A DUI charge is a very serious offense that should not be taken lightly. The staff at Soliman Law Group, P.C. understands that facing such charges can be quite frightening and having a diligent DUI attorney on your side is necessary for protection of your rights. We therefore sympathize with how our clients may be feeling and pledge to support and defend them. Our firm takes pride in fighting for our client’s rights and working to give them the best chance at a favorable outcome. Many attorneys will simply advise their clients to plea guilty/no contest in order to come to a rapid disposition of the case, without making the effort to win for the client. We believe that a DUI charge can be attacked from various angles and an experienced and effective DUI attorney will be able to expose those angles and fight the charges against you.
A DUI is composed of two separate charges:
Charge #1: Vehicle Code (VC) §23152(a) accuses the defendant of driving impaired under the influence of any alcoholic beverage or drugs.
Charge #2: VC §23152(b) accuses the defendant of driving a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content of .08% or higher.
Both charges are usually misdemeanors, and either charge alone can support a conviction for DUI.
During a DUI traffic stop, the police officer will normally instruct the driver to undergo a field sobriety test. These tests, which are actually 100% optional for drivers over 21 years old and not on DUI probation, are merely subjective agility exercises administered to gather probable cause for a DUI arrest. The police then use these tests to substantiate sufficient probable cause, which is required to make a legal arrest.
After performing the exercises, the police will likely order you to blow into their roadside breath alcohol testing machine, another optional “test.” Known as the PAS device, the Preliminary Alcohol Screening Device is an unreliable tool that can easily mistaken blood alcohol for mouthwash or other non-alcoholic substances and may register a false reading that the prosecution will attempt to use against you.
Once you are arrested and taken to the police station, the blood or breath chemical test is not optional. It is mandatory by state law to submit to this chemical test and a refusal can cost a defendant their driving privilege for one full year. The refusal may also be admitted in criminal court as consciousness of guilt.