Can I be charged with a DUI? 11 Answers as of July 18, 2011

I was arrested on my own property for DUI, the land has a marked gate "NO TRESPASSING." I have permission to operate a vehicle on this property. when police showed up I was not in the vehicle I was not in possesion of the keys to the vehicle and I was actually sitting on the porch.

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Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider
Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider | Peter Goldscheider
You can be charged with DUI on private property. The evidence against you however sounds weak.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 7/18/2011
Nelson & Lawless
Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
CAN they charge you? Of course. They may think they can convict you. Of course you can fight it. When arrested or charged with any crime, the proper questions are, can any evidence obtained in a test, search or confession be used against you, and can you be convicted, and what can you do? Raise all possible defenses with whatever admissible and credible witnesses, evidence and facts are available for legal arguments, for evidence suppression or other motions, or at trial. You can hire an attorney, unless you know how to effectively represent yourself in court against a professional prosecutor intending to convict. He will try to get a dismissal, diversion, reduction or other decent outcome through plea bargain, or take it to trial if appropriate. Keep in mind a little free advice: When arrested for DUI, whether alcohol or drugs, then upon release from jail or booking the defendant is given documents that include a notice that you have only ten days to file a request with DMV for a hearing on an appeal of an automatic one-year suspension of your license imposed by DMV. That is separate and runs consecutively with any suspension that may be imposed by the court. Contact DMV and do so, timely, then appear at your scheduled DMV appeal hearing and present any supporting evidence and testimony. If you don't know how to do these things, then hire an attorney that does. If serious about hiring counsel to help in this, and if this is in SoCal courts, feel free to contact me.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 7/15/2011
Wallin & Klarich: A Law Corporation
Wallin & Klarich: A Law Corporation | Paul Wallin
Whether you can be successfully prosecuted is the real question. People are prosecuted every day when they have not in fact committed a crime, and they retain an experienced criminal or DUI defense firm to help them so they can hopefully have the charges dropped. In your case it will depend if the DA has any circumstantial evidence that you were driving on public property at anytime. Where you were arrested is not as important as WHY the officer arrested you? What observations did the officer make of your driving? Did you do a field sobriety test? Did you take a blood alcohol test? Those are the critical questions. The fact that you have a "no trespassing sign" on your property does NOT stop police from entering if they believe that you have committed a criminal offense in most circumstances. Your case is an interesting one and you should immediately contact a DUI defense firm or go to wklawdui.com for more information.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 7/15/2011
Attorney at Law
Attorney at Law | Michael J. Kennedy
I don't know if the question is whether you can be charged because it is private property [yes], or whether you can be charged because no one saw you driving [sometimes yes, sometimes no; many variables].
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 7/15/2011
Law Office of Tracey S. Sang
Law Office of Tracey S. Sang | Tracey Sang
Sounds like you have a good case. You haven't explained why you were arrested - did a private citizen report you? If so, that person's testimony that you were driving may be enough evidence to convict you. It is not necessary that the officer saw you driving if someone else did. That said, it sounds like you may have some solid defenses - at least enough to get a very good deal.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 7/14/2011
    Law Office of Edward J. Blum
    Law Office of Edward J. Blum | Edward J. Blum
    You can be charged. That's not really the question. The question is: can you be convicted of DUI. I think the answer is no. First, for the arrest to be lawful, the crime of DUI must occur in the officer's presence (PC 836). Since the "D" in DUI stands for Driving, the police must see you drive. California is volitional movement state, the offense of DUI in California requires movement of the vehicle. Second, at a trial the prosecution must prove not only that you were driving, but when you were driving so that either the presumption can be used or so that they can use 'retrograde extrapolation' to determine your BAC at the time you were driving.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/14/2011
    The Law Firm of Aaron Bortel Esq.
    The Law Firm of Aaron Bortel Esq. | Aaron Bortel
    They can arrest you and charge you if they want, but the question is can they convict you. That I cannot begin to answer without a lot more information.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/14/2011
    Law Office of Rodney Nosratabadi
    Law Office of Rodney Nosratabadi | Rodney Nosratabadi
    You can still be charged with a dui even if not driving on a public highway.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/14/2011
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    Yes you can, if they have enough circumstantial evidence to show that you had been driving before they arrived. Remember you can be arrested for driving drunk anywhere, including your own home.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/14/2011
    Law Offices of Matthew Murillo
    Law Offices of Matthew Murillo | Matthew Murillo
    There is something missing from the information you provided. No mention of alcohol. If alcohol was involved in any way, or any other drug, than that is an important factor. I suggest you speak with a Criminal Defense attorney in person, rather than posting on an anonymous website. Then you will be able to get more direct answers to your questions, that are specific to your situation. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/14/2011
    The Law Offices of Christopher J. McCann
    The Law Offices of Christopher J. McCann | Christopher J. McCann
    You can get a DUI on private property. It sounds like you may have a good "no driving" defense. Hopefully you didn't give the police any information that you were driving.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/14/2011
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