If you smell like alcohol, your chances of being arrested for a San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI when you are pulled over are very high.

An arrest for a San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI, however, does not automatically result in a San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI conviction or loss of your driver’s license in California.

If arrested for a San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI, it is important that you hire an experienced San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI defense lawyer.

What might the San Diego California DUI Police be looking for when you drive?

Improper or unsafe lane movements, lane straddling, wide turning radius, weaving, swerving, drifting, almost striking object or vehicle, driving on other than designated highway, speeding or below the limit, stopping without cause in traffic lane, following too closely, braking erratically, signaling inconsistent with driving actions, slow response to traffic signals, accelerating or decelerating rapidly, headlights not being used, taillight or license plate light burned out, etc.

After you are pulled over, what is the San Diego California DUI police looking for?

Odor of alcohol on breath
Flushed face
Red, watery, glassy and/or bloodshot eyes
Slurred speech
Unsteady gait
Fumbling with wallet trying to get license
Failure to comprehend the San Diego California Drunk Driving officer’s questions
Combative, argumentative, jovial or other “inappropriate” attitude
Staggering when exiting vehicle
Swaying/instability on feet
Leaning on car for support
Combative, argumentative, jovial or other “inappropriate” attitude
Soiled, rumpled, disorderly clothing
Stumbling while walking
Disorientation as to time and place
Inability to follow directions
Other alcohol-related behavior

San Diego California DUI Police Contact

If stopped, you only have to provide License, Registration and Insurance (assuming you are over 21). You are not required to answer potentially incriminating questions. Politely refuse to answer any questions regarding the investigation without a San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI attorney present.

Let the San Diego California Drunk Driving officer know that you are aware San Diego DUI Field Sobriety Tests( FSTs) are completely voluntary and optional. Please do not agree to perform any of these subjective & unreliable tests. If you perform them, you may be arrested for a San Diego California DUI anyway. These are not objective tests and the San Diego California DWI officer will use the results against you in San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI court. Politely refuse to do the San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI field sobriety tests, acrobatics or gymnastics.

Although San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI officers generally use a wide range of FSTs, there are only three federally-approved (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) “standardized” field sobriety tests. These consist of 3 tests:

Heel-to-Toe (also referred to as “walk-and-turn”)
One-Leg Stand
Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus

The HGN test is a relatively recent yet increasingly common development in DUI investigation. The officer attempts to estimate the angle at which the eye begins to jerk (“nystagmus” is medical term for a distinctive eye oscillation); if this occurs sooner than 45 degrees, it theoretically indicates a blood-alcohol concentration over .05%. The smoothness of the eye’s tracking the penlight (or finger or pencil) is also a factor, as is the type of jerking when the eye is as far to the side as it can go. This test is not accepted by the medical community however, it continues to be widely used by law enforcement.

Roadside / Pre-Arrest / Preliminary Alcohol Screening – If you are older than 21, and you are not on DUI probation, refuse to take a roadside, preliminary alcohol screening test. This is a hand-held, portable on scene breath test gadget. This San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI test is completely voluntary and you have the absolute right to refuse this type of breath test. Ask to go to the station for the real breath test.

Under the implied consent law, you have a legal obligation to take a chemical test this is a breath or blood test and you have a choice. If you choose breath, many jurisdictions permit you to have a second test of blood; this is because a breath sample is not saved and so cannot later be re-analyzed by your San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI defense lawyer.

A San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI blood sample will be taken if requested after a San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI breath test is given.

Analysis of a San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI blood sample is potentially the most accurate. San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI breath test machines are susceptible to a number of problems rendering them often unreliable.

If you are confident that you are sober, a blood sample may be the wise choice; Breath being the least accurate and most easily impeached, is the best option if you believe your blood-alcohol concentration may be above the legal limit.

Do not refuse the San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI chemical test. The consequences of refusing to submit to a blood or breath test are severe: They include license suspension, jail time, and the fact of refusal may be introduced into evidence as “consciousness of guilt”.

Always be on your best behavior. Be polite and respectful to the San Diego California DUI police officers this will go along way in your San Diego California Drunk Driving defense and your release from custody.

One way to avoid a San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI is to not drink and drive.

If you are dealing with a San Diego California Drunk Driving / DUI arrest, the San Diego California DMV must be contacted within 10 days to stop the suspension of your license from going into effect. Your San Diego California DUI criminal defense attorney must request a hearing.

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