Military diversion includes DUI offenses now that the legislature has passed and the Governor signed legislation stating that misdemeanor DUI cases, VC 23152 violations, are included as divertable offenses per Penal Code 1001.80. Appellate Courts in California were split on whether or not DUI cases were included because of an old statute prohibiting diversion in DUI cases. The California Supreme Court was to decide in October, but since the legislature has clarified the diversion statute, the matter is resolved.
Drug DUI cases are treated a little different than alcohol cases. If you are arrested for a "Drug DUI" and there is no alcohol, the law enforcement officer should not take your California licenase at the time of arrest nor should they issue a pink sheet suspension notice and 30 day temporary license pending a suspension. That proceedure is limited to alcohol violations, however, if there is a conviction for a Drug DUI, then there is a suspension the same as there would be for an alcohol DUI.
It is only a felony DUI with an accident in Vista Courts and throughout California if the accident was caused by the DUI driver and another person is injured or killed. If it is an accident with no one else injured other than the DUI driver, then it is still a misdemeanor. An accident, however can cause increased penalties even as a misdemeanor that are greater than a DUI without an accident.
You read the DUI breath test strip from the top down. That strip along with the precautionary checklist are important to understand the breath test result and whether the machine was working properly. The DUI breath test strip is not generated from the portable field PAS breath test, but comes from the official testing equipment at the jail, police department, or can be in the field with a DUI Checkpoint.
DUI breath tests are legal without a warrant in Vista and throught the United States. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that a breath test is minimally intrusive and needed in DUI cases, therefore it is not an illegal search and seizure. However, blood tests are much more intrusive and require a warrant if a person refuses to take a blood test. If there are exigent circumstances a warrant may not be required. That depends on the individual case, like if there is difficulty in getting a warrant in a timely manner because of other circumstances like medical treatment, combative defendant or some other basis.
The DUI pink sheet suspension notice you get when you are arrested is also a temporary license for 30 days if your license was valid at the time of the stop. It is extremely important that you read pink sheet. It tells you that a suspesnion of your drivers license by DMV will take effect in 30 days from your arrest, regardless whether you have been to Court or convicted. This suspension is in addition to any suspension arising from a conviction for DUI and the length of the suspension depends on the reason for the suspension and prior DUI history.
Maximum DUI enforcement is in effect during the Holiday Season. This means much greater law enforcement presence on the highways which results in increased stops and DUI arrests. Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years holidays are the "Black" Fridays of DUI arrests. Certainly during the 3 or 4 days over those holidays, there are more officers on the road for traffic enforcement, especially DUIs, than at any other time except maybe Super Bowl, Memorial Day, 4th of July and Labor Day.
A first DUI sentence can include jail time, but usually it can be avoided. Technically, the DUI sentence can include zero to 6 months of jail, but realistically actual custody is rare with a first offense. There are alternatives to custody often used in a first DUI sentence like public work (Cal Trans trash pick up) in lieu of custody or possibly volunteer work if you are elderly or have a medical condition that would prohibit public work. Sometimes cases can be resolved with probation just fines and a DUI program, no work or jail. There are many factors to be considered and utuilized to try to avoid public work as well as custody and get lesser charges or penalties.
A DUI refusal hurts a client's case more than it helps in most cases. When an individual is stopped or contacted and there is a reasonable suspicion that they are driving under the influence, they will be asked to take a blood or breath test for alcohol or drugs. Refusal to take the official test can result in loss of license for at least a year or more by DMV depending on whether there are priors. Even if a person refuses, the officers can get a telephonic warrant to draw blood against the defendants will, and there are times when a warrant may not even be necessary. Then you end up with a blood result in addition to all the negatives of a DUI refusal by DMV and the Court.
A DUI with injury is very serious. It is a felony which carries the potential of a state prison sentence depending on the facts of the case. It can be a "strike" under the California 3 strikes law if there is great bodily injury. Great bodily injury can make it a strike, add 3 years in state prison and result in a defendant serving 85% of the sentence. If there is a death of another person as a result of the accident, then the case can be charged as a manslaugther or 2nd degree murder charge.