Are you facing jail time or a loss of security clearance because of a DUI? Get the answers you need to protect your rights
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What is the Basic Analysis of a Virginia DUI case?
There are many issues that can come up in drunk driving case. DUI defense is a technical and constantly changing area of the law. However, at the core of any analysis, are three main issues: (1) Was there reasonable suspicion for the stop? (2) Was there probable cause for the arrest? (3) Is there proof beyond a reasonable doubt? Each of these issues has been separately written about on this site and the links are provided below.
Analysis of a Virginia DUI Case
- Evaluating Reasonable Suspicion for the Stop
- Determining Whether there was Probable Cause for the Arrest
- Evaluating the Evidence to Asses Probable Cause
Proof Beyond a Reasonable Doubt of DUI in Virginia
The final stage of the analysis is "reasonable doubt" - which is the ultimate standard in any criminal case and requires a weighing of all of the facts and circumstances in the case. Any cruiser or body cam footage will be critical in this analysis.
Seek a Fairfax DUI Attorney to Analyze Your Fairfax DUI
Call 703-556-0004 or use the Contact Us box to schedule a free consultation with Fairfax Virginia DUI DWI Defense Lawyer. We will analyze your Fairfax case from the perspective of a former Fairfax County prosecutor who has an inside understanding of the Fairfax system you will face.
What Process Takes Place After I am Charged with DWI in Fairfax County?
After you are charged with DUI/DWI (drunk driving) in Fairfax County you will be given a court date. In Fairfax County, this is used to be a trial date. However, the system has been greatly modified. Now, your initial court date is an arraignment.
Arraignment for DWI/DUI in Fairfax County
At the arraignment in Fairfax County, the judge will advise you of the nature of the charges you face. The judge will advise you that you need to hire an attorney. The judge will then set another court date in about 7 days for you to come back to court with proof that you hired a lawyer. This is called an IAD or Information on Attorney Date.
You must appear at these hearings if you have not hired a lawyer. They are a condition of your bond, even if you were released on personal recognizance bond. If you fail to appear, the judge will issue a bench warrant for your arrest and a additional criminal charge for Failure to Appear will be authorized.
However, if you hire a lawyer before the arraignment, both the arraignment and IAD hearings are waived and removed from the docket. You will not need to appear. The court will simply set the first "real" court date about 2 months out. This is an adjudicatory date.
Your First "Real" Court Date for DWI/DUI in Fairfax
Your first "real" or adjudicatory date in Fairfax County is scheduled for discovery. The officer will be there, but the prosecutor is not required to have the breath machine operator or any other witness there. Rather, this is an opportunity for the prosecutor to provide a copy of the cruiser video and body cam footage, if there is such footage, and other details of the event.
After discovery is provided, the case will be continued to one of the officer's pre-set court dates one to two months out. At that hearing, the case will either come to a negotiated resolution or proceed to trial.
Consultation with a Fairfax DWI & DUI Lawyer
If you have been charged with DWI or DUI in Fairfax County, you need to speak with an attorney that has significant expertise in DUI law and the jurisdiction where you are charged - Fairfax County.
To talk with a former Fairfax County prosecutor and Fairfax Virginia DUI DWI Defense Lawyer that has handheld many cases on both sides of the system in Fairfax, call 703-556-0004 or use the Contact Us page to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.
We will analyze your Fairfax case from the perspective of a former Fairfax County prosecutor who has an inside understanding of the Fairfax system you face.
What Will Happen to My License if I am Convicted of DWI/DUI in Virginia?The answer to this question depends largely on the facts and circumstances of your individual case, including your blood alcohol level, whether it is a first or subsequent offense, and whether there are any aggravating circumstances present.
License Suspension for First Offense DUI in VirginiaIf the case is a standard DWI/DUI, with a BAC below .15, generally your license will be suspended for 12 months; however, the Fairfax County or Northern Virginia judge will most likely grant restricted driving privileges that cover driving to and from school, work, medical appointments, etc.Unfortunately, judges do not have complete discretion to grant any driving privileges you ask for. The categories of driving that can be authorized under a restricted license are set by the Virginia Code and judges have no authority to go outside the bounds the legislature has established.For higher BACs on a first offense, the judge may require that you start ASAP and receive a favorable evaluation before authorizing a restricted license. If you have a high BAC, you should speak to our office because there may be things you can do in advance of court to help assure your restricted license is granted immediately if you are convicted.
License Suspension for Second Offense DUI in VirginiaSecond offense DUI (within 10 years of the offense date of the first DUI) requires a 36 month license loss. However, you are not eligible to receive a restricted license right away. If it is a second offense within five years of the first offense, you must wait at least one year after your conviction date on the second offense before you can apply for a restricted license. If you are convicted of a second offense within 10 years of the first, you must wait four months after the conviction of your second offense to apply for a restricted license,.Of course, this information is just the starting point for analysis. If your case involved aggravating factors, such as an accident, the judge may decide that he will not grant a restricted license at all. Restricted license applications are granted in the sole discretion of the judge. Moreover, in Virginia if you are granted a restricted license, installation of an interlock device is a mandatory precondition to driving on the restricted license.
A Fairfax DUI Lawyer Can Help with License Suspension
What Will Happen If I Get Caught Driving In Violation of The License Suspension I Received in My DWI Case In Virginia?If you are convicted of DUI or DWI in Fairfax Virginia, your license will be suspended for one year if the DUI or DWI is a first offense or three years if it is a second offense. If you are not granted a restricted license or you drive outside the terms of your restricted license, two things will occur if you are caught driving:
- (1) You will be charged with a violation of Virginia Code Section 18.2-272 and
- (2) ASAP will file a probation violation with the judge that heard your original DUI/DWI case.
What does this mean?
A 18.2-272 Charge Will Be IssuedWith respect to the new charge under 18.2-272, you are facing up to one year in jail, a $2,500 fine, and an additional 12 month loss of license with no possibility of obtaining a restricted license (the law specifically provides that that are no restricted privileges for the 1 year loss of license on an 18.2-272 violation).
Driving in violation of a license that was revoked or restricted in a DWI or DUI case is an offense that is taken very seriously by Fairfax & Northern Virginia judges and prosecutors. In fact, you are facing more significant consequences then you were when you were initially facing only a DWI charge. While the offense of driving on a revoked driver’s license is most commonly charged under Va. Code 18.2-272, it can also be charged as Va. Code 46.2-301 or 46.2-300. If certain other factors are present, the offense can be charged as a felony under 46.2-391. This offense is punishable, among other things, by up to 5 years in prison with a 1 year mandatory minimum jail sentence.
A Probation Violation Will be FiledWith respect to the probation violation, you are facing the complete revocation of your restricted driving privileges for the remainder of the term of the original DUI/DWI suspension and imposition of all the jail time and fine that was suspended under the terms of your original DUI/DWI conviction. Why? The reason is that when the judge convicted you of DUI/DWI, he suspended jail time and a fine conditioned on your general good behavior and no further violations of law. If you are convicted of the new charge, you will have violated that order and the judge will punish you by revoking (imposing) the suspended portion of your jail time, fine and license suspension. Moreover, you will have violated a direct order of the original sentencing judge and, as you can imagine, that is not a good thing when you appear before that same judge to answer why. The consequences are significant and and can be much harsher than your original DUI/DWI.
Fairfax Driving on Revoked & Suspended LawyerGiven the consequences of a conviction under 18.2-272 or 46.2-301, it is critical that any defenses or possible reductions be explored before a conviction occurs. Contact our office today at 703-556-0004 or by using the Contact Us box to schedule a consultation with a Fairfax Virginia DUI Driving on Revoked or Suspended Defense Lawyer.