Valuable Information about First DUI Charges in Riverside
Riverside First DUI Attorney Group
A DUI is an equal opportunity crime since anyone who drinks and drives can be stopped and charged with it. While it is not against the law to drink while driving, it is a criminal offense if you are impaired in any fashion.
You face two charges of DUI in most cases:
- Driving While Under the Influence
- Driving With a BAC of 0.08%
The breath or blood test, and urine in some limited cases, can be objective evidence of your intoxicated or impaired state. By law, if your BAC is 0.08%, it is a rebuttable presumption that you are impaired. Any test taken within 3 hours of your driving is considered evidence of your blood alcohol content at the time you were driving. If you refuse testing, you can still be charged and convicted based on other circumstantial evidence of your impaired state.
Do You Know the Consequences of a DUI in Riverside?
Many first offenders are unaware of the consequences of a DUI. Though they may feel that spending a few days in jail or doing hours of community service is not a big deal, they fail to consider the repercussions of a DUI conviction in other areas of their lives.
A DUI conviction can mean loss of your license for up to 10 months. Though you may get a restricted license, you can only drive to and from work and to your DUI class. If placed on probation as so many defendants are when sentenced, any subsequent drinking and driving stop can subject you to jail time and extended loss of driving privileges. In any event, your auto liability insurance premiums will significantly increase
If your BAC test is at least 0.08% or if you refuse testing, the officer at the scene will undoubtedly arrest you and will take away your driver’s license in exchange for a 30-day temporary one. Because of the state’s Implied Consent law whereby every motorist impliedly consents to the testing of their blood alcohol if probable cause exists to believe they are intoxicated, you can lose your license for one year with no restricted license eligibility if you refuse.
The attorneys from the Riverside DUI Attorney Group have helped thousands of first time DUI offenders get their charges dismissed, acquitted at trial or the charges reduced significantly. Also, if arrested and given a 30-day license, immediately contact a lawyer from the Riverside DUI Attorney Group as you have only 10 days to request a DMV hearing regarding your license suspension.
If you are under 21, your BAC may not be more than zero. For commercial operators, it cannot be 0.04%.
CVC 23152 is the DUI statute:
“(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 any 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.
(e) It is unlawful for a person who is under the influence of any drug to drive a vehicle.
(f) It is unlawful for a person who is under the combined influence of any alcoholic beverage and drug to drive a vehicle.
(g) This section shall become operative on January 1, 2014.”
Circumstances Leading to a DUI Arrest
Depending on the time of day, if at a DUI checkpoint, your driving conduct or your demeanor, a law enforcement officer is trained to look for certain signs of a motorist driving while DUI:
- Driving too slowly or too fast for conditions
- Sleeping in your car
- Slurred or mumbling speech
- Bloodshot or watery eyes
- Strong odor of alcohol
- Empty beer cans or bottles in car
- Inability to find your license, registration and insurance information
- Losing your balance on FST or coordination tests
- PAS test registering alcohol
- Admission to drinking
Officers will usually indicate in a report or on the witness stand that you exhibited several of these signs since just one or two may be insufficient to show the officer had probable cause to arrest you for DUI. Anyone of our lawyers can review these observations and present reasonable and common explanations that are non-alcohol related.
License Suspension or APS Hearing
After an arrest for a DUI, defendants are given a 30-day temporary license and advised that they have but 10 days to request an Administrative Hearing before the DMV regarding the suspension of their license. If you do not request this hearing, you waive your right and your license will be suspended. Our defense lawyers from the Riverside DUI Attorney Group have represented thousands of clients at these hearings as part of our representation and have been successful in clients retaining their driver’s licenses in numerous cases. The issues at these hearings concern:
- Was there probable cause to stop and detain our client
- Was our client’s BAC 0.08%
- Did our client refuse testing?
- If so, was it reasonable
Our attorneys will cross-examine each witness against you at the APS hearing, which is usually just the arresting officer and possibly the officer or technician who administered the BAC test, and offer evidence challenging the breath test results or the actions of the officer.
Penalties for a First DUI Offense
First DUI offenders may expect the following sentence:
- 2 to 5 days in jail and up to 6 months in jail in egregious cases
- 2 additional days in jail if you refused chemical testing
- Fine of $390 up to $1,000
- Summary or informal probation of 3 years
- 3-months participation in a DUI program
- Loss of license for 6-10 months
- Restricted license possible
- 0ne-year loss of license with no restricted license if testing refused
Aggravating Conditions that Add to Sentence
Aggravating conditions that if present at the time of your arrest will enhance your sentence are as follows:
- Having a passenger under the age of 14
- Your BAC result was at least 0.15%
- You refused testing of your breath or blood
- You were speeding at least 20 mph over the speed limit
2 days or more can be added to your jail sentence. If there was an accident or your driving conduct was especially egregious while you had a young child in your car, the DA could charge you with felony child endangerment.
Our attorneys have decades of experience in defending those charged with DUIs. Typical defenses include:
- Lack of probable cause to stop your car
- Lack of probable cause to arrest you for DUI
- The officer’s conclusions regarding your impairment were biased, flawed or based on poor training
- You were not properly advised of your rights
- There are over dozens of factors that can adversely influence the breath test or blood sample that results in a false high reading of your BAC
- Your BAC was lower than it was while driving as you were tested hours later
Our Riverside 1st-DUI attorneys have decades of experience and in successfully defending clients in all types of DUI cases. Contact the lawyers at the Riverside DUI Attorney Group if you have been arrested on a DUI at (888) 754-9860 for a free one-on-one consultation!