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Fighting Drunk Driving Charges Involving Low Blood Alcohol Readings

  • September 1, 2017

    If you are arrested for DUI, there are several factors that the Los Angeles prosecutor will look at before you are given your sentence. These factors include if your drunk driving caused an accident, whether or not it is the first time you are arrested, and your blood alcohol level.

    When it comes to the alcohol content in your system, the higher the level is, the more difficult it is to win the case. There will also be a more severe punishment for the driver. In general, prosecutors in Los Angeles will not file a case if the blood alcohol of the driver is lower than 0.08% by volume. The number is based on earlier studies in which it was proven that a person will not be able to drive properly like sober people if the blood alcohol is 0.08% or higher.

    High Blood Alcohol Content (BAC)

    There is no need for science to say that it is more dangerous to both the driver and the public if there is high blood alcohol content in the system. If the BAC is near 0.15%, the driving under the influence of alcohol charge is much more serious. It is even worse if the alcohol level in the driver’s system is above 0.20%. That driver is considered dangerous and reckless.

    At first, there was no set alcohol level for DUI. However, as time passed and scientists began to understand the negative effects of alcohol, the state adopted laws. It was primarily specified that it was illegal to drive when the alcohol level is at 0.15%. Later on, it became 0.10% until it is what it is now, which is set to 0.08%. For minors, a DUI charge is imposed when the alcohol level is 0.05%.

    According to experts, a person who drinks alcohol – even if it is just one glass – will be different when it comes to driving. Often, the intoxicated driver will have much slower reaction times, which makes him or her a dangerous driver.

    What If Your BAC is Lower than the Illegal Level?

    As mentioned, drunk driving in Los Angeles is set to a legal alcohol limit of 0.08%. In California, there are two separate crimes for prosecuting a DUI case:

    California Vehicle Code Section 23152(a) in which it is required that the prosecution sees impairment s part of evidence for the criminal charge (DUI)

    California Vehicle Code Section 23152(b) in which it is required that the blood alcohol content is more than the legal alcohol limit in the driver’s system

    It is important that the lawyer you hire for your case can help defend you against the two crimes stated above. In the second section, it is mostly defended by proving the measuring equipment for alcohol levels in the blood is unreliable or has been contaminated of blood or breath sample. As for the first section, a driver may be defended by his or her lawyer by questioning the reliability of the arresting officer’s observation.

    However, it is true that if there is evidence that there is alcohol in the body of the driver, he or she can be prosecuted using the first section. This is because some government experts will attest that most people become intoxicated and their driving becomes impaired if their alcohol levels are at least 0.05%.

    If your blood alcohol level is lower than the legal alcohol limit, a prosecutor may not file a case. However, it is possible that most prosecutors will still pursue the charge. In fact, it is common for the Orange County District Attorney Office to put a DUI case on trial if the alcohol level is 0.07% or lower. This is also common in some places of the greater Los Angeles in California.

    If your case does go to trial even though your alcohol level is lower than the legal limit, there will typically be an expert who will provide his or her opinion on the matter. Alternatively, some prosecutors would use the change in alcohol level from the time of the arrest and the time you were driving. It will be used to argue that you were actually driving above the specified alcohol limit.

    Nevertheless, if you have a trustworthy lawyer who can prove the test result was inaccurate or that the test performed was unlawful depending on your situation.

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