Darien DUI Lawyer
An individual could be charged with a DUI in two different ways. One way is to operate a motor vehicle with a blood-alcohol content of 0.08 or higher, and the other is to operate a motor vehicle generally under the influence of intoxicating drugs or liquor.
If you have been charged with drunk driving, it is imperative that you consult with an experienced Darien DUI lawyer immediately to begin mounting a defense to help lessen or dismiss any penalties associated with your charge.
Severity of Drunk Driving Charges
Prosecuting DUI cases is something that law enforcement makes a priority in both Darien with the town police, and with the local court. To properly defend against such a DUI charge, it is critical to contact an attorney in Darien.
DUI is one of the most common crimes in this area. In Darien, there are not many major violent crimes, so this is something that the police have been able to target. They also have chosen to focus on it because they want to avoid people drunk driving on the streets. It is considered a matter of public safety for the society in general. DUI cases are taken and handled in Stamford Superior Court. The police make sure they do their own investigation and write it in their report so they can give the court everything they need to be able to prosecute the charge.
There are a lot of procedures that the police officers and prosecutors must follow during a DUI case. There is specific training the officers must go through for field sobriety tests, and for any either on-site or in-department breathalyzer tests or blood draws.
There are many small rules that police officers need to follow, and they are usually trained pretty heavily in those roles, but there is a lot of opportunity for a lawyer to look and see whether those rules were followed. Simply someone that has experience with these courts and these police officers that could look and scrutinize the police reports and make sure everything was done in a constitutionally proper way, that all the rules were followed, and see if there is anything that they can challenge or suppress to help get a better offer and maybe even help avoid a felony.
What are DUI Checkpoints?
Drunk driving laws are enforced very heavily, often through the use of checkpoints set up by law enforcement. There are also police officers that monitor local bars and restaurants at night. DUI checkpoints are commonly outside of bars and restaurants. Darien has a lot of back roads and many small restaurants and bars hidden there, so the police often wait to see if someone comes out of one of those bars and commits an infraction. This is something like crossing the yellow line, forgetting to put their headlights on, or something like that to use as an opportunity to pull the individual over.
Negotiating with the prosecutor is something that the Department of Motor Vehicles handles. If there is going to be a mandate for an ignition interlock device or, for short, an IID in Connecticut, that mandate, in most cases, comes from the DMV and not from the prosecutor.
Felony Drunk Driving Offenses
If a person has a current DUI conviction and then are charged with another DUI, that charge is enhanced to a felony. An individual’s prior record will determine the severity of their most recent charge.
An attorney in Darien could gather any sort of evidence that could prove that the individual was not intoxicated when defending a felony DUI charge. Any surveillance footage, booking videos, medical records, or anything to show that the individual was not under the influence, an attorney will employ. Further, a lawyer will want to see if there was an accident or whether anyone was seriously hurt. They will look for evidence that could mitigate the charge.
Potential Penalties for DUI Charges in Darien
A DUI is a criminal charge. If it is someone’s first time receiving a drunk driving charge, it is probably a misdemeanor, but if they already have the charge on their record, it could be escalated into a felony. If someone is convicted of either, they are going to have a permanent criminal record. There is also a lot of social stigma that comes with a DUI. People are sometimes ashamed when they get the charge.
On top of all of the criminal and community social stigmas and penalties, an individual will also lose their license for a period of time by being arrested, even if they are not convicted of a DUI. If someone is convicted or if they plead guilty to a felony charge, they must serve a minimum of 120 days in jail, and could face up to two years. After that concludes, there will be a period of probation and a fine. The probation would include substance abuse and alcohol treatment check-ins with an officer, as well as urine samples. This may also include community service. A lawyer in Darien could help someone accused of DUI minimize the potential penalties of this charge.
Does Connecticut Use Deferred Sentencing?
Connecticut does not have anything called deferred sentencing, but there may be an opportunity for a fully-suspended sentence. That way, if someone is going to have to either plea or is found guilty of DUI, there might be an opportunity to avoid jail and perhaps go right to probation with a fully-suspended jail sentence.
Benefits of a Darien DUI Attorney
First, a Darien DUI lawyer will make sure to protect the person’s rights in court. One of the ways they could do that is to make sure to preserve any relevant evidence and make sure to get ahold of any surveillance footage or medical records.
The second thing an attorney could do is see whether the police used constitutional searches and seizures and whether all the necessary procedures were followed. Especially in a DUI, an experienced lawyer can sometimes challenge the admission of statements or even the accuracy of blood content measures.
An attorney will work out the charge by pre-trying the case and negotiating with the prosecutor to see if they are eligible for pre-trial programs, to see if they can avoid jail, and to see if they could overturn the DMV license suspension.
It is important to have a Darien DUI lawyer who knows the area and is familiar with everything in Stamford court. An individual will also want a lawyer that is familiar with each department’s training regulations. It is crucial to have an attorney who, if the police did not follow one of those little procedural rules, will be able to challenge that.