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January 2015 Archives

Is the DUI Field Breath Test admissible in Vista Courts?

Generally the DUI field breath test or P.A.S. (Preliminary Alcohol Screening) test is admissible in Vista and throughout California absent any foundational errors in the procedures and calibration. The PAS test is administered usually in the field at the "stop" by a police officer. The DUI field breath test is not as reliable as other types of alcohol tests, and the jury may be so instructed if the case goes to trial.

When does a DUI License suspension start?

There are two possible license suspensions with a DUI arrest.   One is upon conviction and one is a DMV suspension triggered by being .08 blood alcohol level (BA) or more at the time of driving.  This DMV  DUI license suspension can be delayed or in some cases avoided if a DMV hearing is set.  These suspensions can start 30 days after a DUI arrest if you were a .08 blood alcohol (BA) level or more, 21 or more years old with a valid license at the time of the stop and you failed to set up a DMV hearing.  The officer should have given you a pink sheet suspension notice/temporary license.  It will also start 30 days later if you are under 21 years old, or on probation for DUI, or you refused the blood test and failed to set up a DMV hearing, then there is a one year suspension.  Additionally, even if your license was not taken from you or you were not given a suspension notice and temporary license, a conviction for DUI also will trigger a seperate suspension. These  suspensions can be converted in most cases to a restricted license for work, programs etc. after 30 days of suspension.

How does PC 1170.18 (Prop 47) help me clean up my record?

California (Penal Code) PC 1170.18 (Prop 47) not only reduces many pending drug and theft cases to misdemeanors, but also allows the reduction of prior convictions for these offenses to be to misdemeanors.  Before this new code section passed, many drug charges were non-reducible to misdemeanors, particularly H&S 11350 (possession for personal use of heroin, crack, cocaine etc) now you can have them reduced to misdemeanors.  Also other theft related charges, under $950 in value, including burglary (non-residential), receiving stolen property, NSF checks, forgery, and petty theft with priors are all reducible to misdemeanors.