Suspected of DUI? What to do if you’re pulled over

DUI Stop In Denver

What if you’re pulled over and the police suspect you have been driving under the influence (DUI). If you get pulled over, the police officer will ask for your license, proof of insurance and registration. The officer may then begin to ask you questions like how many drinks have you had tonight? The second that officer starts with the questions you know it is on.

You have options about how this will work out and the choices you make in the next few minutes will determine your immediate future.

DUI QUESTIONING AND YOUR RIGHTS

You have a Constitutional Right under the 5th Amendment to remain silent. This is a protection against incriminating yourself. If asked about the number of drinks you had, you do not have to answer. If you are worried that your speech may sound slurred, the officer can and will use that against you in court. It may be in your best interest to state that you wish to not answer their questions.

The police are trained to gather as much evidence against you during their questioning. The police are making sensory notes regarding the odor of alcohol, the sound of slurred speech, unsteady hand movement, seeing bloodshot and watery eyes.The more evidence against you, the harder the case is to beat. Since you have a right to not answer questions which is guaranteed by the Constitution, your silence will not be held against you in court.

DUI FIELD SOBRIETY TESTS

The police are trained to gather more evidence against you in the form of tests designed to determine your level of balance and coordination. The officer will tell you these tests are voluntary but give you little time to say you don’t want to do the field sobriety tests. The fact is you do not have to do this subjective testing. Even if you are sober, some of these test results can be used against you. It is in your interest to decline the field sobriety testing as it will most certainly be construed against you.

BREATHALYZER AND BLOOD TESTS

Because you have a driver’s license, you are required to submit to Breathalyzers and other chemical testing. Other Chemical Tests can be requested like a Blood or Urine Tests. Blood tests are much more accurate than breathalyzer tests. A common way to gather evidence against you is for the officer to ask you to submit to a breathalyzer test.

This is a big choice to make.

You either blow and hope for the best or refuse the test. The breathalyzer’s results have not always been accurate. The reliability of reading an accurate level of intoxication is also suspect. No matter if the breathalyzer is accurate or not, numbers don’t lie.

If you blow over the legal limit, your case becomes harder but not impossible to beat. There is that much more evidence that must be addressed.

REFUSING A CHEMICAL TEST

If you refuse a chemical test, then there is a good chance you will have your license suspended for 1 year in most states, Colorado included. You might think that there is an upside to not submitting to testing thinking that you will most likely avoid the more severe penalties of being convicted of a DUI. You should understand that you can refuse the roadside sobriety tests and the blood/breath tests but refusing the blood/breath tests makes you lose your license for a year and at trial a jury is told about the requirement to take the test and refusing can be used as consciousness of guilt. You could submit to a blood test, which gives you a chance to keep your license longer.

CRIMINAL DEFENSE DUI ATTORNEY

If you end up getting charged with a DUI, it is very important to get in touch with a DUI Attorney. It is also helpful to understand Colorado DUI Law and DUI Penalties, click here to the Colorado Criminal Law PDF Factsheet page to learn more.

GET IMMEDIATE HELP

Obtaining the experience of a well established Criminal Defense Attorney specializing in DUI cases is important because sometimes your lawyer can get evidence suppressed. Defense lawyers are versed in tactics employed by the police and state attorneys and how to defend against those tactics. Denver DUI Attorney Richard B. Huttner is a founding member of the National College of DUI Defense and is an expert in DUI cases. Contact him for a free consultation and for representation on your DUI defense case.

Sex Offender Sentencing

Sentencing Guidelines For Sex Offenders In Colorado

Colorado Sentencing guidelines for sex offenders are very strict and leave Judges little discretion. In some circumstances, a sex assault conviction requires prison for an indeterminate amount of time–which could mean the rest of your natural life. The indeterminate sentencing is mandatory for some crimes and for some crimes it is discretionary, meaning if a judge sentences a person to prison it is indeterminate versus a probation sentence.

Available Options

In a case in Boulder, a young man was convicted of sex assault and the Judge was given two options. The prison was not mandatory but any prison would be an indeterminate sentence to the department of corrections which could mean a life sentence. The individual was eligible for probation. Now probation on a felony can include up to two years in work release or 90 days of jail without work release as a condition of probation.

The Outcry Against Sentencing

There is a huge outcry against the sentence. The sentencing statute created the outcry because of the limitations on the Judge. The Judge did not have the power to sentence the individual to a definite term in prison. The Judge was left with indeterminate which means the Parole Board will release you when you are no longer a threat or Probation.

Seriousness Of Sex Offenses

Sex offenses are the most serious crime outside of homicide. The sentencing is harsh. The public outcry can be crushing. The legislature thought it would take the power away from the Judges in deciding how long a sex offender should serve in prison. Instead, it has left Judges with the unenviable task of deciding if an individual deserves a potential life sentence or years and years of probation with a lesser amount of jail.

Management Of Sex Offenders In Colorado

What Crimes Form The Sex Offender Designation?

Under Colorado Law: 6-11.7-102(2)(a) C.R.S. any individual that has been convicted or adjudicated for the following offenses is considered a sex offender:

  • Committing any sex-related offenses
  • A previous conviction for sex offenses or a history of the latter in or out of state
  • Any current or previous conviction in the state whose basis involved a sexual offense
  • Any juvenile who commits a sexual offense is also designated as a Sex Offender

Sources: Colorado.gov

If you are charged with a sex offense. Seek experienced Legal Counsel.

Where You Charged With A Marijuana DUI?

Marijuana Possession in Colorado

As of 2014, in the state of Colorado, any resident that is 21 years of age or older has the ability to buy up to an ounce of marijuana at a time.  The latter is meant for recreational uses. Homeowners can also possess up to 6 plants in their residence so long as they are licensed and have approval and meet all of the necessary prerequisites and requirements. If you are traveling through Colorado, you are only allowed to purchase up to 7 grams for recreational use.

Marijuana Is Legal And Still Subject To DUI Enforcement

It is critical to note that while there are some legalities covering your right to possess certain quantities of Marijuana in the state of Colorado, you are still subject to DUI Charges should you be found to be driving under the influence. Alcohol is also legal, however, driving under the influence of alcohol is dangerous, puts your life and other lives at risk and the same is to be said of those driving while impaired under the influence of marijuana.

What’s The Law On Marijuana’s Legal Limit?

The state of Colorado is clear that 5 nonograms of active THC in your body constitute an affirmative charge for a DUI.  Regardless of the amount of THC in your body, law enforcement will gauge your impairment on visual observation, therefore, whether you have 2 or 5 nanograms or more, will not be readily assessable on the site of your DUI. If an impairment is observed, you will likely be arrested.

Marijuana DUI Defense

If you are a regular recreational user of Marijuana, you may have been keeping up with the news and the possible changes in the DUI laws when it comes to Marijuana.  As of yet, no changes have been made to raise the legal limit. As it stands, your defense attorney will try to argue that there is not enough scientific evidence to show that you were impaired while driving. It is important that you get an experienced DUI Defense attorney to fight for your rights.  A DUI Conviction can mean license suspension or revocation as well as fines and jail time.

If you’re looking at DUI charges in Denver as a result of your recreational marijuana use, You need to s Attorney Richard B. Huttner has several years of experience in marijuana DUI defense in Denver and can help you minimize your fines.

What You Need To Know About Colorado DUI’s

Driving Under The Influence In Colorado

Driving under the influence in the state of Colorado is a very serious crime. You may very well face serious fines and penalties and it is always best to be prepared in the event that you face DUI Charges in Denver.

Let’s take a look at what happens if you are pulled over and charged with a DUI in Denver Colorado.

What is the difference between a DUI and a DUID

First things first; a DUI or Driving Under The Influence charge can be waged against you whether or not you are physically driving under the influence of alcohol or not.  In the case of a DUID, law enforcement is free to stop you and charge you for a DUID if you have been operating a motor vehicle under the influence of drugs. If you are pulled over under the suspicion of driving under the influence or of drugs, law enforcement may elect to administer any number of sobriety testing.

Field Sobriety Testing (Breathalyzer)

If an officer suspects that you are under the influence, one of the first things that he may do is ask you to submit to a field sobriety test.  The first of the latter may be a breathalyzer test. Most people ask if whether or not they really have to submit to a breathalyzer test and the short answer is no.  Not taking a breathalyzer test, while it is your right to decline such a test, may result in more server consequences such as a license suspension. Additionally, you may end up losing points on your drivers’ license.

What Next?

If an officer in Denver has pulled you over and charged you with a DUI, you need to speak to a DUI Criminal Defense Attorney as soon as possible as you will need to begin preparing your defense strategy. There will be some initial stages involving pre-trial conferences to discuss the case or plea with the assigned district attorney. Later your attorney will have the opportunity to argue your case in front of a judge.  Having an experienced and aggressive criminal defense attorney often makes the difference when you are seeking the best possible outcome. Call Richard Huttner today to learn more about your options and rights.

Denver DUI Arrest

Were you pulled over under the suspicion of driving under the influence?

Whether you were on your way home from an event or on your way to another location, Point (A) and Point (B) became irrelevant once you were pulled over.  Chances are that you failed one or more sobriety tests.  Regardless of which law enforcement agency was involved and regardless of  the city or county that the incident took place in, you were likely arrested by the agency in question and booked.  Once booked, you were likely offered the option to take either a breathalyzer test or a blood test.

Refusing Testing

If you chose not to take part in a chemical test, that was your right to do so, however, Colorado is an Implied Consent state. If you opted out of taking a blood test or a breath test, while you can refuse, you will do so that the risk of an automatic license suspension.  Keep in mind that the latter relates to a first offense.  If this is your second or third go-round, you can add a year onto each additional offense losing your license for up to two years for your second refusal and three years for your third.

Fines, Penalties and Incarceration

As mentioned, a DUI is a serious offense, even a first offense can garner jail time in addition to the myriad of fines and penalties so it is important to understand your rights and obligations under the law.  The most important step to take is to speak with a Denver Criminal Defense Attorney at your earliest convenience.

First Offense: Up to one year in jail, up to $1000 in fines as well as Public Service.

Consecutive Offenses: Up to a year in Jail, up to $1500 in fines, 100’s of hours in Public Service.

Get Help Today

When it comes to your future and quality of life, your ability to drive plays an important role in your day-to-day abilities and activities. Protect yourself and speak to a qualified Criminal Defense & DUI Lawyer today. Call Richard Huttner to learn more about how he can help.

 

 

What Can I Do About An Arrest Warrant?

First Things First

People often assume that a warrant is not as bad as it sounds, nothing could be further from the truth.  It is vital that you not confuse a warrant for a piece of paper with legal suggestions. A warrant is issued by a judge on behalf of the state of Colorado. If that is not enough to trigger how serious the warrant is; let’s put it into perspective, that same warrant that a judge issued–also orders that any police officer can place you under arrest and book you into police custody.

Why Do I Have A Warrant Out For My Arrest?

A warrant can only be issued if a judge finds that the information provided was credible enough to meet the standard of probable cause in Colorado.  This means that another party or parties have provided information that was, at first check, found likely to be true and based in fact. At that point, the judge made the decision that you were most likely involved in the criminal matter in which your pending arrest accuses you of.  You may not even understand what you are being accused of yet, there may even be a misunderstanding, however, when it comes to an outstanding arrest warrant, it is best to retain assitance and move through the process quickly so as not to have this warrant disrupt other aspects of your life when you least expect it.

Don’t Wait, Get Ahead Of Your Arrest Warrant

It may seem easier to keep putting it off, but handling your warrant as early on as possible is the secure way to proceed.  You will want to speak with an experienced Denver Criminal Defense Lawyer who can walk you through the necessary steps to ensure that you understand both your rights and your obligations.

 

 

Do Accused Sexual Offenders Face A Lifelong Stigma?

In addition to the criminal consequences you could face for any kind of sexual charge, you should also be aware of the social effects of being accused of this crime. Taking quick action to protect your reputation is very important.

What to Do After Being Accused of a Sex Crime in Colorado

Anyone who has been accused of a sexual crime in the state of Colorado or elsewhere could potentially face a lifelong stigma and judgment from other people. Even just being accused of a sexual crime can carry significant problems and consequences. This is why it is so important to identify a Denver sex crimes attorney immediately.

Individuals who are convicted of sex crimes typically face more than just possible prison time. In fact, even after serving their time and being released, plenty of these offenders will find their names in state and national directories and bearing the label of sex offenders for anyone to see.

Will My Reputation Be Affected?

Even if you are ultimately acquitted of the criminal charges, the social cost of a sex crime can be high. This is why it is so important to identify an experienced Denver criminal defense attorney immediately. A strong defense is, in fact, an accused sex offender’s only option for paving a path to clearing their own name. There are many different types of scenarios that could eventually lead to allegations of criminal sexual conduct, and furthermore, there are many different aspects that must be considered in every case.

Get Help Today

A knowledgeable criminal defense attorney will have the necessary awareness and strategy to help handle these cases with care and compassion. You deserve to have a criminal defense attorney who cares about your future and the best way to approach the management of your case. You have enough to think about in the wake of being accused of violating a sexual crime in the state of Colorado. The sooner that you can act by retaining a criminal defense attorney who is familiar with sex crimes, the easier it will be for you to move forward with your future and hopefully put this chapter behind you.

How Does the Sex Offender Registry Work?

How Does the Sex Offender Registry Work?

Have you been accused of a crime in which you might be required to list with the Colorado sex offender registry? It’s important to understand what this means and the possible consequences. One of the most common concerns presented by someone accused of a sex crime is what to do if the sex offender registry is required.

This means that your information could show up in a neighborhood map when people are trying to find out if a sex offender lives or works near them.

If you plead no contest or guilty to a sex crime or are found guilty of a sex crime, you’ll be required to register as a sex offender and must regularly provide your personal details to the county sheriff or local chief of police in all jurisdictions where you reside, whether or not this is in Colorado.

Felony Sex Offenses

If you were convicted of a felony sex offense and were tried as an adult and were over 18 at the time, your information could be listed on the Colorado Bureau of Investigation’s Felony Sex Offender Registry. If you were convicted in Colorado on or after 1991 for an unlawful sexual offense, or were convicted in another state which would have constituted an unlawful sex offense in Colorado, if you were released after 1991 after having served a sentence for an unlawful sexual offense or if you were convicted after July 1994 for sexual assault, unlawful sexual contact, sexual assault in the first or second degree or against a child, aggravated incest or incest trafficking in children, pandering of a child, procurement of a child, keeping a place of child prostitution, pimping of a child, indecent exposure, wholesale promotion of obscenity to a minor, class four felony internet luring of a child or many other types of Colorado sex offenses, you need to be prepared to schedule a consultation with an experienced Colorado criminal defense attorney.

Get Help Today

Your criminal defense attorney in Colorado should be thoroughly experienced in managing sex offenses so that you know all of the potential consequences that might apply in addition to having to be listed on the registry.     

 

What Is the Distinction Between Misdemeanor and Felony Sex Crimes in Colorado?

How serious are Sex Crime charges in Colorado?

Have you already been charged with a sex crime in the state of Colorado and are curious about how serious of a situation this is? The first step is identifying whether or not you have been accused of misdemeanor or felony sex charges in Colorado.

The sooner you hire a lawyer, the more you will understand about any misdemeanor charges. If you are facing more than one charge at a time, your lawyer can give you an honest assessment of what you’re looking at in developing a strategy to defend yourself.

How Does Colorado Treat Misdemeanors?

Most misdemeanor sex crimes in Colorado are classified as M1. These are Class 1 misdemeanors and are the most severe misdemeanor that you can be charged with. Being convicted of a Class 1 misdemeanor has long-lasting penalties and consequences. Someone who has been convicted of a Class 1 misdemeanor is facing up to $5000 in fines, as long as two years in county jail and the possibility of jail and probation. This is in addition to any other costs or embarrassments that you may encounter when being accused of a sex crime. Some of the two most common misdemeanor sex crimes facing offenders in Colorado include indecent exposure and misdemeanor unlawful sexual conduct.

Classes of Felonies

Although there are other misdemeanor sex crimes in this category, there are not charged as frequently as these two. Felony sex crimes, however, come in a broad variety of life-changing formats and consequences. These can be charged as high as a Class 2 felony sex crime or as low as Class 6 felony sex crime.

Class 5 and 6 sex felonies are those considered determinate sex crimes which means that they do not carry lifelong consequences. Other more serious sex crime offenses, however, include sexual assault and sexual assault on a child, which do carry lifelong consequences for someone who has been convicted. Any felony sex offense in Colorado, whether determinate or indeterminate, carries requirements like felony sex offender probation, loss of your freedoms and lifetime sex offender registration. Take your situation seriously be retaining a knowledgeable Colorado criminal defense lawyer.