Under California Vehicle Code section 23152, anyone driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or prescription medication will be charged with a DUI. The Fresno Superior Court takes all DUI charges serious and the judges will punish anyone convicted of a DUI under the law.
Facing criminal charges for drinking and driving is not only terrifying, but is also incredibly stressful. The most common question is “what is going to happen to me now that I am being charged with a DUI or other criminal offense?”
The first step in determining what will happen is to understand how the courts in Fresno work, especially when it comes to DUI charges.
The DUI process begins when a police officer pulls you over either for a traffic violation or on suspicion of drunk driving. When the person is initially pulled over, the officer will gauge whether a person is driving under the influence by listening to the driver’s speech, smell their breath, and watch the driver’s dexterity and general appearance.
You will most likely be asked to submit to blood & breath tests, the purpose of which is to secure the necessary evidence to convict you. Refusing to submit to a chemical tests can lead to a 1-year driver's license suspension under our state's implied consent law, regardless of whether you are proven guilty of DUI.
Fighting for your license is separate from the criminal process, but important to mention in the context of avoiding DUI penalties, is the fact that you must request a DMV hearing within 10 days of your arrest, or face an a automatic license suspension. Your attorney can represent you at the hearing.
At arraignment, the judge reads the formal charges, and you or your attorney will enter a plea of guilty or not guilty.
Bail is the amount of money a criminal defendant is required to pay in exchange for the release from jail pending trial. Bail is returned once the trial proceedings have concluded, but bail is forfeited to the State if the defendant fails to appear in court at trial or other court proceedings.
The police officer pulls you over either for a traffic violation or on suspicion of drunk driving. When the person is initially pulled over, the officer will gauge whether a person may is driving under the influence by listening to the driver’s speech, smell their breath, and watch the driver’s dexterity and general appearance.
Motions may be made because the defense has not received all discovery. As discussed previously, all evidence in the prosecutor’s possession that might tend to show the defendant’s innocence must be disclosed.
There may be a variety of court appearances for addressing procedural matters and to facilitate negotiation between the prosecutor and the defense. A large percentage of drunk driving cases resolve at this point, when the client is satisfied with the district attorney’s offer for a plea bargain.
motions are common in misdemeanor and felony cases. The most common pretrial motion is a motion
to suppress evidence because it is in violation of the defendant’s
constitutional rights. The typical
motion will try to suppress searches, seizures, and confessions.
Another common motion is a 995 motion, but is only used in felony cases after a defendant has been held to answer after a preliminary hearing. These motions are used when it is believed that either, 1) a defendant’s constitutional rights were violated at the preliminary hearing; 2) there was insufficient or illegal evidence was used to hold the defendant to answer; 3) the prosecutor failed to timely file charges; or, 4) the judge at the preliminary hearing made a factual determination that undermines the prosecutor’s case.
If your case goes to trial, you will benefit from the fact that we prepare for trial with every client we represent. We have earned the respect of prosecutors and judges in Fresno County. At trial, it will be possible to present evidence and witnesses, to cross examine the DA's witnesses, which may include the officer who arrested you, and to present an argument on your behalf.
If the charges are dropped or if you are exonerated, you will have the freedom to quickly put this experience behind you. In the event that you enter a guilty plea, you may receive a harsh sentence with penalties which can last a lifetime. It is important that you have an experienced DUI attorney on your side to fight for a lighter sentence.
If you were arrested and charged with any DUI crime in the Fresno Superior Court, you need a DUI attorney that understands the courts and knows how to negotiate a case and take it to trial.
At the Law Offices of Tina M. Barberi, PC, we understand the DUI process in courts and DMV in Fresno. We know what it takes to obtain the results desired by our clients.
Even if the evidence seems overwhelming against you, it does not mean you will be convicted of a DUI. The government must prove the evidence against you and when they fail to do so, it is our job to get your case thrown out of court and at DMV. If a dismissal of the DUI charges is not possible, we will try to find a way for your DUI charge to be reduced.
When facing a DUI, you can count on our DUI lawyer to give you sound legal advice on the DUI process and put a plan in place to resolve the underlying problems. We will work proactively in our representation so you will obtain the best possible defense for your DUI case in Fresno.
If you were recently arrested or cited for DUI offense in Fresno, we urge you to contact our office today. We will not only give you a free and confidential consultation, we will also contact DMV to request a DMV hearing for you. Don’t wait, contact us today to see what we can do for your DUI case.