Driving while under the influence of alcohol is more than just a traffic violation. Instead, driving under the influence (DUI) is a criminal offense that can result in the loss of your license, fines, and sometimes jail time. If you were recently charged with DUI, it is vital to hire a capable Riverside County DUI lawyer to assist you in formulating a defense. Shaffer T. Cormell has over 20 years of experience defending people charged with DUI in California courts. Mr. Cormell will assertively advocate on your behalf to help you seek to retain your liberties. Mr. Cormell represents people charged with DUI in Blythe, Banning, Riverside, Murrieta, Indio, Palm Springs, Coachella, Joshua Tree, Hemet, San Bernardino, Fontana, Rancho Cucamonga, Victorville, Barstow, Brawley, El Centro, Winterhaven, and other cities throughout Riverside, San Bernardino, and Imperial Counties.DUI Under California Law
In California, while the motor vehicle code dictates that anyone who drives a vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or higher can be charged with DUI, it also states that it is unlawful for anyone under the influence of alcohol to operate a vehicle. Thus, a person can be charged with DUI even if his or her BAC is below 0.08%, or if he or she did not undergo any chemical testing to determine his or her BAC. In many cases, a person will be charged under both provisions of the DUI statute.
While determining whether a person is guilty of DUI under the objective provision requiring a blood alcohol level of 0.08% or higher is relatively straightforward, a conviction for being “under the influence” is subjective and largely relies on the testimony of the arresting officer. Under California law, a person is “under the influence” of alcohol when his or her mental and physical capabilities are impaired to the extent that the person is no longer able to drive with the caution that a sober person would exhibit under the same circumstances. If you are charged with DUI, an experienced DUI attorney in Riverside County can advise you of the implications of the charges that you face and discuss the evidence that the State may introduce against you.Evidence in DUI Cases
The State must prove each element of a DUI charge beyond a reasonable doubt. First, under California law, the State must prove that you were actually driving a car while under the influence of alcohol. The courts have interpreted this to mean that the State must show that there was some movement of the vehicle prior to your arrest. Next, the State must prove either that you were “under the influence” or that your BAC was 0.08% or higher.
In cases involving a BAC of 0.08% or higher, the State must prove that your BAC was at that level when you were driving the vehicle. Thus, the State must show that a chemical test was properly administered at the time of your arrest. This may seem straightforward, but often a Riverside County DUI attorney can challenge this assertion. Factors such as the calibration of any testing instruments and the manner in which the test was administered can come into play in determining whether the results of the test are accurate. In cases in which someone is charged with driving “under the influence,” the State will typically introduce evidence that suggests that they were driving in an unsafe manner at the time of the arrest, such as testimony that they were swerving or failing to obey traffic control devices. It is important to speak with a capable DUI defense attorney to discuss your available defenses.Explore Your Options With a Seasoned Defense Attorney
A DUI conviction can result in the loss of your license and other penalties, as well as a criminal record. If you are charged with DUI in Riverside, San Bernardino, or Imperial County, it is prudent to confer with a DUI defense attorney to discuss the circumstances surrounding your arrest. Shaffer T. Cormell has substantial experience representing people charged with DUI in California courts and will work diligently to help you pursue a successful result in your case. Mr. Cormell has the knowledge and experience needed to develop strong arguments to help you seek to retain your rights. To schedule a meeting to talk to a knowledgeable DUI lawyer in Riverside County about your case, contact him at (888) 922-5051 or via the online form.