Saturday, March 28, 2015

"Driving" must be proven in California DUI cases, say attorneys, which is not hard if you're the only one in car rolling down the freeway even if you were asleep

Tired after drinking but still got to get home?  Find another way, San Diego California DUI attorneys warn.  The last thing you want to do is fall asleep while driving.  That's a sure way of being arrested for DUI.

"Driving" is still has to be proven in California DUI cases, lawyers remind. The police must be able to present  competent evidence of actual volitional movement of vehicle in order to convict for DUI.  This article shows some of the possibilities of being able to - vs. not being to prove - driving in a Drunk Driving case in California.

If you have had too much, do not drive.  Last night's latest San Diego DUI arrest is a good example.

A twenty-five year old woman was found unconscious in the slow lane on northbound 805 near Clairemont Mesa Blvd just before 1:00 a.m. She must have passed out.  A California Highway Patrolman smashed her vehicles window, got inside and stopped the rolling vehicle.  The officer ran along side the vehicle with his flashlight.  He woke her by tapping on the window but the vehicle kept going.  She could not stop it.  He as able to stop it and get her out.  She had a liquor bottle in the vehicle and was arrested for San Diego DUI.  Bail was set at $2,500.00.


Thursday, March 26, 2015

Should I trust what the arresting officer said and did in my DUI arrest, San Diego DUI lawyers are regularly asked?

Do you think the California DUI cop who arrested you is on your side?
Do you know that most San Diego California DUI officers are competing for most DUI arrests award given annually by MADD?
Why might someone suggest you may not not need a San Diego DUI attorney? 

Do you think the San Diego DUI officer may possibly be keeping information from you?  (e.g. test record?)
Did the San Diego DUI officer tell you the hand-held gadget was optional and you did not have to blow (if you are over 21 and not on California DUI Probation)? 
[California statute requires the officer to inform you it is voluntary; you do not have to blow in the field if not on DUI probation and not under 21 - blow or give blood only at the station or jail.]
Do you think the San Diego DUI officer wants you to hire a lawyer to investigate, challenge him and fight him? 
In all misdemeanor cases in courts throughout San Diego County, one cannot represent oneself.  You must get an attorney, hopefully a California DUI Lawyers Association certified DUI Attorney Specialist.  Why will your court require this? Misdemeanors are considered very serious, punishable by up to 6 months in jail + significant penalties and far-reaching ramifications including fines, programs, ignition interlock device, vehicle impounds, public work service programs, MADD, SCRAM bracelet, AA meetings, loss of license, increased penalties from enhancements, effect on employment, loss of liberties, etc.
What about the acrobatics or San Diego DUI field tests?  Did he say how you did on these gymnastics or field sobriety tests?  Did he seem fair about the way he subjectively judged your performance or ability to follow instructions?
Why did he take your license or issue a pink DMV order of suspension?
Do you trust your DUI cop now?

Saturday, March 14, 2015

St. Patrick's Day San Diego California DUI Patrol and Checkpoint Update

St. Patrick's Newsflash

California DUI checkpoints will ruin the Irish want-a-bes this week.  St. Patrick's Day is notorious.  That's why San Diego County DUI Law Center's attorney Rick Mueller posts these free locations.

San Diego County Sheriff's Department will be out in full force in the coming days looking for impaired drivers, California DUI lawyers report.

"When you celebrate St. Patrick's Day, be responsible," said Sheriff Bill Gore.

Avoid increased California DUI patrols by deputies across San Diego county on Tuesday, March 17th and Tuesday, March 31st beginning at 7:00 p.m. through 3:00 a.m. the following day.

There will also be two San Diego California Drunk Driving checkpoints in the following cities later this month:

• Friday, March 20th - San Marcos, North San Diego County
• Saturday, March 28th - Vista, North San Diego County

These locations are presently secret.  If you learn of the location, email to get it posted here.

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) claims nearly 300 people have been killed in drunk-driving crashes between 2009 and 2013 across the United States.  Don't be part of St. Patrick's Day that has become a dangerous time because of people who decide to drink and drive.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

1,500 drivers trapped by Pacific Beach San Diego California DUI checkpoint, attorney says.

15 people were popped for California DUI at the 4200 Mission Bay Drive, Pacific Beach / San Diego California roadblock used widely in the past San Diego attorneys often warn.

It is important to stay away from certain main roads entering and exiting Pacific Beach on friday and saturday nights.  Because Grand Ave. feeds into Mission Bay Drive, avoid Grand.  Also avoid Garnett and Ingraham Streets.  If you wish to exit PB, consider going north through La Jolla even though it will take longer, or maybe go south through Mission Beach without using Ingraham, San Diego California DUI lawyers suggest.

San Diego County DUI Law Center provides a free, thorough List of California Drunk Driving Checkpoint Locations here.

Almost 1,500 drivers were trapped at this San Diego DUI checkpoint beginning Friday March 6 through Saturday March 7 at 3:00 a.m.  Over half of those California drivers were checked for drunk driving or DUI investigation.

Friday, February 20, 2015

"What am I looking at if I try to run from cops attempting to arrest me for DUI," California lawyers are asked? 6 months in the slammer

6 months jail is what one guy got for a San Diego DUI - felony cop evasion beef in California, attorney say.

A man who was under the influence of drugs when he led deputies on a high-speed chase in the North County was sentenced Thursday to 180 days in jail and five years probation.
Matthew Wayne Ross, 31, pleaded guilty to a felony count of evading police and a misdemeanor count of driving under the influence of drugs in connection with the Jan. 6 pursuit.
Shortly before 11 p.m., deputies saw a dark Dodge Dart go through a red light at West Mission and Nordahl roads in Escondido, said San Diego County sheriff‘s Sgt. Paul Michalke.
The ensuing pursuit went westbound into San Marcos, with the suspect reaching speeds of more than 75 miles per hour and narrowly avoiding a collision with another vehicle at one point, the sergeant said. The chase ended just west of West Mission and North Rancho Santa Fe roads after deputies deployed a spike strip that flattened three of the Dart’s four tires.
Ross struggled with deputies while he was being taken into custody and was bitten on his right shoulder by a police dog.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

California drivers must stop and submit to a DUI checkpoint when signs & displays are posted, attoreys remind.

In San Diego, DUI checkpoints trap motorists throughout the county.  Drunk Driving roadblock locations are posted by San Diego DUI attorneys.  Google posts these here.

In Florida, one lawyer maintains you can download a note and put it on your window as you enter a checkpoint.  That won't work on the left coast.

California drivers are often confronted with driving up to a DUI checkpoint.   If it can legally be avoided, do it.  But risk some cop stopping you if seen.

The question asked lawyers is whether a California driver has to stop at a DUI checkpoint?

The short answer is yes.

If you try not to, here is the law violated, not to mention a probable arrest for DUI.

California Vehicle Code Section 2814.2 provides:

"(a) A driver of a motor vehicle shall stop and submit to a sobriety checkpoint inspection conducted by a law enforcement agency when signs and displays are posted requiring that stop.

(b) Notwithstanding Section 14602.6 or 14607.6, a peace officer or any other authorized person shall not cause the impoundment of a vehicle at a sobriety checkpoint if the driver's only offense is a violation of Section 12500.

(c) During the conduct of a sobriety checkpoint, if the law enforcement officer encounters a driver who is in violation of Section 12500, the law enforcement officer shall make a reasonable attempt to identify the registered owner of the vehicle. If the registered owner is present, or the officer is able to identify the registered owner and obtain the registered owner's authorization to release the motor vehicle to a licensed driver by the end of the checkpoint, the vehicle shall be released to either the registered owner of the vehicle if he or she is a licensed driver or to the licensed driver authorized by the registered owner of the vehicle. If a notice to appear is issued, the name and driver's license number of the licensed driver to whom the vehicle was released pursuant to this subdivision shall be listed on the officer's copy of the notice to appear issued to the unlicensed driver. When a vehicle cannot be released, the vehicle shall be removed pursuant to subdivision (p) of Section 22651, whether a notice to appear has been issued or not."

Saturday, February 7, 2015

NHTSA: No evidence that marijuana use leads to higher risk of traffic accident, California DUI attorneys share

Washington A government study released late Friday found no evidence that marijuana use leads to a higher risk of getting into a traffic crash, California DUI lawyers are told.
But safety advocates believe it is still dangerous to drive after smoking significant amounts of marijuana, and the government plans more testing.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said this 20-month survey of drivers in 2013 and 2014 found that while drinking dramatically raises the chance of a crash, there was no evidence that marijuana use is statistically significant in boosting wreck rates.
The agency said the issue is of growing importance in the wake of marijuana being legalized in Colorado, Oregon, Alaska and Washington state for recreational use.
In Michigan, eight cities approved decriminalization measures last year for marijuana: Berkley, Huntington Woods, Mount Pleasant, Pleasant Ridge, Port Huron, Saginaw, Oak Park and Hazel Park.
The report's findings were based on two surveys. The National Roadside Survey, which collected information from volunteer drivers at 300 research checkpoints across the U.S., and a second study — the largest of its kind ever conducted — that assessed whether marijuana use by drivers is associated with greater risk of crashes. That study, in Virginia, gathered data over 20 months from more than 3,000 drivers who were in crashes, as well as a comparison group of 6,000 drivers who did not crash.
The percentage of drivers with evidence of marijuana in their system increased from 8.6 percent in 2007 to 12.6 percent in the study, NHTSA said
Marijuana users were about 25 percent more likely to be involved in a crash than drivers with no evidence of marijuana use. But that's because other factors — especially that more younger men are involved in crashes, NHTSA said — rather than marijuana use itself.
By comparing marijuana use among those in crashes and those who weren't, the safety agency said "other factors, such as age and gender, appear to account for the increased crash risk among marijuana users."
Former Acting NHTSA Administrator David Kelly said the study results shouldn't be interpreted as a flat declaration that driving after smoking pot use is safe. Further research is needed, NHTSA said, "before more definitive conclusions about drug use and crash risk can be reached."
"You can't say that driving while stoned is not a risk. We know it debilitates the ability to drive safely," he said.
The United States doesn't good a good job of testing for marijuana use among drivers, Kelley said. Police, he noted, often don't bother to test for marijuana if a driver already has tested positive for drunken driving.
Mason Tvert, director of communications for the Marijuana Policy Project in Denver, added that the group doesn't want people driving after significant marijuana use.
"Nobody should drive while impaired by any substance, and that's why there are laws on the books to address it. While the research is pretty clear that marijuana use is not remotely as problematic as alcohol when it comes to driving, it can cause impairment. We need to have laws that are grounded in science and punish only drivers who were actually impaired. It's worth noting that there is also research that has shown people who have used marijuana are more likely to recognize if they are impaired than those who have used alcohol," he said.
But he said police often go too far.
"Arresting hundreds of thousands of people for simply possessing marijuana will not do anything to prevent people who make the mistake of driving under the influence. We would never approach the problem of drunk driving by making it illegal for adults to drink responsibly. It's just as foolish to do that when it comes to adults who use marijuana responsibly," he said.
It's difficult to determine at what level marijuana use may impair driving, the government said, because — unlike with alcohol testing — there aren't precise levels of chemicals from marijuana proven to correlate with impairment.
Drugged drivers
Michigan had the 12th highest rate of drugged drivers in the country from 2006-09, says the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
While all states prohibit driving under the influence of drugs, there's significant variation in the minimum acceptable levels of marijuana or its traces in a driver's system.
Sixteen states, including Michigan, forbid any presence of prohibited drugs, while five others have specific limits for marijuana. In October, Gov. Rick Snyder signed legislation allowing police to conduct a roadside analysis for drugs, in addition to alcohol.
Mothers Against Drunk Driving has made drug use behind the wheel a bigger focus. MADD this year changed its mission statement to include "help fight drugged driving."
"MADD hopes to bring awareness to the growing threat of drugged driving on our roadways, much in the same way we have with drunk driving since our founding in 1980," the group says on its website.
"While the substances are different, the results are the same — needless deaths and injuries."
NHTSA is conducting additional studies to further understand the risk of driving after drug use, including the Washington State Roadside Survey, "which will assess risk in a state where marijuana has recently been legalized."
It also is on board with the National Institute on Drug Abuse for a simulator study to assess how drivers under the influence of drugs behave behind the wheel, the agency said. Ongoing research, it said, "will refine our understanding of when marijuana use by drivers" increases the effect it has on driving.
"Researchers have developed a deep body of knowledge about the link between drinking, driving and risk. We know drunk driving kills," added NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind.
"The combined message of these two surveys is that our work to understand and combat drunk driving is paying off, but that we have much to learn about how illegal drugs and prescription medicines affect highway safety — and that developing that knowledge is urgent, because more and more drivers have these drugs in their systems."
Weekend numbers fall
As marijuana use behind the wheel is rising, the incidence of driving on weekends after drinking has fallen sharply.
The study said the proportion of drunken drivers on the roads has fallen by 80 percent since 1973. The study found about 1.5 percent of weekend drivers had blood-alcohol concentrations equal to being legally intoxicated, 0.08 percent or above.
The proportion of drivers with any alcohol in their system declined by about 30 percent from 2007 to 2014.
Drivers with a breath alcohol level of 0.08 percent were about four times more likely to crash than sober drivers, NHTSA said, while drivers with an alcohol level of 0.15 percent were 12 times more likely to crash than sober drivers.

Friday, January 30, 2015

1 out of every 8 Colorado DUI cases involves marijuana, lawyers are told

Holy Smokes, Colorado!  1 in every 8 citations written by the Colorado State Patrol in 2014 for impaired driving or DUI involved suspected marijuana use, according the Denver Post's reference to new statistics from the agency, San Diego California DUI attorneys share.

The apx. "numbers are the first year-long data the state has ever released on stoned driving, and they add new context to an ongoing debate over whether marijuana legalization will make Colorado's roads less safe. But they also provide far from a conclusive answer to the question.
For 2014, The State Patrol reported that troopers issued 5,546 citations for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Of those, 674 — about 12.2 percent — involved suspected marijuana use, either alone or in combination with other intoxicants. For 354 of those citations — about 6.4 percent of the total, or one in every 16 — marijuana was believed to be the only substance involved.
The State Patrol did not provide statistics on the marijuana blood levels found in the cases or how often the citations led to convictions. The numbers also don't provide a complete picture on stoned driving enforcement in Colorado because they don't contain tallies from local police and sheriff's departments.
Still, state highway officials said they show the need to educate people that driving stoned is not OK.
"We won't be satisfied until everyone in Colorado takes driving high seriously, so the need for awareness and education is paramount," Amy Ford, a spokeswoman for the Colorado Department of Transportation said in a statement accompanying the new numbers' release.
CDOT last year spent $1 million on an ad campaign called "Drive High, Get a DUI." Even after the campaign, a CDOT study found that 21 percent of recreational marijuana consumers didn't know they could be cited for driving under the influence of pot.
Because DUI cases involving marijuana are not differentiated in court data, Colorado has long struggled to determine whether stoned driving is an increasing problem in the state. Last year was the first year the State Patrol began tracking marijuana DUIs. The agency now has 61 troopers who are trained as drug recognition experts."

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

San Diego County DUI Law Center's Attorney Rick Mueller announces these checkpoint locations Super Bowl Weekend

San Diego County DUI Law Center's Attorney Rick Mueller announces these checkpoint locations Super Bowl Weekend.

DUI/Driver's License checkpoint Planned this Weekend

The San Diego County Sheriff's Department, San Marcos Sheriff’s Station in conjunction with the Escondido Police Department, Carlsbad Police Department, California Highway Patrol, Cal-State San Marcos Police Department, Palomar College Police Department and San Diego County Probation Department, "AVOID the 8 on SR-78 ", will be conducting a DUI/Driver's License checkpoint on January 30, 2015 at an undisclosed location within the city limits between the hours of 6:30 p.m. to 2:30 a.m. Checkpoints are placed in locations that have the greatest opportunity for achieving drunk and drugged driving deterrence and provide the greatest safety for officers and the public.

The deterrent effect of DUI checkpoints is a proven resource in reducing the number of persons killed and injured in alcohol or drug involved crashes. Research shows that crashes involving an impaired driver can be reduced by up to 20 percent when well-publicized DUI checkpoints and proactive DUI patrols are conducted routinely.

The deterrent effect of DUI checkpoints is a proven resource in reducing the number of persons killed and injured in alcohol or drug involved crashes. Research shows that crashes involving an impaired driver can be reduced by up to 20 percent when well-publicized DUI checkpoints and proactive DUI patrols are conducted routinely.

In California, this deadly crime led to 774 deaths because someone failed to designate a sober driver

Monday, January 26, 2015

San Diego DUI Super Bowl Update by local attorneys

San Diego County DUI Law Center Super Bowl Update News Flash

There will be increased California DUI patrols by Sheriff's Deputies across San Diego county starting Sunday, February 1 at 3:00 p.m. all the way through 5:00 a.m. February 2, 2015, attorneys are told.

San Diego Police Department will have roadblocks.  CHP will patrol like crazy, San Diego DUI lawyers know.

San Diego California DUI Deputies will stage DUI Checkpoints between 8:00 p.m. and 3:00 a.m. in the following Sheriff's contract cities leading up to Super Bowl Sunday:

• January 30 – San Marcos
• January 31 – Encinitas

In 2014, more than 1,400 people were arrested for San Diego California DUI by the Sheriff's Department.

In 2013, San Diego California DUI Deputies arrested 1,888 people for DUI, Vehicle Code Sections a, b and e.

"There's no reason anyone should be drinking and driving," said Sheriff Bill Gore. "It's completely avoidable.

Never get behind the wheel after drinking.