In a San Diego driving under the influence charge the Prosecutor has the burden of proving that the driver was intoxicated at the time of the arrest. To prove their case the Prosecutor will use several different types of evidence and must show proof beyond a reasonable doubt.
If the driver took a blood alcohol content test, the reading will be a part of the evidence presented by the government. A blood alcohol test is administered at the station following the arrest and may be a blood or breath test. If a person is unable to take one of the tests, they must take the other. For example, if a person has severe asthma and cannot take a breath test, they must take a blood test. If the person is unable to take either test, it will be considered a refusal by law. A refusal, regardless of the reasons for not taking either test, there may result in further penalties in addition to those of a DUI.
The final BAC reading will be entered into evidence as an exhibit whether it is over a .08 or not. California Vehicle Code § 23152 and 23153 does not state that the intoxication level for a DUI must only be .08 or higher. The code section also states that anybody found driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs may be found guilty of a DUI, whether it is at a .08 or not.
The Prosecutors will also introduce the arresting officer’s report as evidence of intoxication. The report will generally include observations made by the officer as well as the reason the driver was stopped and later questioned. The officer’s report will also include any statements made by the driver. The credibility of an officer is generally presumed to be pretty high in comparison to that of the charged driver and so to contest statements in the officer’s report is difficult, but can be done.
Observations in the statement will include things like slurred speech, blurred vision and results of any field sobriety test. Additionally, the officer will ask the driver if they had been drinking, how long they had been drinking and if they had anything to eat.sThe officer does not have to read a person their Miranda rights before asking these questions, and the driver is not required to answer. If the driver has answered, the officer will make a note of the statements and include them in his report.
When Prosecution attempts to prove intoxication in a Criminal Court, there will be a presumed credibility to the statements of the officer and the reading of any BAC test. An experienced San Diego DUI lawyer has represented thousands of clients in DUI cases and knows precisely what to expect from the government as far as evidence and potential arguments. The attorney will prepare a powerful defense that will be specific to the facts of each case and will properly cast doubt or reduce the credibility of evidence presented by the Prosecution.