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What Evidence Can They Use Against me in a Los Angeles DMV Hearing?

  • September 1, 2017

    Are you facing a driving under the influence charge in Los Angeles and concerned about what will happen during your criminal trial? You should also think about what will happen during a hearing with the Department of Motor Vehicles. While the criminal court can make you pay a fine or sentence you to either jail or an alcohol program, the DMV can strip you of your license or suspend your license for several months or longer. You have just 10 days from the date of your arrest to prepare for this hearing. The DMV will assign a hearing officer to your case who can use evidence against you during the hearing to determine that you should lose your license.

    As long as you schedule your hearing within the 10 days given to you under law, you will have time to prepare and go over some of that evidence. Failing to call and make an appointment is the same as making an appointment and not showing up. The will forfeit your chance to a hearing and lead to the DMV deciding on its own whether to revoke or suspend your license.

    Though the prosecution will not be at the DMV hearing, you can still have your attorney present at the hearing. The DMV is a neutral party that looks at all positive and negative elements of the case, but it can still be hard for you to show that you deserve to keep your license. You should look at the evidence against you before the hearing to decide on the best way to defend yourself.

    BAC

    Under California law, those over the legal drinking age of 21 must have a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08 to be guilty of a DUI. State law also requires that officers take your BAC no more than three hours after the time that the investigation started. If the officer arrested you at the station but waited to long to give you a blood test or breathalyzer, you can request that the DMV not use this evidence. The DMV hearing officer can use the police report to see when the officer issued you that test.

    You and your attorney should check the police report to ensure that it clearly lists both the time of your arrest and the time that you took the test. If you can establish any type of doubt that the report is not accurate, you can can request that the DMV put aside this information when reviewing your case.

    Field Sobriety Test

    The DMV can use the results of a field sobriety test against you during the hearing too. This test requires that you do tasks that show you are sober such as standing and balancing on one foot, following a set path and answering some simple questions. Refusal to do this test while in the field can lead to an officer arresting you on suspicion of a DUI and taking you back to the station for a different test. If the DMV sees that you constantly refused to submit to these tests, it may decide to suspend your license.

    Injuries and Property Damage

    Other evidence that can go against you during this hearing include any property damage or injuries that you caused. If you drove under the influence, not another vehicle and hurt the driver of that vehicle or any passengers inside, the DMV will likely revoke or suspend your license. Any property damage that you caused to other vehicles on the road or property belonging to others can go against you too. This can help establish the reasons why the officer initially pulled you over also.

    Though the DMV should remain a neutral party, it often places a high level of importance on the evidence against a driver suspected of a DUI. That evidence can include the report written by the arresting officer and your BAC level. If you have any concerns that the DMV may take away your license or ban you from driving for six months or more, you should work with an attorney. Los Angeles DUI attorneys understand how DMV hearings work and can help you see how certain types of evidence can impact your case.

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