What can I best do to defend myself from a DUI if I honestly was not drinking? 16 Answers as of February 03, 2011

I was followed by CHP on 2 Fwy's and pulled over after exiting 2 block's from my home. At the time my license was suspended for a prior DUI. I was given a ticket for speeding at an exit a mile back, driving on suspended license, & given a breathalizer which came back 0.02 and my car impounded. I was told to walk the two blocks home. I hadn't drank but worked a double shift at my hospital & found out from the DUI instructors in my current program from the 1st conviction that the reading may have come from me using mouthwash when I changed & freshened right before my drive home. I'm wondering what I can best do to defend myself & if I honestly tell the judge that I had no alcohol & that it was from my mouthwash if the DUI charge will be dropped. The other charges I'm not as concerned.

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Law Offices of Ryan P. Murphy
Law Offices of Ryan P. Murphy | Ryan P. Murphy
In order to fight this violation of probation, driving on a suspended license, and new DUI, you will need to hire a private DUI Attorney. For example, simply pleading guilty to the driving on a suspended license for prior DUI related activities involves: 1. 2 More Points on you DMV Record,2. Possible Negligent Operator's Hearing,3. Possible revocation of your license (Not simply suspended),4. Higher court fines, and5. Jail time in some counties. Should you have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact my office at your earliest convenience.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/3/2011
The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr. | Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
I am a bit confused. A trace of alcohol is not sufficient to warrant an arrest let alone a prosecution. The .02 is probably from a PAS instrument. And the low reading would be why the CHP let you walk home instead of arresting you. Have you been to court yet? The ticket should have an appearance date on it. I think you should take the ticket and see a DUI attorney.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/2/2011
Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider
Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider | Peter Goldscheider
Chances are that if your Blood alcohol was .02 you will not be charged with DUI by the DA, nor will you lose your license under the Admin per se law. If you are you better get a good lawyer who probably could get the case reduced in an infraction.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/2/2011
Nelson & Lawless
Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
What can you do? If you have to ask what to do, then no amount of free 'tips and hints' from here or anywhere else are going to help you in your defense, other than the advice to exercise the 5th Amendment right to SHUT UP and do NOT talk to anyone except your attorney about your case. You dont get to talk to the judge about your explanations unless and until you simply plead guilty. When charged with misdemeanor[s] as you are, you potentially face up to 6-12 months in jail. On each count. Effective plea-bargaining, using whatever legal defenses, facts and sympathies you may have, could possibly keep you out of jail, or at least dramatically reduce it, depending upon all the facts and evidence. Not exactly a do it yourself project in court for someone who does not know how to effectively represent himself against a professional prosecutor intending to convict you. If serious about hiring counsel, feel free to contact me. Ill be happy to help you use whatever defenses you may have.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/2/2011
Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg
Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg | Eric Sterkenburg
It depends on facts not provided. Are you under 21? There is a 0 tolerance on under 21 people. What was your diving like? From the facts given it sounds like a like you have good defense.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/2/2011
    Law Office of Thomas F. Mueller
    Law Office of Thomas F. Mueller | Thomas Mueller
    Unless the driving was real bad or the field sobriety tests were relly poor, the D. A. will be ready to plea bargain the case. We can give you more info or take the case on .We handle many DUI cases.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/2/2011
    Law Office of Andrew Roberts
    Law Office of Andrew Roberts | Andrew Stephen Roberts
    This is simply a matter you cannot handle yourself. You need an attorney. If you cannot afford one, the court will appoint one. You have too many charges that need to dealt with; suspended license; speeding; violation of probation; new DUI. Get an attorney ASAP.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/2/2011
    Tomas M. Flores, Esq.
    Tomas M. Flores, Esq. | Tomas M. Flores
    Defending yourself in front of a criminal judge on a factual defense basis is a tall order. I wouldn't advise anyone to go up against a seasoned prosecutor, whose only purpose in that court room is to put you in jail.

    Under California Penal Code 1203.2(c):

    "Upon any revocation and termination of probation the court may, if the sentence has been suspended, pronounce judgment for any time within the longest period for which the person might have been sentenced. However, if the judgment has been pronounced and the execution thereof has been suspended, the court may revoke the suspension and order that the judgment shall be in full force and effect.

    In either case, the person shall be delivered over to the proper officer to serve his or her sentence, less any credits herein provided for." The case you described might be winnable. Don't ruin it by trying to do it yourself. Hire a lawyer to defend your freedom.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/1/2011
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    In all honesty, if you tell the Judge it was all mouthwash and to dismiss the DUI, the Judge will in all likelihood laugh so hard that he/she may fall off the chair. You need a real lawyer with a real strategy.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/1/2011
    Dennis Roberts, a P.C.
    Dennis Roberts, a P.C. | Dennis Roberts
    If you had an .02 you are not drunk as the legal limit is .08 but the terms of your probation probably require that you have NO alcohol in your system. Find a lawyer who specializes in DUI and ask for references. Your current DUI instructor might be able to recommend someone.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/1/2011
    Desert Defenders
    Desert Defenders | John Jimenez
    An forensic toxicologist can testify as to the effects of mouthwash. Hire a good attorney who knows how to use a good alcohol expert.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/1/2011
    Law Offices of Lawrence Wolf
    Law Offices of Lawrence Wolf | Lawrence Wolf
    Best to consult with an attorney. Did they take your DL? Give me a call.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/1/2011
    The Law Offices of Robert L. Driessen
    The Law Offices of Robert L. Driessen | Robert L. Driessen
    If you just had mouth wash your BAC if any would not be more than .01/.02. I highly doubt a DUI charge would be filed with that BAC. Defending yourself in a second time DUI case is never a good idea.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/1/2011
    Law Offices of Phil Hache
    Law Offices of Phil Hache | Phil Hache
    Based on your question, I am assuming you are still on probation from the first DUI. You have a good case to defend, the problem is you probably won't get a chance to speak to the judge during the pretrial stages of the case. I would recommend getting an attorney involved who can start dealing with the prosecutor in an attempt to resolve the matter without having to go to trial on it. Call me if you have any further questions, or contact me through my website.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/1/2011
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