What Are the Legal Defenses to a DUI Charge

According to the drug-free coalition Drugfree.org, at least 40 percent of the breathalyzer machines that were used in conjunction with DUI arrests were not working properly as of October 2011. This is a significant number of defective devices, considering the potential probative value that the results of these machines render. In addition to questioning the authenticity of breathalyzer results, there are several other ways that a suspect can defend against a DUI charge.

Attack the Initial Stop

Police cannot stop everyone on the roadway. They must follow specific guidelines that maintain potential suspects’ constitutional rights. A police officer must have a reasonable and articulable set of facts before he can legally stop a person whom he suspects of violating a traffic law or other type of legislation. Even if the driver is swerving, he is not violating the law unless he crosses into other lanes of traffic. A suspect can also argue that a police officer had a private vendetta against him, or he can argue that police corruption or misconduct was the reason for the initial stop. Even if the police officer did have reasonable suspicion to stop the suspect, he might have lacked probable cause to arrest him, which is a higher standard than the one required for police officers to stop a suspect in a motor vehicle. Additionally, if the suspect was in police custody, he is supposed to be read his Miranda rights. If he was not read these rights and he provided an incriminating statement to the police, his statement and any related evidence of his statement can be thrown out of court.

Attack the Test and Test Results

No field sobriety test is 100 percent effective. In fact, sober, healthy adults fail walking and standing tests 30 percent of the time. Other factors may affect a person’s ability to pass a field sobriety test, such as their weight, medical conditions, age or balance. Furthermore, many officers lack proper training in conducting these field sobriety tests. They may administer an inappropriate test that is not included as part of the police department’s handbook. Police officers are expected to administer the tests in a particular manner to increase the validity of the test results. If they fail to execute these tests properly, the results of the field sobriety test can be thrown out, and any evidence that was acquired due to the belief of the accuracy of this test can also be declared inadmissible by the judge.

Give an Alternative Explanation

Other factors may explain the results of driving behavior or test results. The driver may have been ill or tired. The driver may have consumed certain foods or drinks that give a false positive. Even nail polish can interfere with breath tests. A person who was involved in an accident may have begun drinking after the accident occurred to calm his nerves. A DUI lawyer is familiar with the various defenses for DUI charges and should be consulted to protect the freedom of the defendant.

Ohio DUI Penalties and Information

If you are caught operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol in Ohio, then you will be arrested and charged with an OVI, or Operating a Vehicle Intoxicated. When you are convicted of this charge, you will be required to serve jail time, pay fines and you will also lose your driver’s license for a period. Within this article, you will find all of the Ohio OVI penalties and fines, so you can truly understand what the cost is if you decide to drink and drive.

Ohio OVI First Offense Penalties:

If you are convicted of an OVI for the first time in Ohio, then you will be required to spend a minimum of three days in jail and a maximum of six months; however, you may be able to undergo a Driver Intervention Program for three days instead of jail time. If your BAC was 0.17% or higher then you will be required to spend at least six days in jail – there is no other option. Your driver’s license will also be suspended for a period of six months to three years. Once you can have your license reinstated, you will be required to pay a reinstatement fee of $450; however, this does not require the standard OVI fee of $250 to $1,000.

Ohio OVI Second Offense Penalties:

When you are convicted of an OVI within the state of Ohio, then you will be required to spend a minimum of 10 days in jail and be on house arrest for a period of 18 days to six months. If your BAC were 0.17% or higher upon arrest, you would be required to spend a minimum of 20 days in jail. The fine associated with this conviction ranges from $350 to $1,500. You will also have your driver’s license suspended for one to five years, and you will be required to pay a reinstatement fee of $450. Your vehicle will also be immobilized for a period of 90 days, and you will also be required to undergo a driver intervention program.

Ohio OVI Third Offense Penalties:

Being convicted of an OVI for the third time within the State of Ohio requires you to spend at least 30 days to one year in jail. The judge may also allow you to spend only 15 days in jail if you undergo house arrest for 55 days to one year. If your BAC was 0.17% or higher, then you will be required to spend at least 60 days in jail. The fine this conviction carries ranges from $350 to $1,500, and you can expect to have your license suspended for a period of one to 10 years. Your vehicle will also be immobilized for a period of 180 days. When you’re ready to have your license reinstated, you must pay a $450 reinstatement fee.

Ohio DUI Penalties: Choosing Ohio DUI Attorney for Ohio DUI Penalties

Ohio DUI Penalties and How To Choose an Ohio DUI Attorney
In Ohio, alcohol-related driving under the influence or being under the influence of drugs (known as OVI) and driving over the legal limit or a “BAC.” These are both alcohol-related offenses under Ohio DUI law. Ohio drunk driving arrest will bring two separate cases which are a court case and an Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles case. In the court case, DUI penalties Ohio are possible jail time, classes, fines, and other penalties. In the license bureau case the driving privileges are at stake for the offender.

Ohio DUI Attorney

There are many places to acquire an Ohio DUI attorney to help lessen your extreme DUI Ohio penalties. There are many available sources out there for a DUI attorney, but remember to try to find a qualified lawyer. You want to speak to more than one lawyer ultimately before making your final decision on choosing whom to represent you. Don’t be afraid to ask an Ohio attorney plenty of questions before making your decision. The best Ohio lawyers and the most qualified will welcome all your questions. Finding an Ohio DUI attorney with experience is the best thing to do in a tragic time such as this. These kind of crimes are very common in Ohio and all over the country, having a qualified lawyer to defend you will help the case go quicker and better than pleading guilty. Acquiring an Ohio DUI lawyer will save you some of your Ohio DUI penalties and save you from embarrassment.

Ohio DUI Penalties – Ohio Dui 1st Offense

The first DUI offense can result in an Administrative License Suspension (ALS) for exceeded the legal limit of blood alcohol concentration (BAC). License suspension for up to 90 days and can be suspended for up to a year for a test refusal. Then you are required to go to jail for 3 days or take 3-day driver classes. The court can suspend the license from 4 months to 3 years depending on case faces. The first offense of an Ohio DUI will end in $300 – $1,500 fine.

Ohio Dui Penalties – Ohio DUI 2nd Offense

The second offense in Ohio can result in a license suspension for up to a year. Refusal to administer a test will be a two-year license suspension for the suspect. Jail time for an Ohio DUI can consist of 10 consecutive days to 5 days in jail. Then there is a possibility of being on house arrest with an electrically monitored bracelet. The find for an Ohio DUI can range anywhere from$400 to $1500. Need to attend a driver’s intervention program when receiving DUI penalties in Ohio. The court can suspend the driver’s license for 1 year to 5 years depending on the charge.

Ohio DUI Penalties – Ohio DUI 3rd Offense

The third DUI offense in Ohio will result in a minimum license suspension for two years with the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles. A refusal to partake in the BAC test will result in a license suspension for up to 3 years. The Ohio penalties for DUI for the third offense can result in a 30 day to a 6-month jail sentence. Some people will get the choice between being on house arrest for about a year, or you can serve a jail term. Some counties in Ohio offer an alternative sentence for some DUI suspects. The fines for the third DUI offense can range from $500 to $2500. Your vehicle license plates will be impounded for nearly 180 days and a court license suspension that could last anywhere from 1-10 years.

Ohio DUI Penalties – 4th DUI Offense

There is an administrative license suspension for a minimum of 3 years for the fourth offense. The fourth offense Ohio DUI penalty will be considered a felony. Refusal to administer the blood alcohol test will result in license suspension for 5 years. Jail time can be 60 days to 1 year, and a mandatory drug and alcohol treatment classes must be attended. The drug and alcohol classes must be paid for by the offender. The court will most likely seize your motor vehicle for the fourth DUI offense in Ohio. The court will most likely suspend your driver’s license up to 3 years or even permanently revoke the driver’s license.

I’ve Been Arrested for Drunk Driving in San Diego, Now What?

Being arrested for a DUI can seem a little stressful, especially if this is a first-time offense. All you had was a couple of drinks and the next thing you know you’ve been pulled over. The cops are making you recite the alphabet backward, and they’re telling you to blow into a breathalyzer.

DUI laws vary from state to state, but in the state of California, driving with a blood-alcohol content of 0.08 percent is illegal. If this is your first time being arrested for drunk driving, there is the possibility that you’ll incur jail time, high fines and fees, license suspension, mandatory rehabilitation classes, or even all of the above. Two or more DUI arrests could result in more severe penalties including a necessary installation of an ignition interlock device.

What To Do First

Although it isn’t mandatory, it’s highly advisable to seek the help of a San Diego DUI lawyer who specializes in drunk driving cases. An experienced DUI lawyer is knowledgeable about all the procedures that need to be followed. You can save time by hiring a lawyer who will investigate all the details of your case. A lawyer will also be the one to schedule a DMV hearing within the 10-day deadline.

It’s important to note that in the state of California if you don’t schedule a hearing within 10 days after your arrest, your license will automatically be suspended.

What most people don’t know is that a drunk driving case requires research and investigation. Thorough study and investigation plus a critical examination of the police report are necessary. A lawyer can uncover mistakes and legal issues that have been overlooked by law enforcement.

Meeting With Your Lawyer

Many people make the mistake of hiring a DUI lawyer based on price, but it’s important to keep in mind that your driver’s license and future driving privileges are on the line. You want a lawyer who has your best interests at heart.

When you meet with your lawyer for the first time, be prepared to answer any questions. Tell your lawyer all the events that occurred before, during, and after your arrest. If you can recall what the arresting police officer(s) said to you and any of the sobriety tests that they conducted, it will help with the investigation. Is it possible that you said something to the arresting officers that could be used as evidence against you during the hearing? The more you remember what happened before, during, and after your arrest, the better. Having witnesses to testify will help the case even more.

The Consequences

If this is your first DUI offense, typically the sentence includes a jail sentence, one to two years of probation, an excellent, community service, and DUI classes. Don’t think that you can walk into court, plead guilty, pay a fine, and get it over with.

When you hire a San Diego DUI lawyer to help you with your case, there’s the possibility that you could get acquitted and found not guilty.

Is There a Reason to Hire a DUI Lawyer?

When stooped and charged with a DUI you might think that this is just a light charge that many different people are getting. Alternatively, you might think that it is useless to hire a DUI attorney because of the strong evidence against you. Such as a breath analyzer test or a blood test. However, it is important to consider the type of sway a lawyer can have in a courtroom. There are a lot of complicated laws that anyone who hasn’t spent a large majority of time studying law will make no sense to you. Sometimes these obscure laws can get you off the hook.

This might be your first experience with the legal system. If this is the case, then you probably have many unanswered questions about the way the legal systems work. A lawyer will help you sort through the complicated mess that is the legal system. DUI attorney will expedite your case and make the whole situation go through smother. Even though you might assume that you can defend yourself you knowledge of the law probably lacks enough to leave a few holes open in your case.

When the police stop you, you should refrain from answering any questions put forth by the officer. You are obligated to produce identification but other than that you don’t have to do anything. That includes a field sobriety test. Make sure to get a lawyer present before talking to the police. This is tricky as officers will sometimes use chit chat to sneak the information out of you. The actions that you take during the stop are a huge part of the case, so you want to make sure you do nothing to incriminate yourself.

With strong evidence faced against you in a trial, you might think that spending money on a lawyer is useless as it will be wasted funds in a case built around looming disaster. This is rarely true, however, because of a large amount of knowledge of the law that a lawyer has to obtain to practice, there are often many steps that they know how to take to reduce the sentencing of the case. It is possible that hiring a DUI attorney will pay for it with all the fees and charges you can miss out on. Even if the case doesn’t go to trial, you will still miss out on many fees and reduced penalties that you would have been held responsible for.

How to Prepare for a DUI Court Hearing

If you have been charged with a DUI (Driving Under the Influence), you will have the opportunity to present your defence in court. A court hearing will be scheduled for a later date, but you will need to attend arraignment first. Then you can prepare for your DUI court hearing, which could be several weeks (or even months) in the future. Either way, you have some work to do if you want to reduce your chances of going to jail.

First, you should know that a DUI can be charged as either a misdemeanour or a felony, depending on the circumstances of the crime and the state in which you live. The prosecutor will have discretion as to how to charge you at your arraignment, so be prepared for any eventuality. A felony carries a far stiffer sentence than a misdemeanour, but both can result in jail time.

At an arraignment, which is the first of your DUI court hearings, you will need to enter a plea. The judge will ask if you want to plead “guilty,” “not guilty” or no contest. If you plead “not guilty,” a court date will be set for your trial; if you plead “guilty” or “no contest,” date will be set for your sentencing. In most cases, you’ll want to plead “not guilty” so that you get your day in court.

Either way, however, you can mitigate your potential sentence by entering a drug and alcohol awareness program. If you think you might be an alcoholic, you might want to take it a step further by entering rehab. DUI charges are extremely serious crimes, but judges are often more lenient with defendants who are willing to take responsibility and prevent the same situation from happening again.

It is also important that you retain the services of an experienced DUI attorney. In fact, I wouldn’t hire anyone who doesn’t have a caseload that is at least 50% DUI, because these are the legal professionals with the most related experience. Ask about the attorney’s track record with DUI cases, and don’t be afraid to keep looking until you find one who seems competent. I have never handled a DUI case, so I would not be a good candidate.

Even if you have a lawyer, you will also want to review the case law regarding DUI offences. Learn about the common penalties in your state, and specifically in your county, and talk to others who have been charged with similar moving violations in the past. The more you know about the charges against you, the more likely you’ll be able to fight them.

In court, you will want to be sombre and respectful. Dress in clothes you would wear to work, and make sure to meet the judge’s and prosecutor’s eyes when you are addressed. Make sure to let everyone in your court hearing know that you are sorry for what you’ve done (if you’re pleading “guilty”) or that you didn’t commit the DUI offence (when pleading “not guilty.”)

How to Choose the Best Knoxville DUI Lawyer

When a person gets arrested on a driving under the influence charge in Tennessee they undoubtedly have many thoughts running through their mind including:

• How much is this going to cost me?
• Am I going to lose my driver’s license and for how long?
• What’s going to happen to my insurance costs?
• Moreover, many more.

In the state of Tennessee, if a person is convicted of DUI, that DUI conviction will become a permanent part of that person’s criminal record in the state of Tennessee. In many states, if a person is convicted of a first offence DUI charge, they may be able to have the conviction expunged from their criminal record in that state, but not in Tennessee. A DUI cannot be deleted from one’s criminal record in Tennessee.

Therefore, if you have been arrested on a DUI charge in the state of Tennessee, it is essential that you seriously consider hiring a skilled DUI lawyer to represent you in court. A large number of people who get arrested on a DUI charge decide not to hire a lawyer based on the lawyer fees that they will incur.

This approach is very wrong because fighting a DUI charge in court is nothing like going to traffic court to fight a speeding ticket. It takes years of schooling and experience to become a successful Tennessee DUI lawyer. Even if a person decides to hire a lawyer to represent them in court, but ends up hiring a General Practitioner lawyer to save some money over hiring a skilled criminal defence lawyer, that is more of a mistake than just trying to go it alone come court day.

Now you have paid much money to a lawyer who has no idea about the DUI laws in Tennessee and does not have the experience to represent you in court and effectively defend you. The majority of these lawyers are just going to walk you through the system and in the end talk you into pleading guilty to the charge of DUI. Now you not only have spent much money on a lawyer, but you also have a criminal record in Tennessee.

To choose the best lawyer you can to represent you in court, you should start by talking to your friends and family and see if any of them knew of a good Knoxville DUI lawyer and was there a successful outcome in their case. The one thing you want to make sure of is that the DUI lawyer you choose in the end has a successful winning track record and that you are confident with the lawyer. If you meet with a DUI lawyer and you feel like he or she doesn’t have time for you, what do think will happen if you hire this lawyer? They’re not going to put in the time required to defend you in court effectively.

If you live in Knoxville Tennessee, it is essential that you speak with a skilled Knoxville DUI Lawyer as soon as possible in the DUI process. Tennessee DUI laws are extremely tough, and a potential DUI conviction is not something you want to leave to chance.

How Blood Alcohol Content is Calculated in a DUI Arrest

The single most conclusive form of evidence heard against a defendant charged with DUI, or driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is blood alcohol content. Also referred to as BAC, blood alcohol content is determined in three distinct techniques. All three are often successfully utilised to prove the exact level of sobriety a defendant exhibits. The defendant’s BAC can be entered as evidence in a courtroom in nearly every state in the U.S.

The initial method in which BAC is determined is through a breathalyser examination. The accused driver blows a forceful stream of air into an analysing device, which then screens the level of alcohol present. Most TV shows and films glorify the breathalyser test, but it is in fact among the least accurate indication of blood alcohol content of the BAC tests used. You’ll often find many TV shows feature drunk driving from the officer’s perspective and portray them utilising a breathalyser unit to check BAC.

The arresting officer informs the accused that they must submit to a breathalyser test. Failure to comply can lead to the DMV, Department of Motor Vehicles, imposing much more severe consequences and license suspensions than if you had merely cooperated and provided a breath sample. Drivers over the legal limit can plead remorse or offer mitigating factors, and even have the evidence suppressed. Drivers who didn’t submit to testing cannot later argue on their behalf as successfully. Additionally, in most states, once you refuse to submit to a breath test, an added harsh penalty can be added from the court. Typically, this ends in a lengthier license suspension period, a higher fine or additional prison time.

A different determining method is a blood test. This testing is incredibly precise and regarded as the most trusted and reliable type of testing. It is virtually impossible for most attorneys to refute this sort of proof of drunk driving but an experienced drunk driving attorney can still examine the evidence from all perspectives as a way to search for potential defences. These range from medical explanations, faulty equipment, etc…

Most judges view blood testing for BAC to be an end-all in almost all cases. A skilled Seattle DUI lawyer will know how to display evidence in the most favourable light possible for you based on your unique circumstances, so seek help early on to protect your rights.

A highly skilled Seattle DUI attorney will determine what reasons can be utilised successfully in these types of situations, depending on the evidence presented. No data is always viewed as fail proof, especially in the eyes of Seattle DUI attorneys. There can still be an unusual circumstance within each case that can skew the evidence presented.

Field Sobriety Tests in California DUI

An officer on the street is always on the lookout for driving under the influence. The officer is typically looking for signs of intoxication from the driver. The first things that the officer looks for are how the suspect is driving- is the suspect swerving, does the vehicle have the headlights on, is the suspect driving the speed limit, and he will also look to see if the vehicle is staying within its lanes. Once the officer has pulled the vehicle, the officer will look for other signs of intoxication- does the suspect have bloodshot eyes, are the suspect’s eyes watery, does the suspect have slurred speech, is there a smell of alcohol coming from the suspect, and are there any alcohol containers in the vehicle. If the officer suspects that someone is driving under the influence, and he has established reasonable suspicion, the officer may order the suspect out of the vehicle to perform field sobriety tests. These tests are extremely subjective and are designed to be failed. It is important to note that the field sobriety tests are optional and nobody is required to submit to them. However, the officer will not tell you that the tests are optional.
If you do not refuse to take the field sobriety tests, three main tests make up the standardised field sobriety tests. Those three tests are:

  1. Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus
  2. Walk-and-Turn
  3. One-leg Stand

Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus

HGN is an involuntary jerking of the eye which naturally occurs as the eyes move from side to side inside of the eye socket. This happens when the eyes rotate at high peripheral angles. When somebody has been drinking alcohol and is otherwise impaired, nystagmus is extraordinarily exaggerated and occurs at fewer angles than in somebody that is not intoxicated. Officers look to determine if a person can smoothly track a moving object with their eyes from side to side. A person impaired by alcohol will also not be able to seamlessly track a moving object with their eyes from side to side. More specifically, the officer will be looking for three things:

  • If the eyes cannot follow an object horizontally.
  • If the jerking is distinct when the eyes are at their maximum deviation.
  • If the jerking occurs within 45 degrees of the centre of the eye.

If the police officer notices 4 or more clues between both of the suspect’s eyes, it is likely that the suspect has a blood alcohol level of 0.10 or more. The test is designed to determine if a suspect has a blood alcohol content of 0.10 or greater approximately 77% of the time.

Walk and Turn Test

Officers may also make the suspect do the walk and turn test. This is where the officer makes the suspect walk several steps in a straight line heel to toe while counting. After the suspect has taken the number of steps requested, they must then turn on one foot and return to where the test started. The officer will also be looking for several things to indicate that the suspect is under the influence:

  • If the suspect can’t keep their balance when they listen to the instructions.
  • The suspect begins to perform the test before the officer finishes their instructions.
  • If the suspect stops while walking the line to regain their balance.
  • If the suspect does not touch heel-to-toe with every single step.
  • If the suspect has to use their arms for balance.
  • If the suspect loses their balance while turning.
  • If the suspect takes the incorrect number of steps or forgets what number to count up to.

Officers understand that 68% of suspects that exhibit 2 or more of the above indicators typically have a blood alcohol level of 0.10 or higher.

One Leg Stand

The last test that I will write about is the one leg stand. This is where the officer will tell the suspect to stand with one foot raised around 6 inches from the ground and to count until the officer says the suspect to put their foot down. The officer typically times this test and stops the test at 30 seconds. The officer is attempting to see how close to 30 seconds the suspect was able to count. There are also signs that the officer is looking for with the one leg stand:

  • If the suspect is swaying back and forth while balancing on one foot.
  • If the suspect is using their arms for balance.
  • If the suspect is forced to hop to maintain their balance.
  • If the suspect is putting their foot down during the test.

Officers understand that 65% of suspects who show 2 or more of the above symptoms have a blood alcohol content of 0.10 or more. The more indicators that the officers pick up, the more persuasive the officer’s testimony will be in court.

The embarrassment from the roadside field sobriety tests given to suspected drunk drivers quickly gives way to the terrible reality of handcuffs, and the fear of the consequences that could follow a California DUI conviction, like the possibility of being sent back to jail for even a minute, or losing your California driver’s license for months, or even years. The attorneys at Ginny Walia Law Offices understand how you feel. More importantly, we know how to cushion or avoid the harsh consequences of a DUI arrest.

If you have been arrested for California DUI / DWI, it is vital that you act quickly to protect your driver’s license. You have only 10 days from the date of arrest to request a DUI DMV Administrative Per Se (APS) hearing with the California DMV.

DUIs in Texas: What to Expect

DWI repeat offenders are defined as those people who have been arrested for driving with a BAC of equal to or greater than 0.15 more than once in the last decade according to Texas law. Because of the very high DWI offender rates in Texas, the police take repeat offenders considerably severely. In this article, you will learn what you can expect if you or a friend or family member has been convicted of drunk driving a second time.

To begin, the person convicted must allow an assessment to search for an alcohol dependency or drug problem as soon as they’ve been convicted. A 36-hour program on the topic of the risks of driving while using drugs or alcohol is required by anybody convicted of a DWI at least twice, no matter the outcome of their evaluation. Lowering the rate of drunk driving is the focus of this program, on top of helping people with substance abuse problems. The class concentrates on learning to act productively, building a sense of self-worth and responsibility acceptance. Some groups and charitable organizations who are permitted to offer the program are located throughout the state of Texas.

If the convicted person’s determination comes back as having a problem with alcohol dependency or abuse, they might be given one of two options by their judge: spend time in jail, or entering a rehabilitation program. Three convictions for a DUI becomes a felony offence, so the opportunity to join a rehabilitation program instead of facing jail time could be a good idea to those convicted who was convicted more than once in the past.

A judge will also take into account a person’s history when deciding what length of time to suspend the person’s license. For a first-time offence, the suspension must be between 90 days and 1 year. For a prior conviction for driving drunk, the person’s drivers license must be suspended for between 6 months and 2 years. The suspension needs to last in between 1 and 2 years if any of the previous convictions were within five years of the current one.

You might be granted an occupational drivers license, even if your license is suspended. This is a restricted license which only lets you drive to your job or your college or university. A long history of prior convictions will of class make it harder to obtain even an occupational drivers license.

The manner of the arrest and individual judge can finish in a variety of outcome for a DWI. It is essential to have a good attorney when having been charged with driving drunk.