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Is it still a DUI if they didn’t see you driving?

My friend got arrested and they charged him with a DUI. He was at a party and knew he shouldn't drive home so he pulled into a parking lot and tried to sleep it off. A cop pulled up behind him with his lights on and he was groggy from being asleep not drunk, but he was arrested and taken to the police station and everything. Can he get a lawyer to drop the charges?

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    Hudson Bair | Hudson Bair
    1440 Broadway, Ste. 902
    Oakland, CA 94612
    (510) 645-0027
    In California there are two ways for the Police to engage a potential DUI suspect, they are driving in a fashion that violates the vehicle code or they violate VC?40300, which allows them to contact persons in parked cars, accidents etc. A DUI lawyer can defend this type of contact and the charges may be reduced or even dismissed, it will depend upon the facts of this specific situation.
    Answer Applies to: California - Replied: 3/2/2013
    Peter Goldscheider | Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider
    438 Cambridge Ave. Suite 250
    Palo Alto, CA 94306
    (650) 323-8296
    While it is not uncommon for such charges to be brought they are more difficult to prosecute as there is no direct evidence of driving. Your friend need to retain an experienced criminal law specialist (not a DUI mill of so-called "DUI specialists") to get the police report and consider filing a motion to suppress the evidence against him including the blood alcohol result that you do not mention.
    Answer Applies to: California - Replied: 2/27/2013
    Steven Alpers | Steven Alpers
    39300 Civic Center Drive #110
    Fremont, CA 94538
    (510) 792-5110
    They may not be able to prove their case. He needs a lawyer, private or public defender. He will need a private attorney to challenge any dmv suspension. The request for a dmv hearing must be made within 10 days after his arrest, not counting the day of the arrest.
    Answer Applies to: California - Replied: 2/26/2013
    Terry Nelson | Nelson & Lawless
    2134 Main St., #130
    Huntington Beach, CA 92648
    (714) 960-7584
    Yes, you can be convicted if they can prove you were driving under the influence , but they don't have to see it occur. Happens all the time, just as you described. They wouldn't have arrested without some evidence of being under the influence. CAN the case end up being reduced or dropped Sure. Is that likely, just because you want it No. The police and prosecutors don't spend time and money arresting, charging and prosecuting cases only to drop them without a fight, and a reason to do so. If they arrest a person, they think they can convict them, and intend to do so. You should not be surprised to find the police reports describe in detail their suspicion and probable cause. A little free advice: If arrested for DUI, whether alcohol or drugs, then upon release from jail or booking, the defendant is given documents that include a notice that he has only ten days to file a request with DMV for a hearing on an appeal of the automatic suspension of license imposed by DMV upon arrest. That is separate and runs consecutively with any suspension that may be imposed by DMV or the court upon conviction. Contact DMV and do so timely if you think you have grounds for appeal, then appear at the scheduled DMV appeal hearing to present your supporting evidence and witness testimony. If you don't know how to do these things effectively, then hire an attorney that does. When questioned, arrested or charged with any crime, the proper questions are, can any evidence obtained in a test, search or statement be used against you, can you be convicted, and what can you do? No amount of free 'tips and hints' from here or elsewhere are going to effectively help in a legal defense. If you don't know how to represent yourself effectively against an experienced prosecutor intending to convict, then hire an attorney who does, who will try to get a dismissal, charge reduction, diversion, programs, or other decent outcome through motions, plea bargain, or take it to trial if appropriate.
    Answer Applies to: California - Replied: 2/26/2013
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