If you have been arrested for a Los Angeles DUI, the best thing you could do for yourself is to retain a Los Angeles DUI attorney as soon as possible. An experienced attorney will look for the factual and evidentiary weaknesses in your case so that they can help prepare the best possible defense for you.
The first place a legal professional would start is with the police report that is prepared by the arresting officers. Officers need probable cause to stop a person, it cannot be a random stop. There has to be a valid reason that the person was stopped. For example, the person may have run a red light, or they may have been weaving in and out of traffic.
Officers make this stop based on their own observations. Sometimes the probable cause is strong and there is not much room for argument, but sometimes it is subjective and leaves room for weakness. Let’s say that a person was stopped for weaving in and out of lanes. Was the weaving blatantly apparent, slight and subtle? This will depend on how the officer interpreted it, and how the officer interpreted it may not be strong enough to support probable cause. On the other hand, if the probable cause is something like running a red light, there may not be much room for weakness and the officer will be able to support the requirement of probable cause.
The officers after having stopped a person, presumably with sufficient probable cause, must then make observations to determine whether there is enough reasonable suspicion to ask a person to submit to a blood alcohol test. The driver may confess to having had a few drinks, and that will constitute reasonable suspicion, but if they have not confessed, it will be based on the officer’s observations alone.
The officer will look for something like watery eyes, smell of alcohol, unsteady gaze. These are all subjective observations and leave room for argument. What if other passengers in the car had drank and the alcohol smell was from them? What if the driver was tired but had not been drinking? The attorney will study all the facts presented by the officer and will develop a defense to weaken the Prosecutor’s case.
There are many other factors that an experienced Los Angeles lawyer will consider when analyzing your case and the evidence. Prosecutor’s use these same facts and evidence to demonstrate that you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, and it is the same evidence that your attorney can use to weaken their argument. The weaker the evidence, the more room for negotiation and the more probability that the case will be reduced or dismissed. It is difficult for a lay person to analyze the facts and evidence of a case when they do not know the law and are not familiar with the court system.
Make the decision that will help alleviate future long term consequences and retain a Los Angeles DUI expert as soon as possible!