When you have been arrested for suspicion of a Los Angeles DUI, officers will ask you to take a field sobriety test at the scene of the arrest. This test is not mandatory, and is voluntary. This means that you do not have to submit to it, and there are no consequences. However, if you are arrested, you will be required to take one at the station. This test can be a breath test, or a blood test. There used to also be a urine test option but that is no longer the case.
Oftentimes people do not want to take the breath test and opt for the blood test. For example, they may have asthma and are unable to blow hard enough into the breathalyzer machine. If they opt for the blood test, then those results will be provided in two weeks.
However, in certain situations people refuse to take either test. They may have a fear of needles, or they may simply not agree to submit to a test. If you refuse to take either test, it could be categorized as a refusal, and a refusal will be considered an aggravating factor when and if you are sentenced for a DUI. This means that the sentence will be on the higher end of the range, or will have added sentencing because of the refusal or take a test. It is viewed as being uncooperative.
In many cases, despite having refused a blood test, officers may forcefully take one. There has been recent law that has been passed down stating that a forced blood test is in violation of a person’s fourth amendment rights. This means that if your blood was forcefully drawn, there may be an available defense or argument rendering the blood test results in admissible.
The further drawback of a forced blood test is that even though a test was drawn and the blood alcohol reported, because it was not voluntary and forced, officers and Prosecutors treat it like a refusal. Thus, it will have the same additional consequences and aggravated factors, even though a test was gathered.
This is a complicated situation to be in, but one with many variables that may potentially offer a way for the charge to be dismissed or reduced. If you find yourself in this situation, it is highly recommended that you speak to a Los Angeles DUI Lawyer as soon as possible. They will take the time to review your case, and analyze the facts. This will give you a much better understanding of what your realistic consequences are, and what your available defenses and arguments are. If there is a chance to have your case dismissed, or reduced, you do not want to risk it on your own, you want an experienced, and knowledgeable legal professional fighting for you and working hard to get you the best results possible! Don’t take the chance, call today.