Articles Posted in Criminal Law

Driving under the influence of alcohol can have dire consequences for drivers, passengers, pedestrians, and anyone else on the road. Understandably, law enforcement has cracked down on alcohol-related offenses in recent years, assigning fines, license suspension, and ongoing consequences that scale with the severity of the offense. While it’s good that our community is discouraging reckless driving habits, responsible drivers in the Phoenix area may get unjustly charged with a DUI offense and thus may face immediate license suspension. Even a first-time offense can carry serious implications, including license suspension and a criminal record. Rather than facing the consequences of a crime you did not commit, it’s best to seek the counsel of an experience DUI defense lawyer.  

DUI Offenses in Arizona

Like many states, Arizona has a strict policy regarding the use of one’s license following a DUI conviction. In most cases, a first-time DUI conviction carries a sentence including the suspension of one’s license for at least 90 days. Depending on the circumstances of the charges, this suspension may continue for up to a year.

Driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs can have serious legal consequences, and for a good reason: impaired drivers are a real threat to themselves and others. Accordingly, numerous tests gauge whether a suspected driver is indeed under the influence, and to what extent. However, like many types of tests, it is possible for a false-positive to arise, resulting in unfair DUI charges. In such cases, it is necessary to have an experienced and knowledgeable DUI defense lawyer who can help bring to light why the charges are unjust.

In the case of urine testing, multiple factors may lead to a false-positive result. Aside from human error during testing, a few assumptions about the driver may be made while administering the test or interpreting its results. Don’t allow one test to tell your story for you; let our Phoenix legal team represent your case equitably.

Why Are Urine Tests Administered?

DUI laws and penalties have become increasingly stringent over time, and for a good reason: drinking and driving can have grave consequences for all parties involved. These laws are therefore helpful from a general perspective, but they can also lead to unfair consequences for undeserving drivers. This can be especially problematic when innocent drivers are suspected of being intoxicated or when police base their suspicions of DUI on unfounded evidence.

If you have been charged with DUI in the Phoenix area, speak with experienced DUI attorneys to review your case. By working with a knowledgeable lawyer who specializes in DUI charges, and by understanding the standard legal proceedings, you can increase your chances of a fair and satisfactory outcome. 

DUI Case Stages

DUI is a serious crime in Arizona, carrying multiple penalties for even a first offense. These penalties are even stricter against underage drinkers, who can be charged with DUI for as much as a single drink. If the gravity of these consequences were not already evident, they were recently brought to the attention of the Phoenix, Tempe, and Mesa communities when 237 underage drinkers were arrested over the first week of April. This crackdown is likely the result of increased pressure from Arizona State University (ASU) and the surrounding community to discourage students from underage drinking and especially driving while intoxicated.

The Arrests

Over the first weekend of April, 51 officers from multiple law enforcement agencies sought out parties in and around the ASU campus. Their efforts were focused in a particular area of Tempe known for its collegiate nightlife, often referred to as “Loud Party Corridor.” By the end of the weekend, a total of 237 people were arrested for underage consumption or possession of alcohol, as well as DUI, which accounted for 67 of the arrests.   

As one of the most skilled and knowledgeable DUI attorneys in the nation, James E. Novak is intimately aware of Arizona DUI statistics and laws, and knows how to use his knowledge to the benefit of his clients. If you have been charged with DUI, you probably already know that our state’s penalties are among the toughest in the country. Don’t be just another statistic. With James E. Novak in your corner, you help to ensure that you will achieve the best possible result in your circumstances.

Some Sobering DUI Statistics

Considering the state’s tough stance against driving under the influence of alcohol, it should come as no surprise that Arizona ranked among the top ten states in terms of DUI arrests in 2013. The full top-ten list includes:

Arizona imposes some of the harshest DUI penalties in the United States; however, it also allows those convicted of DUI the opportunity to get back out on the road as long as they install ignition interlock devices in their automobiles. Any driver whose license is suspended or revoked as a result of a DUI must have such devices installed in their vehicles, at their own expense, as a condition of being allowed to operate their vehicles once again.

In Mesa, ignition interlock device installation, removal, and monitoring are available at automotive shops at varying prices. If you have been required to install an ignition interlock device in your car, truck, or other automotive vehicle as a result of a DUI, it is important to note that not all of these devices are created equal. Cut-rate devices can register false positives, confusing cigarette smoke or vehicle exhaust for alcohol and preventing you from driving. It is important that you do your homework and select the device that will best enable you to exercise your right to drive.

If you are facing DUI charges and wish to avoid the conviction that will force you to install an ignition interlock device in your vehicle, we encourage you to have your case evaluated as soon as possible by James E. Novak, one of the most experienced and successful DUI attorneys in the state.

In the state of Arizona, DUI and jail time go hand in hand. The state’s DUI penalties are among the toughest in the nation, and you can bet that if you are convicted of a DUI, you will spend at least 24 hours in jail. That’s one of the reasons why those who are arrested for DUI are encouraged to secure the services of experienced DUI attorneys, such as James E. Novak. With skilled representation, you stand a chance of avoiding serious penalties such as jail time. Without that representation, you will almost certainly find yourself behind bars, at least for a day.

Potential Jail Sentences for DUI Offenses

If you are convicted of a DUI offense, the amount of time you spend in jail will depend on the circumstances of your case, your blood alcohol content (BAC) level, and your history (if any) of DUI convictions. Again, please understand that if you are convicted, there is no way for you to avoid jail time. You will spend time in jail, period.

There’s no question that a DUI conviction will affect your life in more ways than you can possibly imagine. Even after you are permitted to drive again, getting insurance may prove a very difficult task. Especially in a state with DUI laws as tough as those in Arizona, DUI and auto insurance problems practically go hand and hand.

Among DUI attorneys, James E. Novak is among the most experienced and dedicated. He can help to ensure that your rights are protected in the event that you have been charged with a DUI and fight to minimize its impact on your life. If there is a possibility of getting your charges dropped or reduced, you can rest assured that Mr. Novak will work tirelessly to make it happen. Ultimately, having a lawyer who can provide the strongest possible DUI defense is the surest way to avoid the headaches that accompany a DUI conviction, including dramatically increased auto insurance rates.

If you have already been convicted of a DUI and are simply searching for information about getting auto insurance after a DUI, we invite you to read on.

Arizona is known as one of the toughest states in the union with regard to DUI laws for good reason. Even misdemeanor DUIs carry with them consequences that can haunt a person for a lifetime. It stands to reason, then, that Arizona DUI felony charges should be avoided at all costs.

If you are facing either misdemeanor or felony DUI charges, it is in your best interests to consult an experienced attorney with a track record of success. Among DUI attorneys in the state, James Novak has insight into the potential arguments of the state’s prosecutors because he used to be a prosecutor. He understands how prosecutors think, which allows him to devise highly effective defense strategies that improve his clients’ chances of a favorable outcome.

Misdemeanor DUI Charges in Arizona

There is no state in the union with tougher drunk driving laws than the state of Arizona. This is why those facing Tempe DUI charges need to secure the services of an experienced defense attorney with a known track record of success, such as James E. Novak. Prosecutors want to win cases, and if they know that a defendant has hired a lawyer who will fight the charges all the way to a jury verdict, forcing them to prove their case at every stage, that defendant will stand a better chance of keeping a DUI charge off his or her record.

Of course, it is important for those facing DUI charges to understand exactly what their rights are and what the laws of Arizona allow and disallow on the part of their DUI attorneys. For example, most jurisdictions in Arizona do not allow for DUI charges to be pled down to reckless driving charges; however, prosecutors in Tempe are occasionally open to plea bargains, assuming that the right circumstances are present. James E. Novak knows when it is possible to aim for a reduced charge, when it is best to try for a dismissal, and when it is necessary to try a case to verdict.

There Is No “Wet Reckless” in Arizona

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