Articles Posted in DUI

Driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs or driving in a reckless manner can leave you facing criminal charges at any time of year, however the odds greatly increase on a holiday such as Halloween. While Halloween is a fun time for not only children and teen but grown adults who often attend parties, safety should be top priority.

There will be many more pedestrians out and about on the streets of Los Angeles as kids go trick-or-treating, which means the risks of an accident increase. Children and teens often don’t pay a lot of attention to their surroundings, and some costumes are difficult to see after dark. A child may dart out from between parked cars on the side of the roadway. It is vital to pay strict attention to the roads, and to avoid any type of distraction whether by a cell phone, eating, or even engaging in conversation with passengers. Most important of all, do not get out on the roadways if you’ve been drinking! The last thing you want to face is a DUI charge, or even worse – an accident that injures someone as a result of impaired driving.

What if you’re attending an adult Halloween party where alcohol will be served? There are lots of options other than getting behind the wheel. If you intend to partake of alcoholic beverages, be sure you have a designated driver. If this isn’t possible, call a taxi to take you home, or spend the night at the host’s home or a nearby hotel that’s within walking distance. Call a friend to come pick you up. There is absolutely no reason to be driving after you’ve had a few drinks, so make plans ahead of time.

On Wednesday February 18, a woman whose name was not revealed in news reports was handcuffed and taken into custody following a high-speed chase on Antelope Valley Freeway and Pearblossom Highway, according to articles at the Daily News. California Highway Patrol officers became aware of the situation after noticing the woman weaving in and out of lanes, and speeding in a Chrysler 300.

The pursuit continued for approximately 25 minutes with the woman reaching speeds of 85 mph in the northbound lanes and continuing onto streets in Palmdale before finally coming to an end near Adela Court just before 1:30 a.m.

Initially, the woman slowed down as the officer attempted to pull her over, however she fled the scene which led to the high-speed chase. Once the chase came to an end, the officer administered a field sobriety test, and took her into custody. News reports do not indicate whether the woman was arrested on suspicion of DUI, reckless driving, or another offense.

Nearly everyone has heard of field sobriety tests, regardless of whether you have been pulled over on suspicion of drunk driving.  Even those who have never faced the stress of possibly being arrested for DUI want to avoid field sobriety tests at all costs, simply because they have heard the horror stories and know that it’s possible to be arrested for something you’re not guilty of.

What you may not be aware of is that these tests, administered by police, are subject to highly unreliable results.  While no police officer would admit to someone he or she pulled over that the results of these tests are far less reliable than those of other tests such as breath or urine tests, the fact is the results are questionable at best.

The three common tests utilized in Los Angeles and throughout California each have their own inherent flaws; these tests include the one-leg stand test, horizontal gaze nystgamus, and walk-and-turn test.  Unless you are in the law enforcement or legal industry yourself or are affiliated with someone who is, you probably have no reason to know that the results these tests yield on a frequent basis are inaccurate at best.  Most drivers have no idea that the horizontal gaze nystgamus test is only 77% accurate – and it is the one of the three tests identified as the most reliable!  What does this mean for motorists?  That if stopped for suspicion of drunk or impaired driving, there is a 1 in 4 chance you will be found to be intoxicated.

When you have been arrested and charged with driving under the influence, you may think it a waste of money to hire a Los Angeles DUI attorney – particularly if you have consumed alcohol and were operating a vehicle.  As a lawyer, it’s amazing to watch the number of people charged with DUI in arraignment court who plead guilty after the judge has advised them of sentencing.  What’s even more amazing is that most never consider having their case analyzed by a capable DUI lawyer – or even review their reports.  Essentially, pleading guilty is the same thing as being convicted by a jury; the accused pays the price in terms of fines, driver’s license suspension, potential jail time, and more, when much of this could have been avoided had he or she consulted with an attorney who is skilled and knowledgeable in the area of DUI.

There are a number of benefits when you choose to hire a Los Angeles DUI lawyer; if you want to avoid a criminal record and potential damage to your career/job, it’s really a must.  What are the three most important reasons to hire an attorney when charged with driving under the influence?

Effective Defense Against DUI Charges.  Theses types of cases are highly technical, and therefore require the expertise of a seasoned attorney.  BAC (blood alcohol content) levels are determined via chemical tests including blood, breath, or urine.  Machines used to administer these tests are prone to produce inaccurate results if not properly calibrated.  DUI matters are fact specific; an attorney who focuses in this area possesses extensive knowledge of these facts, and knows how to identify potential weaknesses which assist in building a strong and effective defense.

Rhondi Durand, principal of a Canyon County Jr. High school, pleaded no contest on July 29 to driving under the influence.  The Arroyo Seco Junior High School principal admitted she had made a mistake, and now vows to turn her life around and be a better mother, wife, and principal.

Durand was arrested by Santa Clarita Valley sheriff’s deputies on May 29; according to a news article at Signalscv.com, Durand’s BAC was over .20%, more than double California’s legal limit of 0.08%.  After pleading no content to the DUI charge, Durand was ordered to pay $550 in fines, complete an alcohol program, and was sentenced to 3 years of summary probation.

The principal is very lucky to have kept her job, saying in news articles that she was “very grateful.”  Officials of the school district said that while they take the conduct of employees very seriously, they stand behind Durand and have confidence in her abilities as the school’s principal.