Driving under the Influence attracts serious penalties in Denver and it is in your best interests to know exactly what you should do to avoid them. It is equally important for you to understand how the legal system works in these cases and what you should expect when you are asked to pull over under suspicion of DUI. Here, Attorney Richard B. Huttner, P. C. explains the specifics of the process.
DUI and DUID- What’s the difference?
The very first thing to know is that the DUI charge may be brought against you even if you are NOT driving under the influence of alcohol. The policeman stopping your vehicle can charge you with a DUID or driving while under the influence of drugs if your driving has been erratic or if he has other cause to believe that you are not fit to be behind the wheel. Establishing that you are medically prescribed to take the drugs is not a viable defense in such cases. If you have been charged with a DUID case, although you have a medical prescription and doctor’s instructions to ingest the drugs, you need to call in expert DUI defense attorney Richard B. Huttner immediately to build a strong case in your favor.
The breathalyzer test – to agree or refuse?
The first thing the policeman may do to stop you is to ask you to take the breathalyzer test. Keep in mind, that these tests are NOT admissible as evidence in court. You can REFUSE to take this test when the policeman asks you to. However, the policeman may ask you to undergo a more advanced version of this test that is administered at hospitals if he is convinced that your driving ability is severely impaired. Refusing to take this test too results in the loss of your license for one year. In addition, you lose points on your license too. The breathalyzer test, blood tests, and other tests done to determine if you are driving under the influence are admissible in court if these are carried out in a hospital.
The DUI Process
In Denver, the first step is the arrest or citation. Even if the officer decides not to make an arrest on the spot, he may issue a citation. If you refuse to take the Breathalyzer test, you have a period of 7 days within which you can request an Express Consent Hearing. Make sure you appear in court on the arraignment date allocated to you since failure to be present can result in a warrant in your name. The next stage involves the pre-trial conferences where you discuss the case or plea offers with the district attorney. Next comes the stage where the arguments are presented to the judge and he determines if any evidence is to be suppressed. Keep in mind, the decision of the judge may favor the prosecution at this stage.
The jury trial is the next stage when your case is heard by six jury members. If the case has not been dismissed, it concludes with the sentencing by the judge based on all the factors presented during the arguments stage and on the jury’s recommendations.