Fourth DUI Lawyer Costa Mesa
If you have received a 4th DUI in Costa Mesa for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, because you were given a breath, urine, or blood test that was positive for the presence of alcohol or drugs, you should contact Team DUI Costa Mesa to get in touch with a law firm that works with a team of professionals on the matter and that knows how to handle those particular kinds of DUI charges.Call Now (949) 954-7729
If you have been given a breath, blood, or urine test that was positive for alcohol or drugs, it is entirely possible that you were not under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Factors including frequency of use, body weight and size as well as metabolic rate all help to show that, although there may have been alcohol or drugs in your system, you were not in fact under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Furthermore, the Prosecution must show “actual impairment”. If you call Team DUI Costa Mesa today, we can order a blood split from a certified specialist with whom we work frequently to negate the presence of drugs or alternatively, to show no actual impairment due to prior use of drugs.
If you are found guilty of a 4th DUI in Costa Mesa then the punishment will likely include a mandatory jail sentence, probation, fines, DUI school, and a driver’s license suspension. To protect yourself from these serious punishments, call Team DUI Costa Mesa today.
A 4th DUI in Costa Mesa for alcohol or drugs often occurs when a driver who has ingested alcohol or drugs is stopped for a minor traffic violation and the police officer notices something that indicates the driver is intoxicated or high. The officer may smell alcohol or drugs, or he may see empty bottles or drug paraphernalia, or he may hear someone make an incriminating statement. The officer may have stopped the driver because he noticed the vehicle swerving or other suspicious circumstances.
A 4th DUI in Costa Mesa is generally a misdemeanor, unless there are aggravating circumstances such as bodily injury to another person. Although a 4th DUI in Costa Mesa is still a misdemeanor, most courts will sentence a guilty defendant to some jail time. It is important to call Team DUI today so that we can get started on your case and try to keep you out of jail.
A 4th DUI in Costa Mesa is also subject to a DMV suspension of your driving privileges. You only have a short period of time, usually 10 days or less, to challenge a DMV license suspension. If you don’t challenge the DMV within 10 days then your license will be automatically suspended in 30 days. Team DUI Costa Mesa can fight the DMV so that you may be able to keep your license, or get a restricted license or ignition interlock device.
If your 1st DUI occurred more than 10 years ago, or if your 1st DUI occurred in another jurisdiction, Team DUI Costa Mesa may be able to get your 4th DUI in Costa Mesa case lowered to a 1st DUI before or at the preliminary hearing.
A 4th DUI for alcohol or drugs falls under the law for a DUI in Costa Mesa, however the punishments are more severe.
First, let DUI Lawyers in Costa Mesa give you the relevant law. The relevant portion of the law that is applicable to a 4th DUI in Costa Mesa is as follows:
CVC 23152 Driving Under Influence of Alcohol or Drugs
- It is unlawful for a person who is under the influence of any alcoholic beverage to drive a vehicle.
It is unlawful for a person who has 0.08 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood to drive a vehicle.
For purposes of this article and Section 34501.16, percent, by weight, of alcohol in a person's blood is based upon grams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood or grams of alcohol per 210 liters of breath.
- It is unlawful for a person who is addicted to the use of any drug to drive a vehicle. This subdivision shall not apply to a person who is participating in a narcotic treatment program approved pursuant to Article 3 (commencing with Section 11875) of Chapter 1 of Part 3 of Division 10.5 of the Health and Safety Code.
It is unlawful for a person who has 0.04 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood to drive a commercial motor vehicle, as defined in Section 15210.
In any prosecution under this subdivision, it is a rebuttable presumption that the person had 0.04 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood at the time of driving the vehicle if the person had 0.04 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood at the time of the performance of a chemical test within three hours after the driving.
- It is unlawful for a person who is under the influence of any drug to drive a vehicle.
It is unlawful for a person who is under the combined influence of any alcoholic beverage and drug to drive a vehicle.
[The above law was amended and reinstated to include the new narcotics treatment program approved by the Health and Safety Code.]
Basically, a 4th DUI for alcohol can be charged in one of two ways: by showing actual impairment by alcohol or drugs while driving and by the statutory Blood Alcohol Limits. Thus, Police can charge you because your breath or blood exceeded a .08 blood alcohol content, or because you were actually impaired while driving, despite having a blood alcohol content of less than .08.
For 4th Drug DUIs, there is no magic number set by law that allows police to arrest you. Police must show actual impairment by a drug. Essentially, a drug is any substance other than alcohol that can impair driving ability by affecting your nervous system, brain or muscles. (CVC § 312.)
Punishments for a 4th DUI in Costa Mesa vary depending in where you were arrested and which court your case is handled in. Generally, there are several possible outcomes of your case.
Initially, you could plead guilty and suffer the penalties below. However, if you plead not guilty then we can ask the prosecutor to lower the charge to a less serious traffic violation. If plea bargaining is unsuccessful, then DUI Lawyers Costa Mesa can challenge the prosecution’s evidence at the preliminary hearing. Your case could be dismissed at the preliminary hearing if the judge finds that the police didn’t follow the law. After the preliminary hearing DUI Lawyers Costa Mesa can talk to the prosecutor again to seek a lower charge now that their evidence has been challenged.
If your case is not dismissed, and we cannot successfully get the prosecutor to lower your charges, then we prepare for trial. DUI Lawyers Costa Mesa consults with an expert witness who, if necessary, can testify that you were not impaired or that the tests are invalid. After the trial, you could be found not guilty.
However, if you are found guilty, then the punishment will likely include a prison sentence, a mandatory jail sentence, probation, fines, DUI school, and a driver’s license suspension. Even if you are found guilty, DUI Lawyers Costa Mesa may be able to help you get a temporary hardship or work driver’s license. Also, DUI Lawyers Costa Mesa may be able to get you driving again with an ignition interlock device that tests the driver’s breath for alcohol.
The law regarding the punishment for a 4th DUI in Costa Mesa is listed below. However, don’t let a confusing law stand in the way of beating your DUI. Call DUI Lawyers Costa Mesa today and we can go over the details of your case, and explain how this confusing law will affect you.
§ 23550. Multiple offenses within 10 years; punishment; habitual traffic offender designation
(a) If a person is convicted of a violation of Section 23152 and the offense occurred within 10 years of three or more separate violations of Section 23103, as specified in Section 23103.5, or Section 23152 or 23153, or any combination thereof, that resulted in convictions, that person shall be punished by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 of the Penal Code, or in a county jail for not less than 180 days nor more than one year, and by a fine of not less than three hundred ninety dollars ($390) nor more than one thousand dollars ($1,000). The person's privilege to operate a motor vehicle shall be revoked by the Department of Motor Vehicles pursuant to paragraph (7) of subdivision (a) of Section 13352. The court shall require the person to surrender the driver's license to the court in accordance with Section 13550.
(b) A person convicted of a violation of Section 23152 punishable under this section shall be designated as a habitual traffic offender for a period of three years, subsequent to the conviction. The person shall be advised of this designation pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 13350.
§ 23552. Additional conditions of probation for multiple offenses; condition upon restoration of driving privilege
(a)(1) If the court grants probation to a person punished under Section 23550, in addition to the provisions of Section 23600 and any other terms and conditions imposed by the court, the court shall impose as conditions of probation that the person be confined in a county jail for at least 180 days but not more than one year and pay a fine of at least three hundred ninety dollars ($390) but not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000).
(2) Fourth DUI- License Revocation
(b) In addition to subdivision (a), if the court grants probation to any person punished under Section 23550, the court may order as a condition of probation that the person participate, for at least 30 months subsequent to the underlying conviction and in a manner satisfactory to the court, in a driving-under-the-influence program licensed pursuant to Section 11836 of the Health and Safety Code. In lieu of the minimum term of imprisonment in subdivision (a), the court shall impose as a condition of probation under this subdivision that the person be confined in the county jail for at least 30 days but not more than one year. The court shall not order the treatment prescribed by this subdivision unless the person makes a specific request and shows good cause for the order, whether or not the person has previously completed a treatment program pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 23542 or paragraph (4) of subdivision (b) of Section 23562. In order to enable all required persons to participate, each person shall pay the program costs commensurate with the person's ability to pay as determined pursuant to Section 11837.4 of the Health and Safety Code. No condition of probation required pursuant to this subdivision is a basis for reducing any other probation requirement in this section or Section 23600 or for avoiding the mandatory license revocation provisions of paragraph (7) of subdivision (a) of Section 13352.
(c) In addition to Section 23600 and subdivision (a), if the court grants probation to any person punished under Section 23550 who has not previously completed a treatment program pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 23542 or paragraph (4) of subdivision (b) of Section 23562, and unless the person is ordered to participate in, and complete, a program under subdivision (b), the court shall impose as a condition of probation that the person, subsequent to the date of the current violation, enroll in and participate, for at least 18 months and in a manner satisfactory to the court, in a driving-under-the- influence program licensed pursuant to Section 11836 of the Health and Safety Code, as designated by the court.
(1) Notwithstanding Section 1203a of the Penal Code, a period of probation not less than three nor more than five years; provided, however, that if the maximum sentence provided for the offense may exceed five years in the state prison, the period during which the sentence may be suspended and terms of probation enforced may be for a longer period than three years but may not exceed the maximum time for which sentence of imprisonment may be pronounced.
(2) A requirement that the person shall not drive a vehicle with any measurable amount of alcohol in his or her blood.
(3) A requirement that the person, if arrested for a violation of Section 23152 or 23153, shall not refuse to submit to a chemical test of his or her blood, breath, or urine, pursuant to Section 23612, for the purpose of determining the alcoholic content of his or her blood.
(4) A requirement that the person shall not commit any criminal offense.
(c) The court shall not absolve a person who is convicted of a violation of Section 23152 or 23153 from the obligation of spending the minimum time in confinement, if any, or of paying the minimum fine imposed by law.
1. 4th DUI Defense Costa Mesa, Challenge the Breathalyzer Caibration and Maintenance
DUI Lawyers Costa Mesa aggressively challenges breath, blood, and urine test results. The machines used to test your breath, blood, or urine are subject to many challenges as well, including that the machines were not calibrated or maintained properly. There are dozens of reasons that a Breathalyzer test can end with inaccurate results. Improper handling, storage, and testing methods often lead to junk evidence that is inadmissible in court.
2. 4th DUI Defense Costa Mesa, Challenge the Police Testimony or Evidence
Our DUI defense team can also take the police officer to court to make him or her testify as to their knowledge of DUI investigations, and their methods of evidence collection. Your case may be dismissed at this preliminary hearing if the Judge finds that the Officer did not follow the law while investigating your case.
Also, if the police officer did not stop you for the right reasons or had no reason at all, we can argue that the Officer had no probable cause or reasonable suspicion to stop you, and it may be possible that the Prosecution or Judge will dismiss the case.
Depending on the circumstances of your case, an argument is that you were not actually driving the vehicle. It is possible that an Officer did not witness you driving, or that you were merely sitting in a parked vehicle. Depending on the circumstances of your case, DUI Lawyers Costa Mesa may be able to convince the court that there is insufficient evidence to prove you were driving.
3. 4th DUI Defense Costa Mesa, Past DUIS Do Not County
If your prior DUIs occurred more than 10 years ago, or if your prior DUIs occurred in another jurisdiction, DUI Lawyers Costa Mesa may be able to get your 3rd DUI case lowered to a 1st DUI before or at the preliminary hearing.
If you are pulled over by a police officer and it is discovered that you have been drinking or taking drugs, and you are then charged with a DUI, there are plausible defenses to such a case, including the defense that you are not “actually impaired”.
For an individual to be guilty of driving while under the influence of drugs, it is not enough that the drug could impair an individual's driving ability or that the person is under the influence to some detectible degree. Rather, the drug must actually impair the individual's driving ability. Depending on the amount of the drug in your system at the time, we can make a case that you were not actually impaired.
Drugs affect people differently depending on their height, weight, body fat, and metabolism. Also, a person’s particular tolerance (a built up immunity to a drug’s effect by extended use) may mean that they will need more of a drug to feel the same effect as someone who does not regularly use the drug. DUI Lawyers Costa Mesa can bring a qualified expert to testify in court about how these factors impact your case.
Police attempt to show actual impairment by blood or urine tests. However, blood and urine tests are subject to many challenges, including that the police did not follow storage and handling procedures they are required by law to follow. Also, additional blood tests by DUI Lawyers Costa Mesa can show that you were not actually impaired, and thus not guilty. Our team of lawyers would ask for a blood split to determine when the last time the drug was used, and if so, the relative quantity of the drug. If we can show that the driver was not actually impaired by drugs, then a 4th DUI for drugs may not stick in Court.
Contact Team DUI Costa Mesa today for a free and confidential consultation regarding your case. We will look at your personal history and the facts surrounding the charges against you, and then we can discuss possible outcomes with you at no cost.