In California, DUI laws are in place to stop multiple DUI offenders. Being charged with a DUI with an allegation of prior DUI convictions means you were convicted of one or more DUI or an alcohol related offense, such as a wet reckless, within 10 years from the last DUI offense.
Being charged in Fresno County is problematic because the district attorneys are even more determined to obtain a conviction than other counties. The Fresno County District Attorney’s Office will fight for a conviction on all DUI cases, even when there may not be enough evidence to show you were actually drinking and driving. Therefore, your best option is to retain an experienced DUI lawyer.
When facing a DUI with a prior, understanding the consequences from the Court and DMV is critical to fighting DUI charges.
Most DUIs are misdemeanors, unless the DUI involves an injury or the defendant has three or more priors, then the case is elevated to a felony.
If this new DUI is a second or third offense, then you are being charged with a misdemeanor. Second and third DUIs require increased penalties, including jail time, a longer term of probation, fines, court fees, license revocation, alcohol related classes and counseling, AA/NA meetings, ignition locking device, and community service.
If you have three or more, you are facing a felony, and will be looking at state prison. A felony DUI does not qualify for realignment through AB 109. Therefore, the punishment may include prison, parole, larger fines and court fees, restitution fees, probation fees, license revocation, court mandated counseling and DUI education programs, and other penalties that a judge may feel is appropriate.
If you are charged with a DUI with prior allegations, it is important to discuss your DUI case with a DUI lawyer. When discussing your matter, the attorney will be able to decide if you have a winning defense. There are different things that need to be looked at carefully, such as the police investigation, the field sobriety tests, the breath or blood sample, and whether you were at a .08 percent or more at the time of driving. Failure to correctly investigate these matters can dramatically change the way your case is resolved.
A minimum of a 1-year suspension is imposed on DUI drivers having one or more prior DUI convictions or a DMV action within 10 years.
When a driver is served with the DS-367 form, the driver only has ten (10) calendar days to contact DMV in order to Request an Administrative Hearing, which is called a Driver Safety Administrative Per Se "APS" Hearing. Failure to contact the Fresno Driver Safety Office within 10 days of your DUI arrest will result in your driver’s license suspension or revocation.
When requesting a hearing, the driver’s may also request a stay until the decision of the hearing. The best system for reaching DMV is to fax: 1) a demand for a hearing; 2) a request for a stay of the suspension or revocation; and, 3) a demand for all discovery the DMV will introduce into evidence.
Remember, you must contact DMV within 10 days from the date of your arrest. If you fail to do so, your license will probably be suspended or revoked. In many instances, even a great defense will not matter if you do not ask for your hearing.
Because there are many advantages of requesting a hearing, you should do so right away to protect your rights. If you are unable contact an attorney within 10 days, please see the Request for DMV Hearing form in order to complete and send to your local DMV Driver’s Safety Office. If you would like, you may contact our DUI office and we will ask for an APS hearing for you at no charge to you.
One of the most ideal approaches to defending against the potential punishments of a DUI conviction is to contact an accomplished DUI lawyer to speak to you. At the Law Offices of Tina M. Barberi, PC, our DUI lawyer will make sure the District Attorney can prove the current DUI, as well as the alleged prior DUI convictions.
Further, we will not only help you with your court case, but we also handle your DMV hearing and will ensure your license is returned as soon as possible. For more information, please feel free to call to discuss your DUI with priors. When you call our office, keep in mind that we will request a DMV hearing for you at no charge and no commitments.