Received a DUI in Camarillo?
If you’re facing DUI charges in Camarillo, having an experienced defense attorney on your side can make a difference. There are important points to consider when evaluating a potential lawyer for your case.
Qualities to Look for in a Camarillo DUI Lawyer
- Knowledgeable About DUI Defense – This may sound obvious, but it is extremely important. If you choose a DUI attorney in camarillo who is not up to date on California’s laws and possible defenses to DUI allegations, you will not receive the best possible legal representation.
- Experienced Trying and Negotiating DUIs – Some attorneys will tell you that you can face up to a year in jail for a misdemeanor DUI conviction. While this is technically true, for a typical first-time DUI you are looking at the standard minimum sentence of forty-eight hours. As a result, an attorney who tells you this is either (i) trying to scare you into hiring them, or (ii) inexperienced in DUI defense. Either way, you will be better off with an experienced, straight-forward attorney on your side.
- Focused on DUI Defense – While general practitioners are great lawyers for certain situations, DUI defense isn’t one of them. Especially in Camarillo. You need an attorney who tries and negotiates DUI cases in the Ventura County courthouse on a daily basis. These cases involve a complex set of issues implicating California DUI laws, field sobriety test standards, evidentiary issues, Constitutional rights, various defenses, and overall defense strategy that can only be properly handled by an attorney who focuses his or her practice in DUI defense.
How Can I Beat My Camarillo DUI?
A commonly asked question when facing a DUI charge in Ventura County is, “How can I beat my DUI?” The truth is, there’s no set formula for beating a DUI charge. However, there are a number of recognized defenses that may be available in your case. For many of these defenses, we’ll need information from you to determine the next course of action.
At The Law Offices of David Lehr, we work closely with our clients to help them recall all of the facts leading up to and surrounding their DUI arrest. Sometimes the facts might seem irrelevant, but can actually play a significant role in your case, so this is actually an extremely important part of the process.
Some of the possible defenses for your case may include:
- Lack of Reasonable Suspicion for Your Traffic Stop – In order to pull you over, the police must have a “reasonable suspicion” that you are guilty of some criminal activity. The courts have discredited many purported bases for police traffic stops, including minor weaving. If your traffic stop was unjustified, you are entitled to have your entire DUI case dismissed.
- Lack of Probable Cause for your Arrest – Similarly, the police must have “probable cause” to arrest you. If the police report states invalid justifications for your arrest (such as an “odor of alcohol”), then much of the prosecution’s evidence will have to be excluded from your case. Although, in cases involving serious DUI in Ventura, the police will generally have probable cause.
- Alternate Explanations for Your Driving Pattern – Just because you swerve, drift or weave a bit while you are driving, this does not establish that you either (a) are intoxicated, or (b) are impaired as a result of intoxication. There are often other reasons (such as fatigue) for these types of driving patterns.
- Alternate Explanations for Your Failure of FSTs, and Other False Cues – Likewise, you may have bad balance due to a medical condition, or there may be other reasons why you cannot successfully perform a field sobriety test. Additionally, maybe your voice is always slurred, or perhaps your eyes are red because you smoke. There can be any number of reasons besides intoxication for many of these so-called “cues” for alcohol impairment.
- Field Sobriety Tests were Improperly Administered or were Not Standardized – Police officers often fail to properly administer field sobriety tests (FSTs), and many still use outdated FSTs that are no longer considered reliable. This too can lead to evidence being excluded from your case.
- Faulty Administration of Your Chemical BAC Test (Breath or Blood) – There are established procedures for administration of chemical BAC tests. If these procedures were not followed, the test results can be excluded from the evidence against you.
- Unmaintained or Un-calibrated Testing Equipment – Similarly, if the records for the equipment used for your chemical BAC test show that it was not properly maintained, this too can be used to discredit your test results. There is also a known standard rate of error even for properly-administered breath and blood tests.
- Your BAC Rose After You Were Pulled Over – If it takes the arresting officer some time to administer your breath test, or if you elect to take a blood test at the local hospital, it is very possible that your BAC will rise over the legal limit in between the time that you are pulled over and the time the test is performed.
- Faulty Breath Test Result Due to Acid Reflux, Heartburn or GERD – If you live with GERD, or if you were suffering from acid reflux or heartburn when you took your breath test, your BAC reading could have increased artificially as a result of your condition.
- Faulty Breath Test Result Due to Other Reasons – Belches, hiccups and vomiting can all cause alcohol to travel from your stomach back to your mouth. When this occurs, a breath test will register an exaggerated BAC. Your breath temperature, breath pattern, and even your diet can also alter your BAC reading.
- No Reading of Miranda Rights – If you were placed in custody or subjected to interrogation, the police were required to read you your Miranda rights. If they failed to do so, any statements you made should be excluded from your case.
These are just a few of the many defenses that your Camarillo DUI lawyer may be able to raise on your behalf to fight your DUI. To find out more, be sure to call and schedule your free consultation.
Penalties For Camarillo DUI
The penalties for a California DUI increase with every conviction you sustain within a ten-year period. A conviction occurs when you either (i) plead guilty, or (ii) are found guilty at trial. The penalties, depending on how many DUIs you’ve had, can get as high as 3 years imprisonment, 4 years suspension of your drivers license and more. The penalties can increase even more if your DUI resulted in injury or death of another.
In addition to jail time, the fines associated with a DUI conviction are no light matter. On a first offense DUI you may be fined up to $1,000 and your fines and other fees increase further for multiple DUI offenses.. It’s important that you speak with the attorney about your specific situation to start formulating a defense that’s right for you.
Contact The Attorney Today
To learn more about what to do with your DUI case, be sure to contact The Law Offices of David Lehr for a free consultation. Call us at 805-477-0070, or fill out our contact form here.