauderdale, is accused of swerving into another driver’s car on Interstate 95, causing a sideswipe crash with property damage but no injuries. Responding troopers measured Kuechenberg’s blood-alcohol content at 0.127 and 0.122, both well above the 0.08 legal limit. He is charged with a second-offense DUI, DUI with property damage and improper passing. His previous DUI conviction came from a no-contest plea in 1994. In 1993, Kuechenberg pleaded guilty to reckless driving after being charged with DUI. Neither incident led to injuries.

Kuechenberg, known as “Kooch,” was a lineman for the Dolphins who started four Super Bowls and was part of two championship teams. The crash leading to his arrest happened at about 9:30 p.m. on Feb. 12. According to the Herald, Kuechenberg was just south of Commercial Boulevard on I-95 when he swerved into another lane and hit the right side of a car driven by Jose Median. Kuechenberg did not stop to acknowledge the accident, so Median followed him and flashed his lights to get him to pull over. Kuechenberg’s Volvo apparently had major damage to its front left side. Police responding noticed that Kuechenberg had a red face and watery, bloodshot eyes, smelled of alcohol and slurred his speech. He agreed to perform field sobriety tests but couldn’t keep his balance. He was arrested and eventually freed on bail the next night.

As a Miami-Dade DUI criminal defense lawyer, I hope Kuechenberg has an attorney. Everyone charged with DUI should have legal help, but it’s especially important for celebrities, because public interest unfortunately ensures that their cases will be watched in the media. That’s bad news when it puts pressure on prosecutors to prove that they’re not going easy on the famous person, because they often take it too far the other way. The standard penalties for a second drunk driving conviction are already very serious; Kuechenberg is facing a license suspension of six months to a year, probation for the same time range, possible jail time, an ignition interlock device, impoundment of his car and DUI school. Prosecutors interested in “making an example” of him might push for the upper range of penalties – but that’s not usual in a case where the prior DUI was 17 years ago. As a Fort Lauderdale intoxicated driving criminal defense attorney, I hope Kuechenberg has an experienced advocate to remind the court of this, if necessary.

Even if you’re not a former football player, you should always talk to an attorney before pleading guilty to a drunk driving charge. Call Seltzer Law, P.A. for a free, confidential case evaluation. To set up a meeting or tell us your story, call us 24 hours a day and seven days a week at 1-888-THE-DEFENSE (1-888-843-3333) or send us a message online.