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hat Constitutional Rights do I give up When I sign a Los Angeles DUI Advisement of Rights

  • September 1, 2017

    When an individual is stopped in Southern California on suspicion of DUI-driving under the influence, he or she is expected to appear before a criminal judge on specified dates for purposes of pleading the case. In case of a misdemeanor DUI, a Los Angeles DUI attorney can be allowed to appear in court in place of his or her client. Even though a misdemeanor is a serious offense, it still ranks below a felony charge. Often, an individual is charged of misdemeanor if he or she does not have a previous criminal record. Notably, the consequences of felony charges are more pronounced than in the case of misdemeanor.

    Before one is convicted of DUI, several factors must be proven. There must be proof that the person charged was driving the vehicle and a probable cause to make the officers to stop such an individual. In addition, there should be substantial blood alcohol to indicate that one was intoxicated.
    Arraignment is a term used to denote the first time that a person appears before the court. Here, the judge will ask the individual being charged whether he or she would wish to enter any plea concerning the accusations of driving under the influence. One is free to enter a plea of not guilty, guilty and no contest. When an individual opts to choose to enter a plea of no contest or guilty, a DUI Advertisement of Right, Waiver and Plea form shall be read to him and eventually signed. The form has an important section of Constitutional Rights. You must initial that you have understood and waived any of the listed rights.
    The first right that is indicated in the form is the right to a jury trial. The form outlines that the signer is entitled to a speedy and fair trial. The guiding principle is that an individual is presumed innocent until proven guilty by a jury of 12 peers. The hardest part is proving a person beyond reasonable doubt. When individuals make a decision of pleading guilty or no contest, they forfeit their rights.

    The second right on the form is the right to confront a witness. This authority gives a person or his or her attorney the right to pursue and cross-examine a witness who is testifying about the arrest. The other right is doing away with the right against self-incrimination. Any person who is arrested based on a suspicion of having committed a crime has the right to remain silent. This right protects one from incriminating against himself.

    For instance, assume that John is arrested on suspicion of DUI. Soon after, the police officer asks John if he had spent some time drinking that night. John has is supposed to remain silent because he not under any obligation to respond to the question. If John says that he had taken a few bottles, this statement is highly likely to be used against him in the court of law as he is tried for DUI. It is advisable for John to exercise his rights and remain silent to avoid making incriminating statements.

    When an individual decides to plead guilty or no contest, he or she will be waiving the right against self-incrimination. This is because such a person is accepting the fact that he is guilty and does not wish to make solid arguments against the charges.

    The right to produce evidence is the last right to be outlined in the DUI Advisement of Rights, Waivers and Plea form. This right entitles the person being charged to line up any witnesses seeking to testify. In addition, an individual is at liberty to avail the evidence that appeals most in his or her case. When a person decides to enter a plea of no contest or guilty, he is waiving his constitutional right. Before the form is initialed, an individual is asked to read and understand what each right entails. This strategy helps the court to ensure that the person charged knows that he is giving up on his rights.

    There may be weaknesses in prosecution’s case if a person feels that he was coerced to append his signature on the form or sign it without comprehending that the information contained in the form meant that he was giving up on his rights. It is for this reason that an individual is encouraged to enlist the services of an experienced Los Angeles Criminal Defense lawyer to know more about his or her rights and determine whether they have been violated.

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