Experienced Redlands DUI attorney explains the law
If you have been charged with driving under the influence, let an experienced Redlands DUI attorney represent you. An experienced DUI attorney understands the law and knows the steps that must be followed in order to assist you in obtaining a successful resolution of your case. Knowing that you have a well prepared, competent defense can help put your mind at ease. An experienced attorney will understand that your DUI charge may be your first exposure to the criminal justice system. Choose a lawyer like Scott Stotz, who understands the process and can help ensure that you get the defense you deserve.
The State’s DUI Case
The state must be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt each element of the DUI offense that you are charged with. Your Redlands DUI lawyer will examine whether the state can meet their burden of proof in your case.
A number of factors can have an influence on the state’s DUI case including the events leading up to your being stopped by law enforcement, your initial reaction to being stopped by law enforcement, your appearance and demeanor at the time you were stopped and subsequently arrested, and the results of any sobriety tests that were performed by law enforcement.
Your initial reaction to being stopped by law enforcement can have a substantial effect on your case. Assume, for example, that once you saw the flashing sirens of the police cruiser, you immediately pulled over and cooperated fully with the police officers. If you were able to fully and coherently respond to their questions, complete any sobriety tests that you were asked to perform, and can successfully and accurately recount these events to your attorney, then your DUI attorney in Redlands, Scott Stotz, can use this information to cast doubt on the results of your sobriety tests by arguing that your actions at the time of your arrest do not correspond with what one would anticipate the reaction would be from someone with your reported blood alcohol level.
Field sobriety tests
If any field or sobriety tests were conducted at the time of your arrest, your Redlands DUI lawyer will analyze and evaluate your results to ensure the tests were properly conducted and that the results are accurate. If a field sobriety tests was not conducted properly under the law, then it will have little to no value in proving intoxication. The following are examples of the types of field sobriety tests that may have been administered, and possible defenses that your experienced DUI attorney could assert on your behalf.
A coordination test is a type of field sobriety test that an officer may administer to determine whether or not you were intoxicated at the time your vehicle was stopped. It is important to understand that even a sober person could have difficulty performing some of the tasks that an officer may ask you to perform during a coordination test as many people already struggle with physical coordination. Do not assume that your having difficulty already means you are guilty. Each test needs to be evaluated under the law to ensure that the proper procedure was carried out and that the results were accurately and fairly determined. An experienced Redlands DUI lawyer will know how to evaluate the method used to perform the test as well as the results reported. The conditions under which coordination tests were given should always be examined. For example, your experienced Redlands DUI attorney will consider questions such as:
• Did the officer administer a field sobriety test that required you to walk and balance, such as the walk-and-turn test or the one-leg stand test?
• Would you have had difficulty performing such actions anyway regardless as to whether you were sober or not?
• Were you asked to perform the coordination test in a well-lit room in the police station, or by the side of a darkened road on an unsteady surface?
It is important that you have your own physical coordination evaluated. Your DUI lawyer will review carefully whether it is possible to have you demonstrate your ability to perform field sobriety tests in court. It may be possible to have you demonstrate difficulty in performing field sobriety tests at your trial to negate the state’s theory that any difficulty you had in performing the test was the result of intoxication.
Horizontal gaze nystagmus test. Were you subjected to the horizontal gaze nystagmus test at the time of your arrest? If so you should be evaluated to determine whether or not you may have naturally occurring nystagmus. Officers will sometimes test the eyes of a person pulled over during a suspected DUI to see if there is any evidence of nystagmus, an involuntary twitching or movement or movement of the eyes. Though it is possible that a finding of nystagmus (this involuntary, twitching eye movement) is due to intoxication, many people also have naturally occurring nystagmus. It is not necessary to visit a doctor to be tested for nystagmus. Your DUI attorney can evaluate you during your initial consultation. If you have been subjected to a horizontal gaze nystagmus test, please inform the attorney at your consultation. If your DUI attorney is able to show that you have naturally occurring nystagmus or that the officer improperly administered the test, it may be possible to have the test and its results excluded by motion prior to trial.
Other field sobriety tests. While an officer may conduct other tests during a DUI stop, the Department of Transportation has issued a report concluding that a combination of three tests —the horizontal gaze nystagmus, walk-and-turn test, and the one-leg stand test – are sufficient to give an officer enough data upon which to base an arrest decision. The report entitled “Improved Field Sobriety Testing” implies that other common field sobriety tests alone are not sufficient provide the “firm data” needed for the officer to make an arrest decision. If you have been subjected to any other field sobriety test, be sure to let your DUI attorney. Any information you provide will be evaluated to determine whether the test was properly administered and if the results of the test should have been given any weight in determining whether or not an actual arrest should have been made. Don’t make these decisions alone.
If you have been charged with a DUI, you will need the assistance of an experienced Redlands DUI attorney to help you receive the best defense possible. The Law Office of Scott T. Stotz has years of experience representing defendants in DUI cases. If you would like to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case, please contact our experienced Redlands DUI attorney at one of the numbers listed below.
Law Office of Scott T. Stotz
1255 W. Colton Ave. #121
Redlands, CA 92371
Toll Free: 888-214-9153
Riverside Office: Turner Riverwalk
11801 Pierce St., Suite 200
Riverside, CA 92505
Ontario Office: Lakeshore Center
3281 E. Guasti Road, 7th Floor
Ontario, CA 91761