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San Diego Criminal Defense Law Blog

NEW 2019 DUI LICENSE SUSPENSION LAWS

New 2019 DUI License suspension laws change previous license suspension laws.  There are usually 2 types of driver license suspensions which occurr in a 1st offense DUI case.  There is the 4 month pink sheet administrative suspension for individuals 21 and over with a .08 Blood Alcohol (BA) level or more  and the 6 month suspension triggered by a DUI conviction.   The pink sheet admin suspension required a one month "NO DRIVING" suspension before you could convert the 4 suspension to a 5 month restriction for work and DUI programs.   DUI cases with the arrest after January 1, 2019 are now allowed to get a restricted license right away without the 30 day no driving suspension period before applying.

DUI is legal if there is a "DUI Necessity Defense"

There is a DUI Necessity Defense making driving under the influence legal if there is a "Necessity" to drive under the circumstances to prevent significant bodily injury or evil to youself or others.  It is a valid defense to Driving Under the Influence and related sections and many other charges.  This defense must be looked at against the requirements of the Jury Instructions which define the "Necessity Defense".

DUI "Pink Sheet" Suspensions

DUI "pink sheet" suspensions are separate from the supensions resulting from DUI convictions.  The "pink sheet" is the Notice of Suspension and Temporary License that is given to you when you are arrested for an alcohol DUI.  Your license continues to be valid for 30 days if your license was valid at the time of the DUI arrest, until the supension takes effect.  The length of the suspension depends on the violation.   In order to keep your license longer, you must set a DMV Hearing to challenge the suspension by calling DMV within 10 days of your arrest and set either an "in person" or telephonic hearing.  

Scooter Driver Cited for DUI in San Diego

A scooter driver cited for DUI in San Diego after he was involved in an accident with a vehicle whe he croseed in front of a car exiting SR 163.  A sccoter with an electric motor is a "vehicle" for purposes of Driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.  California Vehicle Code (CVC) section 670 defines a ""vehicle" as a "device by which any person or property may be propelled, moved, or drawn upon a highway, excepting a device moved exclusively by human power or used exclusively upon staionary rails or tracks."  

San Diego DUI Arrests Are Down Due to Uber and Lyft

DUI arrests are down significantly in San Diego since ride share services of Uber and Lyft began.  In a study by the Moll Law Group, DUI arrests have fallen by 32% since 2012 when Uber and Lyft began service in San Diego.  There are still a significant number of DUI arrests each year, but Uber and Lyft have definitely had a beneficial impact on the number of cases.

Are DUI Checkpoints Constitutional?

DUI checkpoints, a.k.a. sobriety checkpoints, are handled on a state-by-state basis. Some jurisdictions allow them. Others do not. In other words, the constitutionality of DUI checkpoints is somewhat unsettled, at least on the national level.

So far, lawmakers (and voters) in individual states have decided for themselves.

Can the Police Unlock Your iPhone?

The answer: It depends (of course).

iPhones (and other types of smartphones) often have ways to keep unwanted eyes from prying. These methods range from passcodes to fingerprints. Apps themselves may have encryption, like some text messaging services, which purport to be free of prying eyes. Not all users keep their phones locked, or use these apps, but many do. And some of those who do might find themselves one day facing a police officer who wants access to their locked phone.

How Can a Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) Tell That You're Driving Under the Influence of Marijuana?

Drug recognition experts, or DREs, are police officers with training on recognizing the signs of a driver under the influence of a substance, be it marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamine, or prescription painkillers, among other substances.

Does "Battery" require injury?

Simple Misdemeanor Battery per California Penal Code 242 does not require injury.  Any rude or angry touching of another can be a battery even without injury.  The law protects individuals from any willful touching in a harmful or offensive manner, and which is not in done self defense.  Simple Assault per PC 240 requires someone to have the present ability to apply force and willfully act, not in self defense, in a way that a reasonable person would believe the probable result would be a battery.  Assault is more of a threatening and actual touching is not required for PC 240.

Drunk Driving Defense in Vista Courts and the DMV

Drunk Driving defense in Vista Courts and throughout California usually involve two different proceedings.  There is the DMV administrative suspension proceeding against in invidual's drivers license and the Criminal Court case.  Many people overlook the DMV administrative suspension proceedings and don't realize that the pink sheet notice of suspension and temporary license is separate from the arrest and criminal court proceedings.