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Best Strategies for Multiple DUI Arrests

Sizzling LEO | 3:45 AM | 0 comments

It is never a good decision to drink and drive, but those individuals that do should always know beforehand what they will do when they are caught. Individual logic can differ depending on the level of the impaired driving charge. All states now have a tiered statute and they employ comprehensive punishments associated with this criminal behavior. Legislatures and prosecutors take this very seriously. The personal protocol stems from the severity of the charge.

The First and Second DUI

All states have enhanced their impaired driving laws in the past ten years. Most of the prosecution changes address multiple offenders. A first driving-under-the-influence charge normally carries no jail time with a fine in the $500 range. One problem with an initial charge is that starts the time period in which an offender can receive an enhanced charge for any subsequent impaired driving charges. The time frame for most states is five to seven years.

It is important to remember that the state cannot use field sobriety tests or field breath analysis to establish probable cause. However, the results of field sobriety tests can be used as reasonable suspicion and the driver can be apprehended and taken to an official blood alcohol level measuring device. Refusal to take a test can result in an additional driving privilege suspension of at least one year. Refusing the test becomes an additional charge. Driving privilege suspensions for a first DUI are normally 30 days. A second charge usually receives a one-year suspension of privileges. If the defendant chooses to take either case to trial, then refusing the test may be an effective strategy, but there can be consequences.

Multiple Offenders

A Merced DUI lawyer points out that as individuals move up the scale of enhanced charges, the possibility of being indicted for a felony can occur. In most states takes effect on the fourth driving-under-the-influence charge. The primary evidence in these cases is the blood alcohol level determination. Driving privileges are often suspended for five years. Refusing the test can enhance the charges of any case, but the absence of the documentation may also be the defending attorney’s best bargaining chip.

Anyone arrested on a multiple offenders charge should not offer any information when being questioned. The best plan is to have an experienced DUI attorney that can accept the case immediately. Once the attorney indicates he will be counsel, the questioning stops and all communication with the court is filed with the attorney. Calling an attorney immediately can also be an advantage for setting bail and determining the appropriate prosecution assessment. Cases that will go to the grand jury for indictment will take much longer to adjudicate, and the prosecution will know that the defendant is serious about fighting the case.

Always keep in mind that states have set strict minimums for impaired driving charges in order to keep the court from plea bargaining cases at their own will. This is a very serious issue for legislatures in each state. The most important component of enhanced charges is that the prosecution is not just entitled to a conviction. Many impaired driving offenders are on the borderline with their blood alcohol content level. The intoxication level to be presumed impaired is .08 for all classifications of charges. Incarceration periods for felony DUI charges range from one to five years in a state facility and suspension times begin from the day of the conviction, so a prison sentence could last longer than the driving privilege suspension.

Anthony Joseph is a writer and editor who contributes this article for DUI defense awareness. Merced DUI lawyer, Terry Wapner has practiced law for 25 years and is a member of both the National College of DUI Defense and the California DUI Lawyers Association. Attorney Wapner can defend your DUI charges in the King, Merced, Stanislaus, Madera or Tulare County areas of California.

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