California’s DUI laws are some of the most stringent and punitive laws in the United States. There are several factors that are taken into account when a person is charged with a DUI. These factors include age, blood alcohol concentration (BAC), number of previous DUI convictions, whether an accident resulted or not, the county in which the person was arrested, etc.
Many people think that driving a vehicle with a BAC of .08 or higher is the only thing that constitutes driving while under the influence. In reality, California law provides that a person may not drive while “intoxicated.” If the prosecutor’s office believes a person was intoxicated with a BAC under .08, that person may still be charged with a DUI.
The baseline rules for DUI’s are as follows:
A person under the age of 21 may not drive with a BAC of .01 or higher.
A person under the age of 18 may not drive with any measurable amount of alcohol in their system.
A person over the age of 21 may not drive with a BAC of .08 or higher.
If a person has been convicted of a DUI and are on probation, they may not drive with any measurable amount of alcohol in their system.
In addition, repeat offenders face harsh punishment. First time offenders usually avoid jail time and must complete a 3, 6, or 9-month alcohol program ordered by the court. In addition, their license will be suspended for 30 days. A person who is convicted of a second DUI within 10 years of a previous conviction will face up to 1 year in prison, and is usually ordered to complete an 18-month alcohol program. In Los Angeles County, a second time offender must also install an interlock ignition device (IID) in their car for the entire 18 months. Third time offenders face a mandatory 90 days in jail, and steep fines, in addition to other harsh punishments.
A fourth DUI in 10 years will be treated as a felony.
In addition to the court case, a defendant faces a DMV case as well. If a DMV hearing is not set within 10 days of arrest, the defendant’s license will automatically be suspended. It is imperative to act quickly after a DUI arrest.
There are numerous ways to successfully defend a DUI charge. Many people plead guilty in the false belief that there is no hope. In reality, a successful DUI prosecution requires precise procedural, technical, and scientific application by the police. And many times, mistakes are made which require a dismissal of the case.
At the Champion Law Firm, no stone is left unturned in trying to uncover mistakes made by the police. All possible defenses are explored. If you’ve been charged with a DUI, call the Champion Law Firm today to speak to an experienced criminal defense attorney. Consultations are always free.
If you’re looking for a Los Angeles DUI Attorney, contact us today.