Quantico DUI Lawyer
The law of driving under the influence (DUI) occupies an awkward place in the criminal laws of Quantico. Not only do many DUI cases involve no victim; they also involve an otherwise law-abiding person who simply made a poor decision.
Unlike most other criminal laws, DUI focuses on the potential for danger than for the actual harm that it causes. If you have been accused of a DUI crime – whether for drunk driving or drugged driving – hiring a Quantico DUI lawyer to defend against the charge can preserve your interests and protect your future, including your right to drive. Call an experienced attorney today to discuss your case.
Laws Governing DUI
Virginia Code Ann. § 18.2-266 is the statute that covers DUI in Quantico by prohibiting drivers from operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated.
Importantly, intoxication can be a vague and tricky subject, particularly when it comes to drugged driving. People react differently to the effects of alcohol and drugs, making it impossible to predict whether they will be riskier on the roads.
Blood Alcohol Content and Drunk Driving
However, the DUI law in Quantico does have a per se limit to the amount of alcohol that a driver can legally have in their bloodstream while they drive. This blood alcohol content (BAC) limit is 0.08%.
Unfortunately, how police determine a driver’s BAC is woefully unscientific. Breathalyzers only determine BAC indirectly, through alcohol dropped off by blood passing through a suspect’s lungs. Additionally, BAC levels do not directly correlate to levels of inebriation – one person can be hopelessly inebriated at 0.09%, while someone else can be able to function almost normally.
Field Sobriety Tests
Another way for police to gather evidence of a DUI crime is by asking drivers to take a field sobriety test. These tests are also prone to produce false positives that can be used against a suspect in a subsequent DUI case.
Two DUI Processes
A source of much of the confusion about DUI arrests and charges comes from the fact that a DUI case involves two processes – one criminal and one administrative – that run at the same time.
The criminal case involves the courts and prosecutors, and can lead to criminal penalties, like fines and jail time. The administrative process, on the other hand, deals exclusively with a defendant’s right to drive, is handled by the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, and can lead to a license suspension.
Numerous Penalties for a DUI Conviction
The penalties for DUI depend on the circumstances of the incident and can become worse if the driver has been convicted for DUI, before. However, they all involve the following sanctions:
- Required alcohol classes
- A suspended driver’s license
- Possible jail time
Possible DUI Defenses
There are, however, several defenses that a Quantico DUI lawyer can use to fight against a charge of drunk driving or drugged driving.
Unreasonable Traffic Stop
One of the most common defenses is that the police conducted a traffic stop that violated a driver’s Fourth Amendment rights. Unreasonable searches and seizures violate these rights, and police need to have sufficient evidence that a crime is occurring to pull someone over to the side of the road.
A DUI-defense lawyer in Quantico can also argue that the BAC testing machines or the field sobriety tests were poorly conducted. If successful, the evidence can be thrown out, severely hampering the prosecutor’s case.
Speak with a Quantico DUI Attorney Today
DUI charges are serious, and often follow conduct that was less than criminal. Letting these accusations become convictions can wreak havoc on your future.
By contacting a Quantico DUI lawyer, you can fight against the charge that you were driving while intoxicated and protect your rights.