Just because you suffer a California DUI arrest doesn't mean you have to suffer a California DUI conviction. There are countless defenses that experienced California drunk driving attorneys know how to successfully employ. Below is a brief description of the 10 that are most commonly argued.
When prosecuting a California driving under the influence (DUI) case, one of the first things that DUI prosecutors focus on is your driving pattern. They routinely have the DUI arresting officer testify that you were "driving in a manner consistent with someone who was under the influence of alcohol or drugs". Most often times this so-called "pattern" includes allegations that you were speeding or weaving within your lane.
An experienced DUI lawyer rebuts this evidence by having the officer testify about all of the ways that you drove properly and safely. A DUI attorney will elicit testimony from the arresting officer that (1) the majority of traffic violations are committed by sober people, and (2) "speeding" and a variety of other violations that police frequently cite as the reason they initiated a DUI stop aren't recognized by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) -- the nation's leading authority on DUI -- as characteristic of drunk driving.
Tony's DUI defense attorney would have the officer testify that Tony was otherwise driving fine. Tony was driving within the speed limit, pulled over as directed, parked without difficulty, and had no other problems controlling his car.further evidence that Tony was driving with "the caution characteristic of a sober person". His California DUI attorney would additionally have the officer admit that sober people regularly drift into other lanes because they're tired, eating, reading, talking on their phone, and/or are otherwise distracted due to issues having nothing to do with drug or alcohol consumption.
Your physical appearance plays a big role in your California DUI investigation. The officer who arrested you for DUI will undoubtedly testify that you were "under the influence" because you had
Incidentally, these "objective signs and symptoms of intoxication" are all listed on a pre-printed DUI arrest form used by the CHP, the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), and a variety of other local law-enforcement agencies. These DUI arrest reports allow an officer to simply "check off" that you displayed these signs / symptoms without any further elaboration.
A skilled DUI lawyer defends you by addressing all of the "innocent" explanations that could have led to those signs.allergies, fatigue, eye irritation, embarrassment, frustration, nerves.and that drinking in and of itself (and therefore smelling of alcohol) doesn't amount to driving under the influence.
A knowledgeable DUI attorney will elicit testimony that actual alcohol, in fact, has no odor. The jury will hear that there's no way to tell by smell alone if you've been drinking virgin drinks, non-alcoholic beer or liquor-based cocktails.
Field Sobriety Tests (FSTs) are heavily relied on by the "prosecution team" -- made up of the prosecutor, the arresting officer, and the DUI criminalist -- to almost always conclude that you were guilty of drunk driving. The arresting officer will testify that you "performed poorly" on these tests, as you were unable to follow his/her "simple" instructions based on your impairment.
Your DUI defense lawyer will explain that your natural physical coordination, nerves, and a variety of other issues play a huge role in these "balance and coordination" exercises. A seasoned DUI defense attorney will also get the investigating officer to admit to the fact that the number of things you did right while performing your FSTs far exceeded the number of things that you did wrong.once again highlighting the officer's true bias against you.
The field sobriety tests that the arresting officer had you perform will also likely be called into question, as most officers don't stick to the "NHTSA 3 Standardized Field Sobriety Tests (SFSTs)".and even if they do, the officers typically don't properly administer or evaluate them.
California DUI law mandates that before an officer gives you a "breath test," he/she must continuously observe you for fifteen minutes. During this time, you are not supposed to eat, drink, vomit, belch, burp or smoke, as doing so may affect the results of your test. The reason this is so important is because if you do any of these things.and alcohol moves from your stomach to your mouth.your blood alcohol content (BAC) might be inaccurately high.
A seasoned DUI defense attorney knows how to discredit the officer's 15-minute observation period. Most officers conduct this observation period when they're completing paperwork and/or while they set up the breath test machine. An improper 15-minute observation period also enhances the argument that the officer wasn't following proper procedures while conducting the entire driving under the influence investigation.
California's Code of Regulations Title 17 is what governs how DUI blood and breath tests are conducted. It sets forth all of the requirements that are necessary for an officer to properly maintain the integrity of a blood or breath test. Title 17 applies to
When an officer fails to conform precisely to these standards and regulations, an experienced DUI defense lawyer knows the most effective ways to call your entire DUI investigation into question.
"Mouth alcohol" is just that.alcohol that remains in the mouth. Although stationary DUI breath testing machines and Preliminary Alcohol Screening (PAS) devices are supposed to collect air from your deep lungs (called alveolar air or referred to as "deep lung air"), residual mouth alcohol can interfere, which leads to a false high BAC reading.
can also produce mouth alcohol, resulting in a BAC much higher that what is truly in your system.
Becky's drunk driving defense attorney called a DUI toxicologist to the witness stand who testified that heartburn and the consequential act of burping could in fact produce "mouth alcohol". The witness further explained that Becky's "mouth alcohol" likely resulted in a much higher BAC than what only two glasses of wine earlier in the evening would have produced.
Let's be clear -- there is nothing illegal about drinking before you drive, so long as you're not impaired at the time you are driving. Alcohol takes a while to absorb into your system. Just because you drink alcohol doesn't mean you'll immediately feel its effects.
While the alcohol is absorbing, your blood alcohol content is "rising". Although this process takes an average of about 50 minutes, it can last as long as three hours from the time you finish your last drink. It doesn't matter what your BAC was when you're back at the station, after having gone through a lengthy drunk driving investigation -- it matters what your level was at the time you were driving. Period.
By the time she performed her field sobriety tests.which of course, the sheriff said she performed poorly.she was taken to the station and submitted to a breath test, where she "blew" a 0.09%. Sheila's Palm Springs DUI defense lawyer elicited testimony from the prosecutor's expert that Sheila's absorption process probably wasn't complete when she drove home. Jurors heard that at the time of driving, it was very likely that Sheila's BAC was below the illegal 0.08%.
Although officers routinely testify that DUI suspects displayed physical signs of impairment, they usually don't testify that defendants displayed signs of mental impairment.unless, of course, the person was obviously and undeniably intoxicated.
The disconnect here is that mental impairment always precedes physical impairment. Depending on the facts of your drunk driving arrest, a savvy DUI lawyer will elicit testimony that a person who displayed signs of physical impairment (but not mental impairment) probably had some other explanation for their driving and behavior that wasn't alcohol related.
The toxicologist that John's Long Beach DUI defense attorney retained testified that even though John had a couple of beers, it wasn't the alcohol that was affecting him physically, since he showed no signs of mental impairment. Medicine, sickness, nerves, or a host of other issues could have contributed, but it was very unlikely that John was driving under the influence when he was otherwise mentally alert.
A California drunk driving investigation is supposed to be safeguarded by a large number of procedures that the officer must follow in order for you to be convicted of DUI. These range from the "probable cause" that is required before an officer can conduct a traffic stop, to reading you your "Miranda" rights prior to questioning you, to following California's Title 17 regulations.
A knowledgeable DUI attorney knows these exact procedures and how to have evidence excluded and/or cases dismissed when they're not followed. California DUI lawyers will conduct "suppression hearings" otherwise known as "Penal Code 1538.5 hearings" if (1) they don't believe the officer had the right to stop you in the first place, and (2) to have a "pre-trial" opportunity to question the officer and illuminate holes in the prosecution's case.
are illegal if they were posed without first advising Lucy that she had the right to remain silent.
Lucy's diligent DUI lawyer ultimately convinced the Riverside D.A. to reduce the DUI charge to reckless driving based on (1) Officer Joe's unlawful interrogation, and (2) other "questionable" tactics that Officer Joe employed, which were revealed when Lucy's DUI attorney cross-examined Officer Joe during the suppression hearing.
Although it may seem pointless to fight a California DUI where it appears like the officer did everything "by the book" and your BAC was at or above a 0.08%, DUI attorneys know that EVERY drunk-driving case can and should be examined for defenses:
These are all defenses that could be raised to save you from being convicted of a DUI.
Example: Mitch was arrested by a very nice officer, "blew" a 0.11% and knew he had 4 drinks during a long dinner prior to driving, even though he didn't feel like he was under the influence by the time he drove. A friend convinced him to contact an Anaheim DUI attorney.
Mitch's DUI lawyer reviewed all of the records that pertained to the particular breath-testing instrument used that was used on Mitch. The attorney discovered that there had been a "maintenance required" flag on that machine the day prior that hadn't been taken care of. After discussing the case with Mitch, he further discovered that Mitch was on a low-carb diet at the time of the offense which could also produce a BAC higher than what was truly in his system. After deciding to fight his case, Mitch was acquitted.
Driving under the influence is an area of the law that is complex, scientific, and technical. An attorney who doesn't routinely defend these types of cases will put you at a severe disadvantage when it comes to truly understanding the science and laws that make this type of case so truly unique and entirely possible to defend.
If you or a loved one has been arrested for a California DUI, we invite you to contact us at one of our conveniently located DUI law offices to discuss your case and explore all possible defenses.
For information about Nevada DUI defenses, go to our article on Nevada DUI defenses.
If you or a loved one faces misdemeanor or felony charges, contact our California criminal defense attorneys for help. We'd be glad to meet with you for a free consultation at one of our local criminal law offices in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Van Nuys, Pasadena, Long Beach, Orange County, Rancho Cucamonga, San Bernardino or Riverside.
A Powerful, Effective Advocate to Have in Your Corner
In my time of need I called on Neil Shouse and his law firm. It was one of the best decisions I've made in my life. Not only did he step up to assist me, he went the extra mile in every sense of the word. I found Neil to be honest, professional, and tireless in his efforts on my behalf.
3500 West Olive Ave.
Burbank, CA 91505
450 North Brand
Glendale, CA 91203
Las Vegas Office:
2300 W. Sahara Ave.
Las Vegas, NV 89102
Long Beach Office:
444 West Ocean Blvd.
Long Beach, CA 90802
Los Angeles Office:
5670 Wilshire Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90036
Newport Beach Office:
4590 MacArthur Blvd
Newport Beach, CA 92660
1055 East Colorado Blvd
Pasadena, CA 91106
Rancho Cucamonga Office:
3200 Guasti Road
Ontario, CA 91761
4480 Main Street
Riverside, CA 92501
455 Capitol Mall
Sacramento, CA 95814
San Bernardino Office:
432 N Arrowhead Ave
San Bernardino, CA 92401
San Diego Office:
3111 Camino del Rio
Norte, Suite 400
San Diego, CA 92116
San Francisco Office:
425 Market Street
San Francisco, CA 94105
San Jose Office:
95 S. Market St.
San Jose, CA 94111
Santa Ana Office:
500 North State College Blvd.
Orange, CA 92868
Van Nuys Office:
14500 Roscoe Blvd.
Van Nuys, CA 91402
2625 Townsgate Road
Westlake Village, CA 91361
If you'd like further assistance...
Join us to discuss your DUI case at any of our
local offices: You can also contact us 24/7 at
888.327.4652 for a free consultation
West Covina Office:
100 N. Barranca Ave
West Covina, CA 91791
Copyright © 2013 Shouse Law Group - Los Angeles DUI Defense Attorneys - Los Angeles Driving Under the Influence Defense Lawyer - Drunk Driving Defense Lawyers - All rights reserved.
California DUI Defense Lawyer Disclaimer: The Drunk Driving, DUI, DMV Drivers License Suspension, dui defense, or other legal defense information presented at this site should not be considered formal legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer or attorney client relationship. Our criminal defense law firm serves the following communities, among others: Los Angeles County, California, Agoura, Alhambra, Bellflower, Beverly Hills, Burbank, Calabasas, Century City, Chatsworth, Compton, Culver City, Diamond Bar, Downey, El Segundo, Encino, Glendale, Glendora, Hermosa Beach, Hidden Hills, Hollywood, Huntington Park, Inglewood, Los Angeles Lawyer, La Canada, Long Beach, Los Angeles Attorney, Malibu, Manhattan Beach, Marina Del Rey, Norwalk, Palos Verdes, Pasadena, Pomona, Rancho Palos Verdes, Redondo Beach, Rolling Hills, San Dimas, San Fernando, San Marino, San Pedro, Santa Clarita, Sierra Madre, Santa Monica, South Gate, South Pasadena, Sylmar, Torrance, Universal City, Valencia, Van Nuys, West Covina, West Hollywood, Walnut, Westchester, Westlake Village, Whittier, Woodland Hills, California, Orange County Criminal Defense Attorney and DUI lawyer for Orange County; Attorney and DUI lawyer San Bernardino County, California, Ontario, Rancho Cucamonga, Fontana, Redlands, Upland, Riverside, Corona, Norco, Santa Barbara County, Santa Barbara.
© 2013 Shouse Law Group. All rights reserved. We employ Copyscape Premium. Any republishing of copyrighted material without the express written consent of the publisher is prohibited. Such plagiarism is illegal, constitutes professional misconduct and constitutes an infringement of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.
Sitemap | Los Angeles County criminal defense lawyers | Orange County criminal defense attorneys | Ventura County criminal defense attorneys
San Bernardino County criminal defense lawyers | Las Vegas Nevada criminal defense lawyers | Neil Shouse