Am I getting a DUI

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Latest post Tue, Sep 8 2015 5:35 AM by David Hunter. 9 replies.
  • Mon, Aug 11 2014 4:48 PM

    • C. M. Burns
      Consumer
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    • Joined on Mon, Aug 11 2014
    • CA
    • Posts 2

    Am I getting a DUI

    Back in March I was in an accident. I had been drinking and crashed my car. It was in rural area and I had no passengers so there was no damage to property other than my car and nobody other than me was injured. The police came and there was never a field sobriety test performed and they weren't able to perform the breathalyzer test because my injuries prevented me from blowing in the device for as long as they needed. I was never booked because I went straight to the hospital. I consented to a blood test, but the doctor never performed the blood test. I've been calling the DA's office for 5 months asking if a court date has been set and the answer has been no up until today. Today they told me that I had to call the courthouse and set my court date with them because they can't set my court date as I was never booked for the DUI. So I have a few questions...
    1) Is it typical for the DA's office to request a person being charged with a DUI to call the courthouse and schedule their own court date? I was told (by the DA's office)that they would set the court date themselves and send a notice in the mail.
    2) Should I even call to set my court date? If they can't set my court date because they didn't book me at the time of the accident then why should I help them charge me with a DUI?
    3) Under the circumstances, is there even enough to charge me with a DUI? I was never booked, there was no field sobriety or breathalyzer test performed, and there was no blood test performed.

  • Mon, Aug 11 2014 5:40 PM In reply to

    Re: Am I getting a DUI

    C. M. Burns:
    1) Is it typical for the DA's office to request a person being charged with a DUI to call the courthouse and schedule their own court date?

    No, but then it's not typical for someone to keep calling the DA over and over again over 5 months asking if he's going to be charged, either. (That's something I would not have recommended you do, by the way. It's not a good idea to keep something like this constantly in the mind of the prosecutors. It might have been something they'd have just let go or forgotten about if you hadn't kept reminding them of it.) But as long as they had you on the phone anyway, might as well ask you to call and set the court date. Less work for the state.

    C. M. Burns:
    2) Should I even call to set my court date? If they can't set my court date because they didn't book me at the time of the accident then why should I help them charge me with a DUI?

    You'll need to talk to a local lawyer about that. If you don't do it, maybe nothing will ever happen with it. On the other hand, maybe what will happen instead is that you get picked up and arrested at some very bad time on a warrant issued for your arrest and then you appear at court at a time that is not at all good for you.

    C. M. Burns:
    3) Under the circumstances, is there even enough to charge me with a DUI? I was never booked, there was no field sobriety or breathalyzer test performed, and there was no blood test performed.

    Well, CA law, like most other states, has two parts to its DUI statute. One part makes it illegal to drive if your BAC is .08 or greater. That offense the state wouldn't be able to pursue here because no test was ever done to determine your BAC level. But the other part makes it illegal drive if you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Under the influence meaning that your ability to drive has been impaired by alcohol or drugs. If the state has evidence that you were drinking then that along with the single car accident may be sufficient to make the case, since the accident may be evidence that you were impaired. 

    I strongly suggest you seek advice from a DUI lawyer before you do anything else now that the state has indicated you are being charged. This is not a good do it yourself project. 

  • Mon, Aug 11 2014 6:22 PM In reply to


    Re: Am I getting a DUI

    C. M. Burns:
    1) Is it typical for the DA's office to request a person being charged with a DUI to call the courthouse and schedule their own court date? I was told (by the DA's office)that they would set the court date themselves and send a notice in the mail.

    Usually they send a letter advising you that charges have been filed and a court date set for your arraignment.  If you don't show up, the court issues a warrant.  They don't need to set the case on calendar to get the arrest warrant.

    C. M. Burns:
    2) Should I even call to set my court date? If they can't set my court date because they didn't book me at the time of the accident then why should I help them charge me with a DUI?

    That may be a matter of local practice but it's not required that you be arrested and booked in order for charges to be filed. I'd suggest you consult a local criminal defense attorney.

    C. M. Burns:
    3) Under the circumstances, is there even enough to charge me with a DUI? I was never booked, there was no field sobriety or breathalyzer test performed, and there was no blood test performed.

    CA has 2 sections to the basic DUI law--the first covers driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs and the second covers driving with a BAC over .08.  When you crash your car and the cops smell alcohol on you, probably see bloodshot eyes and slurred speech, the DA can convince a jury that you had imbibed alcohol to the extent that you were unable to drive in the same manner as a reasonably sober person.  As I said above, consult a local attorney.

  • Mon, Aug 11 2014 6:28 PM In reply to

    • Drew
      Consumer
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Thu, Mar 30 2000
    • PA
    • Posts 51,368

    Re: Am I getting a DUI

    You have done too much already...read taxagents last paragraph, follow,same....



  • Tue, Aug 12 2014 1:13 PM In reply to

    • C. M. Burns
      Consumer
    • Not Ranked
    • Joined on Mon, Aug 11 2014
    • CA
    • Posts 2

    Re: Am I getting a DUI

    Thanks for the response. The only reason I called the DA at all was to make sure I didn't get an arrest warrent for not appearing in court. I've known some people who have had warrents b/c they didn't show up to court even though they never recieved notice to appear in court. I was hoping to get some insight other than "seek legal advice from a local lawyer".

  • Tue, Aug 12 2014 1:49 PM In reply to

    Re: Am I getting a DUI

    C. M. Burns:
    I was hoping to get some insight other than "seek legal advice from a local lawyer".

    The problem is that the question you asked — whether to call to set the court date — isn't one with a universal yes or no answer. It depends on the local practices of the cops, prosecutors, and judges in the county where the DUI is to be prosecuted. Yes, one of the risks if you don't do it is that an arrest warrant is issued and you get picked up on that later, and that's probably going to end up not being at a good time and might mess a lot of things up for you. But without knowing all the details of your situation and the practices in that local court and county, it's not possible to give you a definitive answer on a message board forum like this one. That's why there are lawyers, to advise you on stuff like this. You'll need a lawyer for the DUI anway, so you might as well find one now and get advice on what to do. The attorney can handle this matter to ensure necessary court dates are not missed and you don't end up getting arrested out of the blue somewhere.

  • Tue, Jan 20 2015 1:58 AM In reply to

    • janifers14
      Consumer
    • Not Ranked
    • Joined on Mon, Jan 12 2015
    • CA
    • Posts 28

    Re: Am I getting a DUI

    Did you take any legal advice from an expert DUI Lawyer in your state. 

    Take some legal advice from him about what to do next.

  • Sun, May 24 2015 10:15 PM In reply to

    • MCarter
      Consumer
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    • Joined on Mon, May 25 2015
    • Posts 1

    Re: Am I getting a DUI

    I agree to what others have said, you have made a mistake by phoning them consistently and asking of the date. Now the best option in fromt of you is to consult a good criminal defence lawyer in your state and ask for their advice. They will be able to guide you out of this situation. The fact that you ahven't been charged for DUI does hold things slightly in your favour but don't count too much on it. All the best!

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