Los Angeles DUI Arrest Information
The objective of this site is to assist those who have had the misfortune of being charged with a DUI (driving under the influence) or DWI (driving while intoxicated). Understanding all of the formal procedures, laws, and penalties can be quite daunting for some. We hope our site can provide all of the information you will need as you move through your administrative and criminal proceedings.
The events that brought you to your current position may have begun with an accident or a DUI sobriety checkpoint, where you were given the standardized field sobriety tests. In addition to 3-5 of the usual coordination/physical balance tests, the officer probably requested that you breathe into a
breathalyzer (also known as a
preliminary alcohol screening device or PAS, Passive Alcohol Sensor). Breathalyzers, notorious for their inaccuracies, are small instruments that calculate a preliminary reading of your blood alcohol level. This test is becoming the only chemical test administered in an increasing number of drunk driving cases. Even if you pass a breathalyzer test, with .08% or lower, there is a chance you will still be arrested under suspicion of driving under the influence of drugs.
Once you arrive at the police station, it is the legal duty of the officer to inform you of your choice to take a breath or blood test. If you opt for a breath test, two samples must be taken at two minutes apart. The samples must also be within .02% of each other. The blood tests can be administered at the police station, a nearby medical facility, or a third party may come to give the test. While many officers will not inform you of your rights, you will face heightened penalties if you refuse the tests.
It is important that you understand the flaws of these tests that make them so unreliable and, many times, inaccurate. The high number of variables found in the human body, as well as imperfections in the equipment itself, can cause inconsistent results. This being said, however, you should also be well informed of the penalties you could be charged if you refuse the chemical tests available. (See DWI Driver’s License Suspensions)
You will lose your license if any of the following situations occur:
- You take the breath test and fail with a result of .08% or higher.
- You opt for a blood test that is usually tested at a crime lab a few days later.
- You refuse to take both the blood and breath tests.
If you hold a California driver’s license, you will then receive a pink
Notice of Suspension slip by the officer arresting you, and lose your license. If your license is issued by a state other than California, the officer does not have the authority to confiscate the property of another state. However, you will receive the same pink slip that will act only as a suspension to your right to drive in the state of California.
Laws in California concerning DUI suspensions are quite complex. In fact, the majority of judges and DMV employees do not even understand the laws themselves. One extremely important thing for you to remember is that you or, ideally, your DUI Attorney must call the local DMV’s Driver Safety Office (DSO) to arrange an administrative license suspension hearing. If this call is not made within 10 calendar days from the time of the arrest you will have forfeited your right to a hearing and any option of having the suspension
set aside. You can contact Los Angeles’s DSO at (800) 777-0133.
In order to give the prosecution time to evaluate all of the DUI evidence and apply appropriate charges, the initial court arraignment is scheduled for a month or more after the arrest. If you have not been charged with a felony, your appearance in court is not mandatory. It is strongly suggested that you obtain a Los Angeles DUI attorney to represent you.
If you would like to inquire about the option of retaining the Law Offices of Lawrence Taylor to represent your case, please contact our Los Angeles office. There is no obligation for the preliminary meeting, which is normally one to two hours long.