Articles Posted in DUI

Erratic driving, reckless driving, or speeding are all grounds for a California police officer to pull you over. Often, officers will suspect that you’re driving under the influence if they observe that your vehicle isn’t following standard traffic laws. However, there are plenty of reasons why you might violate laws, and they don’t have to include alcohol consumption or a blood alcohol content level of 0.08 or higher. For example, you may have been driving erratically, recklessly, or speeding because you became ill, hadn’t taken your medication, or were experiencing an emergency.

Unfortunately, most officers will request that you take a breathalyzer test to learn whether you were drunk driving. The request may upset you if you know that you weren’t drinking before getting behind the wheel or if you feel as though your rights are being violated. If you’ve refused a breathalyzer test, contact The Justice Firm to represent you.

California’s Breathalyzer Laws

Gun Law Enhancement

Gun Law Enhancements Can Result in Lengthy Sentences.


Under California gun laws, a sentence for a felony case can be “enhanced” if a gun was possessed or used during the commission of a crime. These laws can extend sentences well beyond the maximum punishment for the principal crime itself. If there are multiple enhancements or more than one enhancement, the punishment imposed will be the longest possible sentence. 

CDC Prisoners

CDC Prisoners seeking early release via the granting of parole.


Since being sworn in as Los Angeles County District Attorney in December 2020, George Gascon has hardly been out of the headlines. From eliminating sentence enhancements for hate crimes and dismissing gang enhancements to removing firearm allegations and continuing to push for resentencing and sentence commutation; Gascon has shown himself to maintain a progressive approach focused on rehabilitation. His latest changes to the DA’s office have been highly controversial. 


On December 7, 2020, Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascon was sworn in as the County’s 43rd District Attorney. Following his defeat of Jackie Lacey, a DA who had built a reputation for a “tough-on-crime” approach, Gascon went straight to work making changes to his office true to his platform of criminal justice reform, progressive services, and rehabilitative prosecution. A main goal of his platform being lowering the prison population. 

Gascon’s less punitive approach to crime includes no more gang enhancements, eliminating cash bail (including no longer seeking bail for anyone facing a misdemeanor charge or non-violent or non-serious felony), ending use of the death penalty, and providing resentencing eligibility. These major changes are expected to lead to the early release of thousands of state prison inmates whom Gascon said are unfairly serving overly long sentences.


The rapidly expanding pandemic crisis of COVID-19 has had sweeping effects on everyday life. Due to Center For Disease Control (CDC) recommendations California has taken immediate measures to protect the public by enforcing social distancing and restrictions of gatherings of more than ten (10) people. This has meant immediate actions by the California Supreme Court and the California Superior Courts. Trial and Appeal Courts have moved to cease operations by closing doors and postponing pending matters. In the Los Angeles Superior Court, only critical in-custody matters with substantive pending hearings are being dispositioned. All other matters – trial or otherwise – are being continued by the Court for 30-45 days. 

With the CDC recommending drastic changes in American lifestyle to limit the spread of the Coronavirus, it is uncertain if the Courts will resume normal operations in the next 60-90 days. 

On August 20, six people were injured and one killed as the result of a crash that took place in Coronado. According to reports, two of the injured victims were children. The accident occurred on Silver Strand State Highway after a Jeep crossed the center line near Pomona Avenue, crashing into two vehicles driving in a southbound direction. One of those involved died at the scene before first responders arrived.

News reports claim police believe alcohol was a factor in the deadly crash. The driver of the Jeep who crossed the center line was said to be in critical condition at an area hospital at the time of reports.

Driving under the influence, or DUI, is a serious offense in California. However, when someone operates a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol and causes a wreck in which someone sustains injuries or loses his or her life, the situation becomes far more serious. In this case, an individual may be charged with DUI causing injury according to California Vehicle Code 23153 VC. The prosecutor may charge this offense as a misdemeanor or felony; felony charges leave those found guilty facing harsher punishment.

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.

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