I just heard on the news that there have been over 200 arrests recently for DUI-related cases in Los Angeles County. The police are out in force, arresting people. Not just the California Highway Patrol, who's the main culprit for catching people for DUIs, but law enforcement agencies across Los Angeles County.
What you want to do is to attack this thing in an intelligent way. You want to hire an attorney right off the top. Get somebody with experience in the local court where your case is pending.
Let that attorney contact the DMV on your behalf within the 10-day time frame to set up a hearing and see if there's any way to avoid a suspension of your driver's license.
Also, let the attorney set up for the court appearance that is going to be pending, showing up on your behalf. We get in there and can make it so you don't have to show up for that first court appearance.
Typically, we will enter a not-guilty plea, get all the paperwork, and ensure there's no bail set so you get taken into custody. Sometimes, if you have a high blood alcohol level, especially around the holidays, the judge may make you do some AA meetings to remain out on your own recognizance where you don't have to post the bail.
DUI in California – Defined
California Vehicle Code 23152 VC defines the crime of driving under the influence of as follows:
“(a) It is unlawful for a person who is under the influence of any alcoholic beverage to drive a vehicle.
(b) It is unlawful for a person who has 0.08 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood to drive a vehicle.
For purposes of this article and Section 34501.16, percent, by weight, of alcohol in a person's blood is based upon grams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood or grams of alcohol per 210 liters of breath.
In any prosecution under this subdivision, it is a rebuttable presumption that the person had 0.08 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood at the time of driving the vehicle if the person had 0.08 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood at the time of the performance of a chemical test within three hours after the driving.
(c) It is unlawful for a person who is addicted to the use of any drug to drive a vehicle. This subdivision shall not apply to a person who is participating in a narcotic treatment program approved pursuant to Article 3 (commencing with Section 11875) of Chapter 1 of Part 3 of Division 10.5 of the Health and Safety Code.
(d) It is unlawful for a person who has 0.04 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood to drive a commercial motor vehicle, as defined in Section 15210. In a prosecution under this subdivision, it is a rebuttable presumption that the person had 0.04 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood at the time of driving the vehicle if the person had 0.04 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood at the time of the performance of a chemical test within three hours after the driving.
(f) It is unlawful for a person who is under the influence of any drug to drive a vehicle.
(g) It is unlawful for a person who is under the combined influence of any alcoholic beverage and drug to drive a vehicle.”
How Can a DUI Lawyer Help You?
So, we will cover all the angles for you, and then, once we make that initial appearance, we will send you the discovery in the case, which is the paperwork.
You'll be able to review that. Then we'll meet. We'll sit down and talk about everything. I will have had the opportunity already to speak to the prosecutor, give you some insight on what their position is regarding the case, and then, obviously, use my 30-plus years of experience, having worked for the district attorney's office, a superior court judge and then defending people just like you since the early 1990s.
I can give you an idea of exactly how we're going to handle the case – whether it will be fought at a jury trial or whether it will be a situation where we're working out some resolution with the prosecutors.
Some of the factors they are going to look out for in deciding what the resolution is going to be are how high your blood alcohol level was and what you were doing at the time of your contact with the police. In other words, how were you driving, what was your criminal record, and what are other factors specific to you and your situation?
What they're assessing is how dangerous you were out on the road because they're also trying to anticipate possible future conduct on your part and seeing what they can do to deter you from putting yourself in a position where you're drinking alcohol and driving.
If you need the best, and I think you do because you want to ensure this case is handled correctly, pick up the phone now. Ask for a meeting with Ron Hedding. I stand ready to help you. The Hedding Law Firm has offices in Los Angeles, CA.