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Orange County Drunk Driving

DUI Defenses

There are a number of defenses that arise in most Orange County DUI-DWI cases. A skilled Orange County DUI defense attorney will be able to assist you in deciding which defenses to address in your particular case. Outlined below are a few defenses that may apply:

Rising Defense

Vehicle Code Section 23152(b) states that it is unlawful to operate a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol level of over .08% BAC. While a chemical test may indicate a BAC of higher than the legal limit it does not accurately detail whether the person was actually driving with a BAC of that level. The chemical test simply captures the BAC at that particular moment. Alcohol affects every person differently and is absorbed at different rates. The BAC taken at the precinct following an Orange County arrest for DUI may actually be higher than when the person was driving. This is known as the rising defense.

If someone were to drink a couple of beers right before leaving the bar, get in a car and drive to their home which is about 20 minutes away the alcohol from the couple of beers may not have had enough time to make its way through the body. In essence it is still in the stomach waiting to take effect. An expert toxicologist will be able to look at the breath/blood records from the chemical test, the rate of alcohol consumption, consider any food that may have absorbed the alcohol and take into account any elimination to piece together a timeline which might produce an effective rising defense.

No Driving Defense

In addition to proving that your blood alcohol concentration was above the legal limit at the time of driving, the prosecution must also show that the suspected drunk driver was actually driving. If you are pulled over on the side of the road or asleep in your car – there may be a valid defense that you were not actually driving prior to your Orange County DUI arrest. It is important to understand that these kinds of defenses are not applicable in every DUI case, but should be at least questioned.

Lack of Probable Cause

In order for an officer to pull you over there must be probable cause or a legal reason for the stop. If an arresting officer lacks probable cause then the stop is illegal and the charges following the arrest should be dismissed. Probable cause can be in the form of any vehicle code violation. This may be speeding, improper lane change or even expired registration tags.

Furthermore, the officer must have probable cause in the arrest for DUI. This means that the validity of Field Sobriety Tests and accuracy of the chemical tests can all be admitted into evidence. Field Sobriety Tests are notoriously inaccurate for detecting a person’s inebriation and are often delivered with poor instruction further lending to their imprecision.

A knowledgeable Orange County DUI Defense Attorney will tackle all defenses that arise in your suspected drunk driving case. Simply because you were arrested or cited for a vehicle code violation does not mean that you are guilty of the charges.

More Information:

Orange County Law Enforcement
DUI Schools
What to Ask a DUI Lawyer is an informational website provided by a top Orange County DUI lawyer to help those charged with drunk driving in these Orange County cities: Aliso Viejo, Anaheim, Brea, Buena Park, Costa Mesa, Cypress, Dana Point, Fountain Valley, Fullerton, Garden Grove, Huntington Beach, Irvine, La Habra, La Palma, Laguna Beach, Laguna Hills, Laguna Niguel, Laguna Woods, Lake Forest, Los Alamitos, Mission Viejo, Newport Beach, Orange, Placentia, Rancho Santa Margarita, San Clemente, San Juan Capistrano, Santa Ana, Seal Beach, Stanton, Surfside, Tustin, Villa Park, Westminster and Yorba Linda.