Can DUI Cases Be Expunged In California?
One of the things that we’ve been doing a lot of lately for people is to expunge their convictions. Expunging their DUI convictions will help to get their criminal record clean. It’s another process that we help them with as well but once a person has been convicted of DUI, a conviction can be expunged after they are off probation. There have also been people that have been contacting us to help them terminate their DUI probation so that they can get their conviction expunged.
That in effect, can, does and will help them for future employment, future school. A lot of times people in college or grad school need their convictions expunged. This could affect their ability to either become licensed in the state that they want to be licensed in. Inquiries are made, there is a record of it, you would want the record for an application as well as employment opportunities out of school. So when we have the scenario where we have two people competing for the same position, both are equally qualified and there is only one position available, one person is convicted of DUI, another person is not convicted of DUI, it would seem to me and logic would dictate that the person who is not convicted of DUI would have the advantage.
What Happens When Somebody Retains Your Services For A DUI Case?
When somebody hires us, the first thing we do is to get an intake questionnaire which gets a lot of information about them and about the facts of their case. Then as part of our new client packet, we send them a big thick questionnaire, where we ask them a lot of facts about themselves and a lot of facts about their case so that we can learn more about them than we haven’t learned otherwise in talking to them over the phone and in person. Also, we request everything we can get our hands on. We send a request to the DMV. The prosecution is supposed to give us everything they have. We look to see if they have any audio tapes or any video tapes.
Of course, in each case everything is depending on the facts of the particular case and it can help determine what it is we get and what it is we look for. We almost always hire a toxicologist to testify in court in our DUI cases. Somebody who is really familiar with how alcohol is absorbed into the body and drugs be it marijuana, prescription or illegal where they understand how these drugs affect the system and a person’s ability to be impaired or not be impaired. When there are accidents or even sometimes when there aren’t accidents, if the client is able to do so we would recommend to hire an accident reconstructionist not only to help evaluate what happened or transpired but also to assist in the defense because there are oftentimes different interpretations of what happened as it relates to the cause of the accident.
How Often Are You Able To Get DUI Charges Dropped, Dismissed Or Reduced?
Oftentimes, if we are able to get DUI charges dismissed or reduced, avoid jail for our clients, avoid other punishments. For example, in California the alcohol program on a first offense is either a 3 month, 6 month or 9 month program. A second offense can be 18 months and there is also a 30 month program. There is also a shorter program for wet reckless, 12 hour program in California. We are oftentimes able to get DUI charges reduced to a non-alcohol related offense or something other than a DUI. The opportunities for somebody to have their charges reduced can be great depending on the original facts and the circumstances of each case. Only experienced lawyers like us would know when those opportunities would be available.
Sometimes, people may not hire a private attorney and use a public defender. There are some great public defenders but they are extremely limited in the time they are able to devote to each case. Because they don’t have the resources and without exception, public defenders do not get involved in the administrative DMV actions with a DUI case so a person is left to fend for themselves if they want to try and save their driver’s license. That’s why it’s always best to hire a firm like us because we have the resources and the experience to be able to devote the time necessary and to fight and win DUI cases. We are known for being aggressive in DUI defense.
We have been for decades. We’ve tried many cases over the years, oftentimes with great success and we are known to fight very hard for our clients. I believe we are well respected by the prosecutors and the courts in every jurisdiction throughout Southern California where we practice.
Can You Recall Some OF The Important DUI Cases That You Have Handled?
Oftentimes I am asked which are my most important cases are. My answer is always the same. I don’t have any cases more important than any other case. Every one of our clients we cherish. Every one of our clients is unique. Every one of our clients has their own characteristics and needs and so we feel that everybody’s case is important among the thousands of cases that we’ve handled over the decades. No client is more important than any other client. They are all equally important. But if I had to say what my favorite case was, that would be my very first case that I tried in the early 1990s after I went to the seminar in Las Vegas and learned how to try these cases correctly.
My client was pulled over and I think he was making a left turn, he pulled over and hit the curb when he parked. He was interrogated by the police officer and failed the field sobriety test according to the officer. My client blew a 0.22 on the breath test. We went to trial on the case and he was found not guilty. What I took away from that was, not just being my very first case that I tried once I knew how to successfully defend someone arrested for DUI but I won it with an acquittal of driving under the influence of alcohol and driving with a 0.08 or greater. The experience of actually doing the trial, I enjoyed it. The evidence came out exactly the way I thought it would come out.
The officers testified exactly the way I thought they would testify and I remember using a water cooler bottle to pour 12 cans of beer into the bottle to show the jury how much alcohol my client had to have in his system in order to be a 0.22 at the time of the test. It was really a lot. It probably got filled half -way up. I’m talking about those large cooler bottles that are turned upside down when they are put in a water dispenser. It was impossible for him to have that amount of alcohol in his system at the time of the breath test. It would have been even higher at the time of driving. That case sticks out in my mind as one that I think of. It was the very first case that I did and I won using the knowledge I gained from learning how to properly defend a DUI case.
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