Redlands DUI Lawyer: Driving Under the Influence and the Pretext Stop
The initial consideration in presenting a defense for driving under the influence (DUI) is the validity of the stop that led to your arrest. If law enforcement did not have a legally valid reason for stopping your vehicle in the first place, your Redlands DUI lawyer will ensure that you would avoid all criminal and civil penalties.
A pretext stop may be defined as the excuse for why you were pulled over, but it is not the real motive. Basically, the police believed you were driving under the influence and cited some alleged technical traffic violation as the reason. The question then becomes, was the stop legal?
Pretext stops may be made under any number of circumstances, but two common reasons are driving too slowly and weaving across traffic lanes. In evaluating the facts of specific cases, different courts in different jurisdictions have arrived at very different results.
For example, one court found that driving too slowly on an interstate highway constituted a safety hazard. The resultant DUI stop was found permissible. In contrast, another court in that same state found that the suspect who was driving at approximately half the posted 55 mph limit was not driving in a manner that permitted a stop based upon reasonable suspicion.
There is no legal basis for a stop made on a highway where no minimum speed limit is posted, as any Redlands DUI lawyer can explain.
Gauging is another problem that often comes up with driving too slowly.
Another unclear issue related to driving slowly is the question of how much time can pass after a red light turns green before an officer can properly make a stop. Courts have ruled differently based on, literally, a 10 second difference in elapsed time.
Weaving across traffic lanes is another gray area resulting in varied outcomes. Circumstances such as how far the driver may have strayed into another lane, or whether the driver weaved “within” his or her own lane and the volume of traffic on the road at the time (and thus the potential for an accident) are relevant factors, but each are weighed differently by each court.
DUI cases are complex and your best chance for a positive resolution begins with a consultation with an experienced Redlands DUI lawyer. For a free initial consultation with DUI lawyer Scott Stotz, simply fill out the form on this page.
Law Office of Scott T. Stotz
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Redlands, CA 92371
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