The Initial DUI Process
The procedures following a DUI arrest can be incredibly complicated. After the police officer draws your blood or administers a breathalyzer, the officer will typically allow you to call a cab or arrange for a ride so that you may go home. The officer will also provide you with a few pieces of paper. The most common papers include your citation, blood destruction notice and MVD paperwork. At the bottom of the citation, your first court date and time will be listed.
What to Expect at Court
Your first hearing following a DUI arrest will be an arraignment. An arraignment is a very short hearing where the judge will read your charges and ask if you plead guilty or not guilty. If you plead guilty, the judge will sentence you at that time. If you plead not guilty, the judge will schedule a second court date. This is a common error, and can be quite damning, nearly as bad as admitting you were drinking when you were pulled over.
At the arraignment, you will not be provided with your police report, your blood work or any other information relating to your DUI arrest. I cannot understand why someone would plead guilty to a crime without ever seeing very important information relating to their case. I liken this decision to betting your life savings on a hand of poker without ever seeing your hand. This just doesn’t make sense. NEVER PLEAD GUILTY TO A DUI WITHOUT CONSULTING WITH AN ATTORNEY. You should always have an attorney when you step into a court room. With years of training and knowledge they should be prepared to assist you during your case; however picking the right attorney can be difficult. We wrote a helpful article that gives you the quick tips on how to choose the best DUI lawyer, we wrote a hep
Experience and Knowledge are the Keys to Your Defense
Your next hearing will be a pretrial conference. At the initial pretrial conference your attorney will receive your police report from the prosecutor and have initial discussions regarding your case. At this hearing, the prosecutor usually does not provide every piece of material that is essential for a thorough DUI investigation. Prosecutors are hoping that either you are not represented or that you have an inexperienced attorney who does not know which documents to request. It is critical that you have an attorney who knows which information and material is needed to fully prepare for your DUI defense. The prosecutors take the approach that if they are not asked for certain material, they will not turn it over.
As defense attorneys, we have the opportunity to have several hearings prior to setting a matter for trial. While we like to resolve cases at the pretrial phase, there are times when the prosecutors are being unreasonable and it would be in our client’s best interest to schedule the matter for a trial.
Contact A DUI Attorney for Help
A quality DUI defense attorney knows how to handle a DUI case at each step in the process. We know how to find loopholes in a DUI case and negotiate with prosecutors. If the need arises to take a matter to trial, we know how to prepare a case in an effort to convey evidence to a jury that will help result in a not guilty verdict.
The DUI process can be confusing and nerve-wracking. My office prides ourselves on simplifying the process. We would be happy to review your case and discuss approaches and options for your DUI defense. Please contact us here, by phone, or feel free to use the contact form on the right side of the page. One of our associates will make sure to help you with your case today.