This Vehicle Code Section has to do with people who are on DUI probation in Los Angeles County who get pulled over by the police and part of the terms and conditions of their probation is they cannot have any measurable amount of alcohol in their system.
A lot of times the police can look in their computer in their vehicle and see that someone is on probation for a DUI, they pull them over and have them blow into a preliminary alcohol screen device, and if they blow a .01 or greater — meaning they have some alcohol in their system, they can then write them a ticket for this Vehicle Code Section 23154, which basically says that a person may be found in violation of this Section if the time of their driving while their on probation for a violation of Vehicle Code Section 23152 or 23153, which is the felony DUI, and the trier of fact is able to determine that they consumed an alcoholic beverage and were driving a vehicle with a blood alcohol level of .01% or greater as measured by the preliminary alcohol screening device.
Part of the terms of this are that the testing shall be instant to a lawful detention and administered at the direction of a police officer having reasonable cause to believe the person is driving a motor vehicle in violation of subdivision (a).
So, basically what that’s saying is, people can’t just pull people over for any reason, just because they want to see if they have any alcohol in their system.
They have to have a lawful reason for pulling them over — some sort of a traffic offense — tinting windows, illegal turn, speeding — and then if they smell alcohol on them and it looks like the person has been drinking, and then they’re able to determine that they’re on probation for a DUI, then the police officer can have them blow into a preliminary alcohol screening device which most of the officers carry in their car, and if it registers anything a .01 or greater, then the person is going to be cited for this Vehicle Code Section 23154.
They’ll probably be cited in with a ticket to the local court in that jurisdiction. The worse thing is, their license will probably be snatched away from them and sent to the DMV and the DMV is going to be notified and they have a chance they’ll lose their driver’s license.
The next element in order to prove this Vehicle Section, the person shall be told that his or her failure to submit to or failure to complete a preliminary alcohol screening test or other chemical test as requested, will result in the suspension or revocation of the person’s privilege to operate a motor vehicle for a period of one to three years as provided for in California Vehicle Code Section 133353.1.
So, what this is indicating is, if you fail or refuse to take the preliminary alcohol screening test, they can suspend your license for a minimum of a year, and the police officer has to tell you that.
When they say failed to take the test, a lot of people will try to blow in the PBT and they won’t blow hard enough and intentionally try to beat the test by not blowing hard enough into the machine.
This, if it is determined is happening, can put them in a position where they end up with the violation, losing their license for a year or more, and a lot of times the officers will then take them to the hospital or police station where they can draw their blood in order to prove that their either a DUI or they have violated this Vehicle Code Section 23154.
As you can see from this Code Section, they take DUI’s in Los Angles County very seriously and if a person gets charged with this Code Section, they definitely want to get an attorney who is seasoned, local, knows how to deal with these DUI’s, knows how to deal with the DMV and knows what it takes to get you the best possible result if you’re facing a DUI case or if you’re facing a violation of Vehicle Code Section 23154 which basically is offenses involving alcohol and drugs when you’re on probation for a DUI.