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3 DUI Myths - Seattle DUI Defense

Posted Wednesday, January 31, 2018 by Lizanne Padula.

Recently we posted our article 3 DUI FAQ’s - Seattle DUI Defense which garnered significant traffic. As a follow up to that article we’ve decided to share 3 of the most common DUI Myths.

When you are facing a DUI in Washington State, a lot is at stake. After an arrest you’re likely reeling, wondering what is going to happen to you, your license, and what penalties and fines you will have to face. We have been helping people who were once in your shoes for over 15 years. We will defend your rights and help you make sense of the legal labyrinth of our criminal courts. Call us (425)883-3366 now for a free case consultation.

It is important for you to understand the criminal DUI process, what to expect, and what your rights are. Many people believe things about DUIs that are absolutely not true, so we are busting the top 3 DUI Myths.

Myth #1: If I blow over the legal limit I cannot defend myself against DUI charges.

This is absolutely not true. While a breathalyzer or blood alcohol test with results above the legal limit can be damaging, they are not the end of your defense. First, if the test was not administered according to Washington State law, or your rights were somehow violated during the test, or the test if faulty for some other reason, we can ask the court to suppress the evidence so that the prosecutor may not use it against you. Second, the prosecutor may have significant evidence that is harming to your defense, but we can still leverage weaknesses in the prosecution’s case to try to get a dismissal, or alternatively, get the charges reduced to lesser charges. In fact, most of the DUI cases we handle at Padula & Associates, LLC are reduced to lesser charges or dismissed entirely.

Myth #2: I must submit to field sobriety tests.

Field sobriety tests are voluntary. Washington State law does not require you to submit to field sobriety tests. If an officer asks you to exit your vehicle and complete a Standardized Field Sobriety Test (SFST), you have the right to politely refuse.

There are a few important things to know:

• A police officer may lead you to believe that you must take the SFSTs, but you are under no legal obligation to do so. Police officers are allowed to lie to you.

• In Washington State you are required to submit to a breath test or blood test following a lawful arrest.

Washington is an implied consent state, which means that when you were issued your driver license you agreed to submit to a breath test “for the purpose of determining the alcohol concentration” of your breath if the arresting officer has “reasonable grounds to believe the person had been driving or was in actual physical control of a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or any drug[.]” (RCW 46.20.308). If you refuse to submit to the breath test, the punishment is at a minimum license suspension for one year. (RCW 46.20.308(2)(a)).

Myth #3: DUI means driving under the influence of alcohol.

In the State of Washington a person can be found guilty of DUI while driving under the influence of “intoxicating liquor, marijuana, or any drug.” (RCW 46.61.502). It is not necessary for a person to be found to have a blood alcohol concentration over the legal limit of 0.08 or a THC concentration over the legal limit of 5.00 to be convicted for DUI. Certainly evidence of alcohol or THC concentration above the legal limit helps the prosecutor secure a conviction. However, showing that a person was driving (or in control of a vehicle) while “under the influence of or affected by” alcohol, marijuana, or any drug, or a combination of drugs, is sufficient to demonstrate a person is guilty of DUI under Washington State law. (RCW 46.61.502).

Consult With an Experienced Washington DUI Defense Attorney

The penalties and punishments for a DUI conviction in Washington State are steep. If you’re facing DUI charges or have questions about the penalties you may be facing, please contact us here or call (425)883-3366 for a free consultation.

Understand that every DUI case is different. Our experienced DUI defense attorneys will be able to evaluate the evidence against you and pinpoint the weaknesses in the Prosecution’s case that can be leveraged in your defense. When you hire the skilled DUI defense attorneys at Padula & Associates, LLC, we will fight to prevent the interruption of your ability to drive.

Not every DUI can be beat, but we are able to eliminate or reduce most of them. Hiring an experienced DUI defense attorney can help you get the best possible outcome in your case.

Our attorneys have outstanding reputations. Lizanne Padula is a tireless negotiator and a tenacious litigator. Padula & Associates, LLC will fiercely advocate on your behalf. For more than 20 years we have proudly defended the rights of people in King County, Snohomish County, and Washington State.

Call us 24/7 at 425-883-3366 or fill out this simple web form to schedule a free consultation with an experienced DUI defense attorney.