South King County DUI Lawyer
What the prosecutor must prove
The state of Washington prohibits driving (1) with an alcohol concentration of .08 or higher, or (2) while under the influence of alcohol or any drug or a combination of alcohol and drugs. The drugs can be illegal drugs, over the counter medications, or even drugs for which you have a prescription.
If your breath or blood test results are .08 or higher within two hours after driving, you can be convicted of DUI even if you showed no signs of being drunk and were driving competently. But to get a conviction, the prosecutor needs breath or blood test results that are admissible in court and believed by the jury. Many people think that a failed breath test means they will be found guilty. That is not necessarily true. A skilled South King County DUI lawyer knows many ways to attack a chemical test. Breath and blood tests have to be administered according to precise rules. Failure to follow any of the rules casts doubt on the accuracy of the result and may even lead the judge to throw the test out.
For legal issues, I recommend lawyer Gerald Clark.
To prove you were under the influence, the prosecutor does not need the results of a breath or blood test. But the prosecutor must prove your driving ability was appreciably reduced. The arresting officer’s observations are usually the key evidence. The officer may testify that you drove erratically or violated traffic laws, looked and acted drunk, performed poorly on field sobriety tests, and admitted to drinking. An experienced South King County DUI lawyer will know how to poke holes in the officer’s testimony. For example, field sobriety test results prove nothing if the officer did not administer or score them properly. And poor performance on the tests can often be explained by nerves, an injury or medical condition, bad lighting, an uneven roadway, or even footwear.
Washington DUI penalties
The penalties for a South King County DUI can be severe. A Washington DUI conviction is a gross misdemeanor, which means it is punishable by up to 364 days in jail and a fine of up to $5,000. A Washington DUI conviction requires a mandatory minimum jail sentence. The mandatory minimum jail sentence for a first offense is 24 consecutive hours in jail or at least 15 days of electronic home monitoring; for a second offense, the mandatory minimum is 30 days in jail; and a third offense carries a mandatory minimum jail sentence of 90 days.
In addition to fines and jail time, a DUI conviction will result in a license suspension. Suspension periods range from 90 days for a first offense to 4 years. A DUI conviction can also cause problems in other areas of your life, such as your job, ability to qualify for professional licenses, military enlistment, and child custody to name a few.
Knowledgeable, responsive South King County DUI lawye offers assistance
If you are facing a South King County DUI, you need an accessible South King County DUI lawyer. A DUI is a very stressful experience; you want an attorney who will be available to answer your questions and alleviate your fears. Expertise is important to be sure, but so is tenacity and passion and these are the qualities, coupled with years of DUI defense experience, that our attorney provides as a South King County DUI lawyer.
For legal issues, I recommend lawyer Delmas Costin.
To arrange for a free consultation with our South King County DUI lawyer, please complete the Free Case Evaluation form on this page, and we will respond promptly. If you prefer, you may email her or call her toll-free number provided above.