Blog

CALL US FOR A FREE CONSULTATION

Call Us831-426-5800

Call Us831-566-4357

303 Potrero Street, Suite 30
Santa Cruz, CA 95060
Recent blog posts

Posted on in DUI

With just a few days left to the Memorial Day weekend, which also kicks off summer season, it's the right time to focus on the need for drivers to be extra cautious about driving during the holiday.

The Memorial Day Holiday sees large numbers of law-enforcement officers on the roads to pull over motorists they suspect of driving under the influence of alcohol. Your chances of being arrested for DUI or being pulled over are much higher during this holiday, as well as the rest of the summer season.

If you plan to celebrate the beginning of summer with friends, make sure that you stay sober. It is not always easy to tell after you have consumed a couple of alcoholic beverages that you are legally able to drive safely. If you have consumed more than a couple of alcoholic beverages, simply avoid driving, and hand over the keys to someone else.

...

Posted on in DUI

Alcohol is linked to as many as one-third of all teen car accident fatalities every year, and prom season is when many of those accidents take place. Drinking is illegal if you are below 21, but underage drinking is widespread on prom night.

Unfortunately, according to one study, as many as 90% of teenagers believe that their friends would drive while drunk on prom night. This indicates that these practices are extremely widespread.

Teenage drivers need to take precautions, and avoid driving under the influence of alcohol. Remember, prom night is an important night for you, but it is also when many teens are arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol. A DUI conviction could mean a permanent blot on your record. It could interfere with your ability to get into a prestigious college, and could have all kinds of other consequences for your education and employment prospects in life.

...

According to new research, if all cars came with alcohol testing devices that would silently test motorist blood alcohol concentration levels, it would significantly reduce the risk of DUI arrests and alcohol-related accident fatalities.

According to the study that was published recently in the American Journal of Public Health, the savings in terms of lives in car accidents, would be tremendous. The researchers believe that as many as 10,000 lives will be saved over a 15-year period, if all cars roll out of factories with these in-car alcohol testing devices installed.

The devices that were tested as part of the study are called DADSS, or the driver alcohol detection system for safety. These devices are unlike the breathalyzer devices that motorists are required to install in their car after certain types of DUI arrests. Those ignition interlock devices require motorists to breathe into the device, and detect the amount of alcohol on the person's death. The device will proceed to shut the ignition down if the alcohol limit is beyond a certain set limit.

...

Posted on in DUI

Your risks of a DUI arrest spike on St. Patrick's Day. You're likely to see more numbers of DUI sobriety checkpoints on Los Angeles roads, over the holiday. Learn how to avoid a DUI arrest.

The easiest way to avoid a DUI arrest is to stay sober, if you expect to drive. If that is not possible for you to do, designate someone to drive you home. Plan beforehand, and arrange for a taxi service to pick you up from the venue, at a specified time.

You are likely to come across more than a few DUI checkpoints in Los Angeles on St. Patrick's Day. DUI checkpoints are legal in the state of California. However, there are quite a few guidelines attached to the establishment of these DUI checkpoints. For one thing, the checkpoint must be publicly advertised. The pattern of pulling motorists over should be neutral. Officers at the checkpoint cannot simply choose to pull motorists over, because of their ethnicity, for example.

...

Investigations into the train accident near Los Angeles, which left more than 50 people injured, are now beginning to focus on the DUI history of the truck driver involved in the accident. He has several DUI convictions on his record.

The man, José Alejandro Sanchez-Ramirez apparently drove his truck onto the tracks, believing that it was the roadway, and later abandoned it. The train crashed into the pickup truck, and several of the cars derailed. More than 50 people were injured, and one of the engineers who sustained injuries in the accident, has since died.

Police found Sanchez-Ramirez more than a mile from the accident scene, walking and in distress. Prosecutors are waiting to file charges against him, and reports indicate that he has several previous DUI violations on his record. Tests have been conducted on him, but results are pending. It is not yet known whether drug or alcohol use were a factor in the crash.

...

Posted on in DUI

In those DUI cases in which a person is driving while drunk with a minor child below the age of 14, he is exposing himself to not just charges of driving under the influence of alcohol, but also felony or misdemeanor charges of child endangerment.

Under California law, it is illegal to drive under the influence of alcohol anyway. However, when you are breaking the law, and also have a minor in your car with you, the charges against you are aggravated. You are eligible for charges of child endangerment to be filed against you. You don't have to be involved in an alcohol-related car accident for these charges to be filed against you.

The law will not look at your intentions while driving under the influence of alcohol, or any of the excuses that you provide for driving with a minor in your car while intoxicated. It will not even consider the effects of the results of your intoxicated driving. California law will only look at whether you had a child below the age of 14 in your car at the time that you were driving under the influence.

...

In Florida, a DUI defense lawyer hit the headlines recently for his daring advise for motorists at DUI checkpoints.

The lawyer in South Florida distributed a number of flyers that simply encourage motorists, who find themselves at a checkpoint to refuse a DUI test, and keep their windows rolled up. The lawyer’s flyer distributed across the South Florida region, informs motorists that all they have to do when stopped by police at a DUI checkpoint is to keep their car windows rolled up, and hold up the flyer, so that police can read it.

The flyer also advises them to hold up their license, vehicle registration, and insurance documents to police at the window. It advises them to keep silent, and not speak at all. It also advises them to record all that happens on audio, or video.

...

Posted on in DUI

Taxi share service Uber is coming under criticism for its claims that cities that have seen an increase in the use of its ridesharing app have also seen a corresponding drop in the number of DUI arrests and accidents.

Recently, the ridesharing service published the results of a new study together with Mothers against Drunk Driving (MADD) in which it claimed that the rising popularity of Uber had led to a reduction in the number of drunk driving accidents, and even drunk driving arrests in states like California. However, critics are not so impressed. According to them, there is no clear connection that conclusively establishes a relationship between the popularity of the ridesharing service in certain cities and a reduction in DUI arrests or drunk driving accidents.

According to Uber, since the service launched in California, the number of drunk driving accidents has actually decreased by 60 accidents per month. Those statistics translate into 1,800 few accidents over the past one and half years alone. However, the company has no conclusive evidence to show that the use of its ridesharing service prevented so many of these accidents. In fact, Mothers against Drunk Driving, which co-authored the study that came up with those findings, says that there is no causation relationship between the drop in DUI accidents, and the increasing use of the app. In other words, there is no clear evidence that shows that cities where Uber is popular see fewer drunk driving accidents.

...

A Florida mother is in deep trouble after a DUI incident in which her children reported her behavior.

The woman was driving with her children and at least three other 11-year-old kids, when the children stopped the car, and ran out into a nearby restaurant. They told people in the restaurant that one of the children's mother was driving them under the influence of alcohol. Her driving scared them so much that they felt that they had to get help.

According to the children, the woman was very drunk and was swerving all over the road. She struck a pole, and that incident resulted in damage to the car. However, when they came to a stop outside the restaurant, the children jumped out of the car and ran in for help.

...

Lawmakers getting into trouble for DUI don't exactly make the news in California. However, DUI defense attorneys for one lawmaker who was recently arrested for driving under the influx of alcohol have called for charges to be dropped against him for a unique reason that was drafted by people riding in horse-drawn carriages.

They argue that the lawmaker is currently in the middle of a legislative session in the state, and therefore, should not be arrested for DUI at this stage.

According to the attorneys, charges against Kentucky’s Senator Brandon Smith must be dropped, because of a provision in the Kentucky Constitution that holds that a lawmaker cannot be arrested while the legislative session is in progress. Senator Smith was arrested on January 6, which also happens to be the day the 2015 session officially began.

...

Across the Southern California region including across Santa Ana and Los Angeles, law enforcement officers are gearing up to kick off the most intensive holiday DUI crackdown of the year. Several law-enforcement agencies in Southern California are participating in the effort to get drunk drivers off the street.

If you are driving under the influence of alcohol over the next few days, your chances of being arrested for DUI are the highest in the year. The special task force that has been designed to help crack down on intoxicated motorists is the Avoid DUI Task Force.

The message is clear - Drive Sober or Get Pulled over. The campaign is a no-tolerance campaign that is targeted at getting intoxicated motorists of the road. The counties of Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino, and Ventura are included this year in the task force's efforts.

...

Can you get drunk after eating a plate of beer-battered fish? That is the question that many Los Angeles DUI defense lawyers are asking, after a man in Wisconsin presented that as a defense for his DUI.

The man was pulled over by police officers, who then administered a breathalyzer test. The man registered below the .08 maximum permissible level, but since this wasn't his first DUI, he was charged just the same. The man apparently told police officers that he had eaten beer-battered fish just before he began driving, and that this accounted for the alcohol content in his blood. He denied having consumed any alcohol beverages.

To cook up a plate of beer-battered fish, the seafood is dipped in batter that includes beer, and deep-fried. Cooking removes the alcohol from the food. The alcohol evaporates in the cooking process, and although it leaves behind the flavor of alcohol, it does not leave behind alcohol content that would be sufficient to actually intoxicate a person.

...

Underage drinking is pervasive in colleges across the United States, and it doesn't help parents to bury their head in the sand, and pretend that the problem does not exist. For any parent to believe that their child is completely immune from the dangers that emerge when an inexperienced or novice driver is given access to alcohol, is foolish.

As a responsible parent, you must initiate conversations about the dangers of alcohol use with your child. Those discussions must begin not when your child has been involved in an alcohol-related accident, or has been arrested for DUI, but must begin when your child enters high school, or at the very least, when he leaves home for college.

Some teenagers may be at a higher risk of alcohol abuse, underage DUI and other destructive behaviors involving alcohol. For instance, children who have a family history of parental alcohol abuse, a history of child abuse, behavior problems, mental health problems, discipline problems in school, or have close friends also use alcohol or abuse drugs, are much more likely to drink alcohol.

...

Arizona's medical marijuana laws which allow persons to access marijuana for medicinal purposes, does not give these cardholders immunity from prosecution for DUI charges. An Arizona court recently delivered a ruling in a case involving a man who was arrested for DUI after driving a car the car under the influence of pot. The man was a medicinal marijuana cardholder, and although he was found not guilty of driving while impaired, the court did find that he was guilty of driving with pot in his system.

According to the ruling, persons who are using marijuana and have traces of the drug in their system, can be charged with and convicted of DUI. It's an interesting ruling, and one that is bound to be watched in states like California that also have medical marijuana laws in place.

The ruling is also interesting to Los Angeles DUI lawyers because it comes at a time when a number of states are moving to ease restrictions on access to marijuana. Colorado and Washington recently became the first states to allow the sale of marijuana for recreational purposes. As restrictions on marijuana continue to ease, courts continue to deliver conflicting messages, ruling that while access to marijuana is easier, people who have traces of the drug in their system can actually be prosecuted for DUI.

...

An analysis of data from the California Department Of Motor Vehicles from 2012 found that employees at the DMV either suspended or revoked the licenses in at least 135 DUI cases. In all these cases, the persons arrested had never been charged with any DUI-related crime, nor had their criminal cases dismissed because of lack of evidence.

Los Angeles DUI lawyers have found that DMV employees are often allowed to act as a prosecutor and judge, when they decide whether to revoke or suspend licenses. Attorneys have always believed that allowing a single employee to decide on a matter like this amounts to a violation of an individual's constitutional rights. Now, a lawsuit that has been filed by a group of attorneys against the California Department Of Motor Vehicles, targets these arbitrary powers that are granted to employees at the agency.

The lawsuit claims that allowing employees to act as both the prosecutor and judge about which person’s licenses will be suspended or revoked, is a violation of their rights. At the California Department Of Motor Vehicles, a single employee is given the task of advocating for the DMV's interests, and making the decision in administrative proceedings. That makes it a clear conflict of interest, and means the system is tilted against drivers in the state of California who have been arrested for DUI.

...

Teens, who are exposed to brand-specific alcohol advertising on television, are much more likely to drink. Those who already drink illegally are likely to drink even more, when they view such commercials. Those are the results of a new study that was released by researchers at the Center on Alcohol Marketing and Youth at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health recently.

The researchers were specifically looking at whether brand-specific alcohol ads that air during television shows specifically increase consumption of these brands. They found that there was definitely an association between exposure to specific ads during television shows an increased consumption. Ad exposure over 20 television shows was monitored, and the researchers looked at whether the ads had an impact on teen drinking rates. They found from their study of more than 1000 people, that there was a significant connection between exposure to a brand in advertisements on television, and actual consumption of the beverage.

Teenagers are specifically targeted by the alcohol industry, even though people below the age of 21 are not allowed to possess or drink alcohol. The legally permissible drinking age in California is 21 as in the rest of the country.

...

Under the proposal by New York Democrat Congresswoman Nita M. Lowey, states that fail to enact the law by the deadline of October 1, mandating all DUI offenders to have these devices installed in their vehicles, would suffer a cut in their highway transportation funding.

Motorists in four California counties-Los Angeles, Sacramento, Almeida and Tulare - are already familiar with a program like this. Under the pilot program, which was kicked off in 2010, even an offender who is convicted of a first-time DUI, is required to install certified ignition interlock devices in each vehicle that he owns or operates.

An ignition interlock device is a device that is connected to the ignition of the car. The device takes a breath sample from a person before he begins driving. It detects the alcohol content in the breath, and if it detects alcohol content above a predetermined limit, it will shut down the ignition, and the engine will not start. As the person drives, the device will continue to ask for samples to reduce the risk that the driver will consume alcohol as he is driving.

...

Posted on in DUI

That seems to be confirmed by statistics in Los Angeles and other cities, where there has been a drop in the number of DUI offenses recorded since Uber arrived on the scene. According to data involving DUI citations from the California Highway Patrol, the number of DUI arrests actually peaked just before the release of the Uber app in April 2012. After the app was introduced, the number of DUI arrests began to drop even as other rideshare apps like Lyft arrived on the scene. However, police are not as quick to credit Uber for that drop in DUI arrests.

The Los Angeles Police Department however does admit that there has been a slight decrease in the number of DUI accidents between 2013 and 2014. The department also admits that there is no way to confirm that a decrease in the number of DUI accidents is in any way linked to the increasing use of Uber. The Los Angeles Police Department would like to believe that there have been other factors that have contributed to a drop in DUI arrests, and DUI crashes like increased awareness and education campaigns targeting drunk driving.

Uber hasn't been around that long to really tell whether the app has contributed to a decrease in the number of DUI arrests. However, California DUI lawyers would highly recommend that if you are concerned about driving home after having had a few alcoholic beverages, call a cab.

The Supreme Court of the United States Of America recently decided not to take up the appeal of a DUI decision, that had been handed by a California court.

The decision was handed down in Vangelder versus California, and the crux of the defense was the breath test performed just before the arrest. Vangelder had been arrested for DUI after a breath test. At the trial, attorneys for the defendant brought in an expert, who said that testing machines were unreliable because they tended to measure the alcohol content in the wrong part of the breath. They didn't measure the alcohol content in the deeper part of the air, which is closer to the bloodstream, and therefore, readings from the testing machines were unreliable.

The defense however didn't work, and the man was convicted. The man appealed, and the California State Court ruled against him again. When the matter went to the Supreme Court of the United States Of America, the Court decided to not take up the appeal at all.

...

A Riverside woman, who seems to have run over her father in a tragic accident while she was under the influence of alcohol, has been arrested.

According to police, the woman has been arrested on suspicion of DUI after the accident in which she struck her father with her car, while under the influence of alcohol. The father was trying to convince her not to drive while drunk. The woman has been drinking at home, and arguing with family members. She seems to have rushed outside her home, and tried to drive off in her car. Her father tried to persuade her not to drive since she had been drinking. However, she refused to listen to him, and when he tried to prevent her from driving off by standing in the driveway, she struck him as she was backing out of the garage.

The father was rushed to the hospital where he later died. The woman was arrested on suspicion of DUI, and after investigation, could actually face more charges.

...
Back to Top