When it comes to DUI cases in Los Angeles, the truth is somebody's character and their standing in the community really doesn't help them in anyway whatsoever when it comes to trying to resolve a DUI matter.
Prosecutor's Don't Care About Your Good Character
The prosecutors really don't care. What the prosecutors care about is your dangerousness level. In other words, how dangerous were you out there on the road? Were you going really fast? Did you crash into any vehicles? Was your blood alcohol so high that you were extremely likely to kill somebody out on the road?
These are the things they care about. People who don't have a record, have a great stand in the community, a great job, a great family — the prosecutors don't care about that. It's meaningless to them.
That's the truth about DUI's. These attorneys or sales people on the phone who tell you to get character letters and all that regarding a DUI is a complete waste of time. These attorneys that are telling you to start going to AA meetings – again, a complete waste of time unless you have an alcohol problem.
If you have an alcohol problem, the prosecutors are probably going to give you more restrictions and more punishment because they're going to consider you a more dangerous individual.
Of course, I always encourage people if they have an alcohol problem or a drug addiction to take care of their problem on their own. But, once you get the courts involved there are ramifications behind that.
Blood Alcohol Level
So, the truth be told, you should really rely on your DUI defense attorney in plotting your strategy when it comes to these DUI cases in Los Angeles because they are the ones that are going to have all the facts and they will have a good feel for what actually might make a difference in your case.
The real factors and truth behind DUI's in Los Angeles is that the prosecutors are going to first and foremost, look at your blood alcohol level. The higher it is, the more dangerous you were on the road. That's going to be one of the big things that dictates what type of a punishment and conviction they are going to want.
If your blood alcohol level is a .08 or very close to a .08, you will have a good argument that they are not going to prove that you're DUI because the machine they use to test your blood alcohol level is not 100% accurate. Especially if you took the breath test. The blood test is more accurate, but your attorney with an expert, can do a blood split and see what the real blood level was and hopefully it's lower and closer to the .08 than what the prosecutors have.
So, truth be told, whenever you're thinking about where you stand on your DUI, obviously you consult with your attorney, but you're also going to look at what you did out there on the road. If you're going over 100 mph on the highway and your blood alcohol level is over a .08, expect to get smashed by the prosecutors.
They're not going to let people be out there doing 100 mph with alcohol in their system. That's a recipe for disaster and those are the type of people that are obviously going to get punished.
DUI and Common Sense Manner
The real truth about DUI's in Los Angeles is that they look at them in a common sense manner. They're out there — when I say they, we're talking about the judges, the prosecutors, law enforcement — they're there to protect the public.
So, if you didn't do anything dangerous and you're driving fine and you pass most of the police's test and you're real close to the legal limit, you're going to have a great argument. If you have a great attorney behind you, you're probably going to end up with a very good result that you can live with. Your attorney will be in a good position to do damage control.
So, first move, get in front of an attorney. Tell them what happened. Be honest. Don't leave anything out and then start to get your strategy together for exactly what you're going to do. Most of these cases, and this is another truth power point, are not going to be able to be fought in a jury trial because the prosecutors usually won't file a case unless they have strong evidence.
There are exceptions to this. Sometimes police do a rush to judgment and they don't get your version of events and they don't talk to all of the witnesses or seek all of the evidence. In those cases, you may have a chance to win the case, but this is something that your attorney is going to have to be honest with you from the gate.
Don't listen to some sales person over the phone or some attorney just get your business. They're trying to quote you a fee to do a trial and they haven't even looked at any of the evidence. Because if they do the trial and you lose, they still get paid. You go to jail and end up with the worse resolution of your case.
So, I never quote trial fees until I see the case. Then we can talk about whether you should go to trial. Then I can assess how long a trial might take and give you a reasonable fee. So, you don't want people quoting trial fees right from the beginning. Let them gather information.
Let them find out what's going on with your case, then your case can be handled the right way, with a plan that is designed to help you; not try to get as much money from you and give you the bad news later.
So, really look at some of these attorneys and what they're saying. A lot of times, they are just sales people answering the phone. The truth in these DUI cases is, you need to get in front of any attorney who has done these cases before, who knows what they are doing and can really give you some solid advice and help you make some solid strategy decisions so you get the best result.