BAC Testing in Prince William County DUI Cases
When someone is arrested for a drunk driving offense, a law enforcement official may ask the person to perform blood alcohol content tests to determine if the person was drinking and driving. A person has legal rights to refuse to take any tests at the police station or if they were pulled over unless there is probable cause that the person was drinking under the influence. If there is probable cause, the person may be required to take the test due to the implied consent law in Prince William County.
If you are facing arrest due to drinking and driving charges, it is essential that you understand your legal rights and consult a local attorney right away. They can advise you on whether or not to take a blood alcohol content test. BAC tests in Prince William County DUI cases can heavily impact your defense.
Police Station Arrest Process
After somebody is arrested for a DUI in Virginia, they usually take it over to the police station and/or the magistrate depending on where there are. Usually, that can be in the exact same place they are taken in for the magistrate depending on where they are the magistrate will determine whether or not they are entitled to bond or whether or not they are going to be granted bond or released on personal recognizance. At that point, they will then either be let out on bond after they are processed through and by “processed through,” fingerprinted, picture taken, or they will go ahead and be held in the detention center.
Refusal to Take BAC Tests
There are two BAC tests in Prince William County DUI cases that law enfocement officials use to determine if someone was driving under the influence. Number one is the preliminary breath test that is taken at the scene. They offer it to the person as a way that they can just so the person has nothing to hide. Officers want the person to take it to help support the probable cause to arrest the person, to help strengthen their arrest.
A person should never take it. There is never a good reason for the person to take this test unless they have never had anything to drink in their entire life. There is not one drop of alcohol or drugs to the person’s body. That is the only time the person will want to take a preliminary breath test and that is pretty rare. The general rule should be refuse every single test.
Now, there is the other BAC test that the person is offered, they are bound by what is called the implied consent law here in the state of Virginia. Implied consent says that if a person is driving on a highway in the state of Virginia, they are required to submit to a breath or blood sample if there is probable cause to arrest the person for a DUI. A person can be charged with a separate crime of refusal, of refusing implied consent guidelines if the person is forced to or if the person refuses to.
That is where a person technically has to take it the BAC test. The person cannot refuse that unless there is no probable cause to arrest them. That is hard because a person is not going to be able to know what is probable cause and what is not probable cause as a layperson or somebody who does not know the law. When does the person refuse and do they not? That it is smart always to refuse the preliminary breath test so a person should never take that.
When to Refuse the Test
That it is smart always to refuse the preliminary breath test so a person should never take that.
If the person feels that they are pretty sober, if they feel like they did not really do anything when they were driving, go ahead and refuse the station tests because sometimes what will happen is somebody will look sober, sober, sober and then, at the station, they will blow and blow a really high BAC station at the station which then causes them to be convicted of DUI if the arrest comes in.
Sometimes, people will have bad driving behavior but not necessarily enough to support a DUI conviction and will not blow at the station and then they will not be convicted of a DUI. You really can still think about that whatever a person blows at the station, that is going to come into evidence.
Hiring a Lawyer
There are several reasons why a person should know their legal rights. If they are pulled over for driving under the influence, they may not know if they can refuse a blood alcohol content test. Usually, it is better to risk violating the implied consent law and getting a year suspension of a person’s license over having a DUI on their record forever. It is something that a person has to weigh and has to consider.
A seasoned attorney understands how BAC tests in Prince William County DUI cases can impact their defense. They can prepare for these blood alcohol content tests to show up in the prosecution. Depending on the circumstances of the case, as they challenge the evidence, an attorney can use the BAC test results in their defense.