How an Orange County DUI Lawyer Gets results: Dedication, Knowledge and Hard Work.
An Orange County DUI Lawyer with knowledge and experience can mean the difference between losing everything and keeping your license and your freedom. Not guilty verdict and dismissals at trial, driver’s licenses saved from suspension, clients avoiding jail-time… these are examples of knowledge and experienced put to work. Call 213-400-0358 to speak with an Orange County DUI Lawyer who fights everyday for clients rights.
What are the consequences of a DUI in Orange County?
For first offense DUI’s, there are two areas of concern for drivers involved in DUI arrests. These are: The DMV process and the Criminal Court Process.
For a first offense DUI (where the driver involved doesn’t have any prior DUI’s in the last 10 years) the driver is facing a driver’s license suspension from the DMV of 4 months, with mandatory alcohol classes, a requirement to apply for a new license and a requirement to show proof of insurance.
Criminal Court Consequences:
The criminal court consequences of a first offense DUI involve a misdemeanor case being brought against the driver, resulting in a criminal record, fines, mandatory alcohol classes and possibly jail-time.
What an Orange County DUI Lawyer can do for their clients:
An Orange County DUI Lawyer’s most important task is to fight for clients’ rights. This includes fighting in court and at the DMV because DUI cases involve license suspension from the DMV and a criminal record from a criminal court if the driver is convicted of DUI. Experience and knowledge in handling DUI cases is important because of the scientific, legal and technical issues that come up in the typical DUI case. Gathering evidence, going over the case with scientific experts, researching the latest legal defenses, and giving driver’s peace of mind are all important jobs for an Orange County DUI Lawyer.
What courthouses are DUI cases in Orange County held?
North Court (Fullerton):
For cases in the northern areas of Orange County, such as in Fullerton, Yorba Linda, Orange, Anaheim or surrounding areas, their case will likely end up in Fullerton Court.
West Court (Westminster):
For cases in Huntington Beach, Westminster, Stanton, and areas in the western part of Orange County, the courthouse at Westminster handles the DUI case.
Harbor Court (Newport Beach):
For cases in southern Orange County, such as Dana Point, San Clemente, Irvine and areas south of there, DUI cases are often handled at Harbor Court in Newport Beach.
Central Justice Center (Santa Ana):
For the remainder of cases, the court that handles the DUI case is in Santa Ana.
What happens in a case with an Orange County DUI Lawyer:
A typical DUI case in Orange County has three phases:
-The Arrest phase
-The DMV phase
-The Criminal Court phase
In the typical Orange County DUI case, the driver will be stopped at night by police for a minor traffic violation, or stopped at a DUI checkpoint. During the stop, the law enforcement officers involved will detect alcohol, usually on the driver’s breath, and form a suspicion that the person in driving under the influence of alcohol. Often the driver will be asked to perform a variety of balancing and coordination tests, called Field Sobriety Tests, that are designed to determine if the person is under the influence of alcohol or drugs. If the driver does poorly on these tests, police officers will often ask them to blow into a portable handheld breathalyzer type device (called a PAS or “preliminary alcohol screening” device). If the driver blows above 0.08, the driver will be arrested for suspicion of driving under the influence.
The DMV phase
The DMV hearing is not simply an “interview” and involves the driving privilege of the driver accused of DUI. Following the arrest, the driver only has 10 days to have a lawyer contact the DMV to request a DMV hearing to save their license. Otherwise, the driver will have their license automatically suspend their driver’s license. The DMV process is a formal legal proceeding and should not be taken lightly. At the DMV hearing, evidence from the police, including police reports, breath or blood testing information, witness statements, accident reports (if any) and other similar evidence is examined by a DMV employee (called a DMV Hearing Officer).
The Criminal Court phase:
Sometime after the DMV hearing, the driver will face criminal charges in the Orange County criminal court system. The first hearing that a driver is obligated to attend is called an “arraignment” where a judge will notify the driver that they are facing criminal charges stemming from their DUI arrest. Typically, the driver is charged with misdemeanor DUI under California Vehicle Code (CVC) 23152. Other charges may also be brought against the driver. For example, if the driver was involved in a serious accident, a felony DUI charge may be brought against the driver.
What are the defenses an Orange County DUI Lawyer can raise?
An Orange County DUI lawyer who regularly handle DUI cases is familiar with the common DUI defenses that win DUI cases. DUI cases are unique and challenging because they involve complex scientific evidence (from blood alcohol testing to breath testing to various machines used by law enforcement), unique legal arguments (involving the probable cause that police have to stop a driver) to unique fact patterns (such as accidents or events that do not have many witnesses). The main defenses that an Orange County DUI Lawyer can successfully use to resolve a DUI case can be categorized into three main groups: Scientific defenses, Legal Defenses and Factual Defenses.
DUI cases in Orange County involve the collection and examination of blood or breath evidence from the accused DUI driver. In DUI cases, the blood alcohol level of the driver can be measured directly through the use of a blood test, or indirectly, with the use of a breathalyzer. A breathalyzer is a machine that collects breath blown out of a driver’s lungs and theoretically can measure the person’s blood alcohol level because alcohol in the person’s blood will travel from their arteires through the thin lining of the person’s lungs into breath they exhale.
DUI cases often involve legal defenses, such as issues involving the probable cause of police to search the driver. The police must have legal probable cause to search the driver, or any evidence they gather can be excluded from court in a suppression hearing (called a 1538 hearing because the authority for the hearing is found in Penal Code 1538).