Being arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) can be a frightening experience, especially if you’ve never been in trouble with the law before. At the Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry, Inc., our Orange County DUI lawyers receive calls from many individuals who want to know whether or not they should fight DUI charges or simply plead guilty and move on.
Although every case is different and involves unique facts and circumstances, you should understand that you have every right to fight a DUI charge – and you should. There are many ways to fight the allegations made against you, and many ways to achieve a more positive outcome than would otherwise occur when you immediately plead guilty.
Below are 4 simple reasons why it’s worth fighting a DUI charge
- The Government Has the Burden of Proof – Our criminal justice system is built on the presumption of innocence. This means you are considered innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, the burden of proof in a criminal case (and a higher burden of proof compared to that in civil cases). Because it is the government’s responsibility to prove their version of the facts beyond any reasonable doubt, you have the opportunity to challenge their narrative and dismantle whatever facts they may have against you. This is your right, and you can take full advantage of it should you choose to do so.
- Police Make Errors – Law enforcement officers are held to high standards, and these standards are enforced by the court. This is because everyone is guaranteed the same Constitutional rights when stopped, investigated, and arrested under suspicion of committing a crime. By immediately pleading guilty, you miss out on the opportunity to investigate the circumstances surrounding your arrest. Did the officer have sufficient legal grounds to stop you? Did they follow protocol and have probable cause to believe you were under the influence? Were breath or chemical tests administered and handled properly? If you just plead guilty right away, you miss the chance to find out the answers to these questions. If police make errors or violate your rights, it can result in inadmissible evidence and make a prosecutor’s job of proving your guilt very difficult.
- Defenses Are Available – Again, every case is different, but there are defenses available. For example, you can challenge the basis for your stop and for the arresting officer’s investigation. You can defend yourself against charges that claim you were under the influence even if your blood alcohol content was below the legal limit. Depending on the facts involved, an experienced lawyer can find ways to defend against the accusations made against you.
- The Only Way to Win is to Fight – To put it simply, the only way to win – whether that be a dismissal of charges or a reduction of charges and penalties – is to work and fight your case. Because the laws can be complex, it’s best to work with lawyers who understand California DUI laws and how to produce the best possible results. That’s exactly what we do for our clients at the Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry, Inc.
If you have questions about a recent DUI arrest in Orange County and want to know more about how our firm of award-winning lawyers can help you fight your charges, reach out to our team as soon as possible. Our firm is available to discuss your case and your rights, and explain how we may be able to help during both your criminal case and administrative hearings with the DMV regarding your driver’s license.
Contact us today for a free consultation.