DUI or driving under the influence is one of the most common cases filed every year. A DUI case conviction can have serious penalties and leave a permanent stain on your record. The obvious and best prevention to being arrested for a DUI is to NOT drink and drive. If you get arrested for DUI, the best possible outcome you can hope for is a dismissal. A skilled DUI lawyer can help look at all possible options that would lead to a dismissal. Certain circumstances surrounding the arrest may have significant effects on the outcome, so it’s best to be informed about what you should do when you’re flagged down for DUI.
When you’re stopped for DUI, police officers cannot do a preliminary sobriety test without your consent. However, you could still get arrested if the police have reason to believe you were driving under the influence; and if you’re arrested, California’s implied consent laws say that refusal to do a chemical test could mean losing your license and paying a hefty fine. The police could also use your refusal as evidence that you were driving under the influence.
What you can do is observe and try to remember as many details about your arrest as possible. The police officer must have a legal reason for believing that you were under influence, and therefore for recommending the test or for putting you under arrest. Ask the officer why you were pulled over; if they can’t give you any reason, be sure to tell your lawyer. If a valid reason was given, you may give your consent; but try to remember everything the officer says. He/she must not force you to do the test; if you refuse the test, they must explain the consequences of your actions and tell you what you can and cannot do.
A criminal defense attorney like one from The Chastaine Law Office can also try to have the blood alcohol content (BAC) test results thrown out by proving that the equipment was faulty at the time of the test. If there was a blood draw or urine sample taken, your lawyer can look into how the sample was handled and watch out for any break in protocols concerning this.
Whatever the circumstances, get in touch with an experienced lawyer as soon as you get arrested for DUI to ensure your rights are protected and you get proper legal guidance.