FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT VENTURA DUIS
The following questions and answers provide some important information for individuals facing DUI charges in Ventura County:
THE POLICE PULLED ME OVER FOR SPEEDING AND THEN CHARGED ME WITH DUI. CAN THEY DO THAT?
Yes. If the police make a valid traffic stop for any reason, they can arrest you for DUI if they find “probable cause” to do so once they pull you over. However, speeding is not indicative of DUI, so there must be other grounds for your arrest. Perhaps your eyes were red or your speech was slurred, and this may have led the arresting officer to perform field sobriety tests (FSTs) on which you performed poorly.
MY BAC WAS BELOW 0.08% BUT THE POLICE STILL ARRESTED ME FOR DUI. THE CHARGES ARE BOGUS, RIGHT?
Unfortunately, no. Under California law, you can be arrested for DUI regardless of your BAC if the police have probable cause to believe that you are driving “under the influence” of alcohol or drugs. In order to obtain a conviction, the prosecutor must prove (i) that you were unable to control your vehicle with the ordinary standard of care, and (ii) that this inability was the result of alcohol or drug intoxication. Strongest Defense has handled numerous Ventura DUI cases involving BAC levels under 0.08%.
I JUST GOT ARRESTED FOR A VENTURA DUI. WHAT CAN I DO TO PROTECT MY DRIVER’S LICENSE?
The police officer who arrested you probably took your driver’s license and gave you a temporary license (also called a “pink sheet”) that is valid for thirty days. In order to have any possibility of preventing your driver’s license from being suspended, you need to request an administrative hearing at the California DMV within ten days of your arrest. If you fail to request this hearing, the DMV can suspend your license even if you are never actually convicted of DUI. When you request a hearing, you can also request a “white sheet” that will allow you to continue driving until the time of your hearing.
Regardless of what happens at the DMV hearing, you can also face a license suspension if you plead guilty or get convicted on your Ventura DUI charge in court. As a result, it is best to hire an experienced Ventura DUI lawyer who can represent you both before the court and at the DMV.
I’VE READ THAT YOU CAN FACE UP TO A YEAR IN JAIL FOR A FIRST-TIME MISDEMEANOR DUI IN VENTURA. IS THIS TRUE?
Yes and no. It is technically true under the law that a misdemeanor DUI is punishable by up to a year in jail. However, in a standard Ventura DUI case you are probably only looking at forty-eight hours. For second and third misdemeanor DUIs, typical jail time in Ventura ranges from thirty to 180 days, though the punishment can increase substantially for DUIs involving serious injuries. If you qualify, you can avoid spending time in jail entirely by serving work release or work furlough.
WHAT OTHER PENALTIES AM I LIKELY TO FACE FOR MY VENTURA DUI?
On a standard first-time Ventura DUI charge, you can expect to receive jail time, probation, suspension of your driver’s license, fines and fees, and mandatory participation in the Drinking Driver Program (alcohol school). The penalties increase for multiple offenders. Read more about the enhanced penalties for prior DUIs.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
For more information about how you can protect your driver’s license and fight your Ventura DUI charges, contact Strongest Defense today to arrange a free consultation.