Given the manner in which Arizona DUI laws are written and enforced, most people who are arrested and charged with an Arizona DUI offense have no idea that they were over the legal limit or were still under the influence of an intoxicating substance. Thus, the fact that Arizona has one of the strictest – if not the strictest –penalty schemes for driving under the influence creates a situation where a motorist may face severe consequences for violating a law they never knew they were breaking.
In Arizona, like most other states, it is illegal to drive with a blood-alcohol content (BAC) of .08 or above. However, Arizona law is unique in that it creates “presumptions” depending on a motorist’s BAC. For example:
- a motorist whose BAC is less than .05 is presumed not to be intoxicated;
- a motorist with a BAC over .08 is presumed to be intoxicated; and
- there is no presumption of intoxication for motorists with BACs between .05 and .08.