Culpeper DUI Lawyer
In Virginia, DUI charges are serious and can have lasting repercussions. Being convicted of DUI in Virginia can lead to a lengthy suspension of your driver’s license, heavy fines, jail time, and a criminal record that can have a negative impact on your educational, professional, and financial opportunities.
With such high stakes, it is important to fight your charge by hiring an experienced Culpeper DUI lawyer who can provide experienced legal advice and strong defense against serious criminal charges. Call a DUI attorney in Virginia today to discuss your legal options.
Culpeper DUI Charges
Virginia traffic laws are quite strict, and the laws governing driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs are no exception. As in all other states, Virginia determines a driver to be under the influence of alcohol if he or she is discovered to have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or greater.
However, a person can still be charged with a DUI even if they do not blow a 0.08 in a PBT prior to arrest. A person can be charged with a DUI based on driving behavior, demeanor, smell, bloodshot eyes, and slurred speech, which are all factors that indicate to officers that there is probable cause to arrest them for driving while intoxicated.
By choosing to work with a DUI lawyer in Culpeper as soon as possible can help you to gather the evidence necessary to develop a strong defense strategy and determine whether the evidence gathered against you is admissible in court. The DUI attorneys at our firm have experience raising objections to wrongfully obtained DUI evidence and can use that experience in your favor when defending you in court.
DUI Penalties in Virginia
Penalties for DUI in Virginia vary upon the severity of the case. Aggravating factors leading to enhanced penalties may include driving with a BAC in excess of 0.15, transporting a minor while intoxicated, and repeat DUI offenses.
As a first offense, driving with a BAC between 0.08 and 0.15 carries penalties including a 12-month license suspension, minimum fine of $250, and mandatory participation in Virginia’s Alcohol Safety Action Program (ASAP).
Additional penalties for aggravating circumstances may include:
- Trauma Center Fund payments
- Mandatory minimum sentences
- Installation of ignition interlock
- Extended driver’s license suspension
- Forfeiture of vehicle
Following a DUI arrest, these outcomes are possibilities, not guarantees. You have the right to hire a Culpeper DUI attorney to represent you before the court and to handle your defense. Protecting your rights is vital in obtaining a positive outcome to your case.
Driver’s License Penalties
Driver’s license suspension is a mandatory part of DUI, so there’s no way to take away a suspension if somebody is convicted of a DUI. A Culpeper DUI lawyer, however, can work to amend a person’s DUI charge to a less serious charge that perhaps carries a lesser time of suspension with it. For example, if somebody is charged with a second DUI within ten years and is facing a three-year license suspension period, then their attorney can negotiate with the prosecutor in order to get the charge amended down to a first DUI offense, where the suspension period is only going to be one year.
Although an attorney cannot negotiate ignition interlock violations since interlock requirements are by statute, they can, however, negotiate fines and things such as potential jail periods of time and amending the charge to something less serious if there is a mandatory minimum time attached to it.
Building a Defense
A DUI attorney can question things like if there was an actual basis for the stop, what officer actually observed or did not observe, if the officer was allowed to prolong the stop, and if the officer had reasonable and articulable suspicion to investigate for the consumption of alcohol while driving. After that, the attorney can investigate if there was enough evidence in the field sobriety test, if there was a PBT and if it was administered correctly, and if the officer lacked probable cause to make an arrest.
There are many different ways to attack these types of cases, and a DUI lawyer can not only help plan out a good route of attack, but also help implement it and can think on their feet in the courtroom. This is extremely important because an attorney is going to have to respond to what the officer is saying and bend that language into something that is objectionable and into language that will help the case.
Where Your Case Will Be Heard
If you are arrested for DUI in Culpeper, your case will likely be presented before the Culpeper General District Court located at 135 West Cameron Street. As soon as possible after your arrest, you should find a criminal lawyer in Culpeper who is qualified to represent you before the court.
Benefits of Working with a Lawyer
DUIs are very serious in Virginia, but an attorney can help a person navigate this strict DUI system, whether it be for the guilt and innocence phase, or whether it’s for the punishment phase. A DUI has to be proven very succinctly and very specifically as there are many opportunities for an attorney to object to the interaction of evidence during a person’s trial, before the trial, and at various points of the DUI fact. For example, a qualified Culpeper DUI attorney can listen to the facts of a case and then take out the different moments that he or she can do a motion to suppress for the violation of the person’s rights.