What Should I Expect at the Police Station After a DUI Arrest?
Based on the criminal justice system, many things could happen after a DUI arrest in Colorado. Knowing what to expect is crucial to understand how to protect yourself. DUI lawyers from a reputable Colorado criminal defense law firm can take you through what typically happens. Contact them to ensure you get the necessary defense during this challenging time.
Once you’ve been arrested, the police will inventory your car and have it towed. They will furnish you with information about its whereabouts later. However, you must pay a fee before retrieving the vehicle from the towing agency.
If the police didn’t already give you a breathalyzer test on the side of the road before the arrest, they might require you to take a more extensive one when you get to the police station. Typically, if an officer suspects you are impaired by alcohol, you may be subjected to a breath or blood test. A blood test is more physically invasive as they will be drawing your blood and that test can detect other substances besides alcohol.
Refusal of a breath and blood tests can result in a suspension of your driver license for 12 months. Even without a chemical test, the prosecutor may still prosecute the case against you. Contact an experienced Colorado Springs DUI lawyer for legal counsel and representation.
You will then go through the booking process that entails taking your personal information like:
- Date of birth
- Driver’s license information
- Physical features
During the booking process, the police officers at the station may:
- Conduct a preliminary background search to establish if you have any past arrests or convictions
- Search you and take your belongings for safe custody until your release
- Take your photograph and record your name and driver’s license
- Put you in a holding cell until you can work out a bail agreement
A skilled Colorado Springs DUI attorney can work out a favorable bail amount on your behalf. The bail is a promise to appear in court when required and not engage in criminal activities during your case duration. The lawyer can also provide legal representation to ensure your rights are protected.
A DMV hearing is part of the administrative process of your DUI case. It progresses faster than the criminal case that goes through the courts. During the hearing, you have an opportunity to defend your driving privileges. Note that:
- You have 7 days after your arrest or after the police confiscate your license to request the hearing.
- If you don’t request the hearing or it comes after 7 days, you lose the opportunity for the hearing and license suspension automatically takes effect.
- DMV hearings must happen within 60 days after the request.
Also known as a first appearance, an arraignment is necessary to get legal advice on the charges made against you and your rights during the proceedings. If you posted bail, you could be arraigned in court on the same day or 30-60 days after the arrest. You will plead guilty, not guilty, or no contest during the arraignment, or request to postpone the arraignment for further talks with the prosecution.
The arresting officer must first send the necessary paperwork to the court to create a case number. Failure to appear in court means you will forfeit your bond, and a warrant of arrest may be issued against you. You risk facing separate charges for failure to appear, considered a crime with steep penalties.
Remember, you have a right to a DUI lawyer in Colorado Springs. If you already have an attorney, they can attend the arraignment on your behalf.
Taking the DUI Case to Trial
It’s possible to settle a criminal case before it goes to trial as it sometimes takes a long time to get it to trial. Besides, the trial may take a lot of time, but the only way to contest criminal charges is through a jury or bench trial.
Your DUI attorney in Colorado Springs may file pretrial motions, stating the legal issues the judge will address before the case goes before a jury. That often involves a motion to suppress evidence, especially if the police violated your rights during the stop or arrest. Evidence collected illegally should be kept out of court. If your case is a felony DUI, you are also entitled to a preliminary hearing to determine whether the police had probable cause to arrest you.
Case Hearing and Verdict
The prosecution will introduce the case to the jury, with the prosecutor and the defense attorney presenting their side of the case. That includes the evidence, testimony, and witnesses, with each side having a chance to respond. Finally, the jury will come to a verdict, stating whether you’re guilty or not guilty of the charges.
The court process may end if you get a not-guilty verdict. If the court finds you guilty, you can file an appeal with the help of your Colorado Springs criminal defense law team.
What Should I Do Immediately After a DUI Arrest?
Your actions immediately after a DUI arrest could make all the difference in your criminal case. So, make sure you record everything you can remember, including, but not limited to, the following:
- Where the police officer stopped you and the time
- The reason for the stop
- What happened during the DUI investigations? For example, was any sobriety test administered?
- Whether or not the officers read you your Miranda rights
- Your conversation with the officers and anything outstanding, offensive, or intimidating
- All details are significant and could help your attorney build a solid defense to protect your rights and freedom.
Take Action and Protecting Your Rights Today
Being arrested for and charged with a DUI can be scary. Any mistake you make during the arrest and afterward could land you in more trouble. That’s why you should hire aggressive DUI lawyers from a renowned criminal defense law firm in Colorado to fight for your rights. They can handle the matter right from your arrest to fight for the most favorable outcome.
Our law firm has a trusted and resourceful DUI lawyer in Colorado who can develop a robust defense strategy to protect your rights. We work hard to defend our clients against DUI charges because we believe their challenges don’t have to define their future, and we can help you too. Call Joyner Law at (719) 294-0566 to schedule a FREE in-depth case evaluation.