DUI LAWYER IN SACRAMENTO
Pulled Over for A DUI/DWI in the Sacramento County?
Many of us have done it before – we’ve gotten into the car when we aren’t 100% sure we were under .08 BAC, but we did it anyways and got pulled over! You are confident in your driving abilities and that you are under the legal limit, but there is still that question in the back of your mind asking if you are going to be OK. There’s a reason your mind isn’t sure, and that’s because there’s no guarantee you will be.
A lot of people don’t know, but you can be charged with DUI even if your BAC is under .08 !!!
This is why it is important to always follow the below instructions if you have been pulled over and you have alcohol in your system. These steps will limit your chances of being arrested, could result in a lesser charge if you are taken to jail, and could even help get your case thrown out!
- Calmly pull over without making any sudden movements – The officer will be scrutinizing your every move and any questionable driving while you are nervous from being pulled over will be counted against you
- Be polite – The officer will be investigating your actions while he speaks with you and being polite is in your best interest
- Refuse the field sobriety test (“FST”) and the hand held breathalyzer test – The FST is highly subjective and it is 100% at the officer’s discretion whether you pass or fail. The handheld breathalyzer tests are notoriously unreliable, and often overstate the amount of alcohol in an individual’s system
- Request and take a chemical test at the police station – If you have been pulled over for DUI, you will almost certainly go to jail, and it is in your best interest to accept this and request a chemical test at the station because this is the most reliable test and limits the amount of evidence the arresting officer can accumulate against you
- Following your release, write down everything you can remember:
- Where you were and what you were doing prior to your arrest
- How much you had to drink
- Amount of time that elapsed before you drove
- How the officer treated you and any questions/instructions given to you
- Your statements to the officer
- Location of and reason for the traffic stop
- When you took your chemical test and the amount of time since your last drink
- Contact a DUI attorney in Sacramento – Once you are released and have completed the above instructions, it is imperative that you contact an experienced DUI attorney in Sacramento that can begin to build a defense.
Have You Been Arrested for DUI in Sacramento?
If you have been arrested for DUI, do your best to complete step 5 above, and don’t worry if you can’t remember everything. The more information, the better, but we have been helping individual’s charged with DUI in Sacramento for years and have the necessary experience to build a solid defense regardless of the circumstances. Contact our DUI attorney in Sacramento today for a free consultation!
SACRAMENTO DUI ATTORNEY
Drugs & Preliminary Breath Test (PBT)
The NHTSA established eight field sobriety tests to determine drug usage: horizontal gaze nystagmus (HGN), pupil reaction, pupil size, standing steadiness, one-leg stand, walk-the-line, finger-to-nose, and pulse rate. Officers also consider skin marks, apathy, drowsiness, and hyperactivity. Although relatively accurate indicators of drug use, the reliability of the results is contingent upon the training and experience of the office administering tests.
NHTSA established several field sobriety tests to determine drug use. Eight tests were developed – one leg stand, finger-to-nose, walk –the-line, standing steadiness, HGN, pupil reaction, pupil size, and pulse rate. Officers also consider skin marks, apathy, drowsiness, and hyperactivity. Although the tests are considered good indicators of drug use, their reliability depends on the training and experience of the officer.
The preliminary breath test (PBT) is offered at the scene of a police stop to determine motorist intoxication. The PBT is part of the implied consent law, and in a few states refusing to take the test can result in a lengthier driver’s license suspension. Although the PBT result is not admissible in criminal proceedings, it is usually admissible in a driver’s license suspension hearing. Since the PBT is not accurate or widely accepted as reliable scientific evidence, it cannot be used to prove criminal guilt beyond a reasonable doubt; however it can be used to prove civil culpability by a preponderance of the evidence (more likely than not) is a driver’s license suspension hearing.
PBT reliability is significantly influenced by external factors unrelated to alcohol consumption. Depending upon PBT model used, the result can be skewed and inflated by non-tethanol components. The fuel cell PBT is distorted by the presence of acetaldehyde, methanol, isopropanol and n-propranolol. The gas sensor PBT has inflated results with the previously mentioned chemicals, as well as acetic acid, paraldehyde, and ethylene glycol. In most studies performed, the PBT was found to be 60-80% accurate.
SACRAMENTO DUI LAWYER
DUI – Vehicle Impoundments
Even if the vehicle owner is not involved in a drunk driving accident, in certain instances the vehicle can be seized, impounded or sold. Typically, statutes require the owner to have knowledge of two things:
- The driver has a prior drunk driving offense: and
- the vehicle will be used in conjunction with the consumption of alcohol.
Although “knowledge” is difficult to prove, it can be a major inconvenience to resolve this misunderstanding in court.
Prior to the sentencing hearing, transfer the vehicle title into the name of someone having no association with the drunk driving incident, such as a friend or relative. This eliminates any seizure, impoundment or auction issues, and allows the owner to retain possession of the vehicle. One day after the sentencing hearing, transfer title to the original owner. In some instances the defendant cannot register a vehicle until the driver’s license suspension period has expired. Under these circumstances, transfer title into the name of a third-party having no connection with the drunk driving accident.
DUI ATTORNEY IN SACRAMENTO
DUI for Strange Substances
Did you know you can be charged with DUI for DWC, driving while caffeinated? If you are charged with DUI, contact a Sacramento DUI attorney at our firm for consultation today.
Increased attention has been given to the crime of Driving Under the Influence over the past couple decades and the trend continues to this day. Individuals who get behind the wheel of a car have a responsibility to ensure the safety of themselves, their passengers, and everyone else they share the road with. Many of us understand that in order to drive safely we must be fully capacitated, meaning we have a clear and healthy mind and body, when we get behind the wheel. Those of us who choose to drive incapacitated as a result of drugs or alcohol will be targeted for arrest to ensure the safety of everyone on the road.
Driving Under the Influence
Many people are not aware that you can receive a DUI for a variety of different substances, not just alcohol. Anything you ingest that will affect your judgement and or motor skills can get you a DUI charge. Contrary to popular belief, this includes a variety of different substances that you may use on a daily basis! Certain substances, such as illegal drugs, will get you a DUI if you test positive in any amount, regardless of your driving at the time. Other substances represent a bit of a grey area, and you will be charged with DUI based upon a combination of the amount of the substance in your body and your driving ability at the time of arrest. A man in California was recently charged with DUI for driving while caffeinated! The arresting officer noticed poor and erratic driving which he suspected was related to substance abuse, but the man did not test positive for alcohol or drugs. He was released but later charged with DUI citing significantly elevated caffeine levels present in his bloodwork.
Surprising Medications & Substances That Could Get You a DUI
- Cough and Cold Medicine – Nyquil, Robitussin, and other Ephedrine and Pseudoephedrine-based medicines
- Caffeine – Coffee, espresso, energy drinks and caffeine pills
- Narcotic Pain relievers – Percocet, Oxycontin, Vicodin, Norcos and other oxycodone and hydrocodone-based medications
- Anti-anxiety medications – Xanax, Valium, Ativan, Halcion, Paxal and other benzodiazepines
- Hyperactivity and Attention Deficit Disorder (“ADD”) medications – Adderall, Ritalin, Focalin and Concerta among others
The list of possible substances that could get you a DUI is immense, and would likely take up multiple pages on this website. No one could ever list them all, and it is difficult for many of us to avoid driving while on prescribed medications. This means that protecting yourself and others on the road requires you to be aware of your body and mind, and to make sure that you are fully capacitated before you behind the wheel.
It can be difficult for a prosecutor to prove that your impaired driving was based on the medication you were taking, but it does happen. If you have been charged with DUI for a substance that you didn’t even think it was possible for, please contact a Sacramento DUI attorney at this law firm immediately. We have experience fighting DUI cases involving all types of substances and are here to help!