Get a DUI Attorney Near Me
Compton is not a good place to be arrested for DUI. The city has cracked down on drunk driving in recent years, and the penalties you face are at an all time high. If you are convicted, you can expect to face jail time, lose your driver’s license, be ordered into a DUI education program, and pay thousands of dollars in fines—or more. It is imperative that you defend yourself against this charge.
The best defense is having a reputable Compton DUI lawyer on your side. Your lawyer can help protect you from the worst penalties associated with DUI. They can challenge the evidence against you and in some cases get the charges dropped or even win your case.
Penalties for DUI in Compton
The City of Compton pursues an aggressive DUI enforcement policy. This policy is not purely altruistic. The fines for DUI are hefty, and can total up to $15,649 for a single first time conviction. To the city, that is money that’s desperately needed. The result is that law enforcement conducts huge sweeps which can net up to 47 arrests in a single night.
If you’re on the wrong end of one of those arrests, the penalties you face can seem confusing. California’s DUI penalties are complicated, and the California Vehicle Code sets heavier sentences if you have previous convictions. To simplify things, let’s look at the penalties for a simple first time DUI. They include:
- Fines starting at $390, that rise to a minimum of $1,800 when all court fees are considered. This is a minimum, and the total will often be thousands more—even over $10,000.
- Jail time ranging from 48 hours to 6 months.
- A suspended driver’s license for a minimum of four months.
- Minimum three months’ mandatory DUI school at a cost of $500.
If you’ve had previous DUI’s or related charges in the past 10 years, the penalties will be far stiffer. Jail can become up to 16 months in state prison. License suspension can last for years. DUI school or alcohol treatment may be required for up to 30 months, and probation may drag on long after your sentence is over. Even when you can finally drive again, you may be required to install an interlock device in your car—at your own cost.
What Happens When You Get a DUI in Compton
The Compton PD closed several years ago. Compton is now patrolled mainly by the county Sheriff with help from the California State Trooper out of the South Los Angeles Office. Regardless of which body arrested you, you will likely spend a night in jail at the Sheriff’s Compton Patrol Station. But this is just the beginning.
A DUI case can take months to resolve. This time can be nerve wracking, but it will pass all too quickly—and it’s time you must spend preparing your case and fighting for your rights. There are several stages where your case requires make-or-break decisions from you:
- Within 10 days of arrest you must file a request for a hearing with the state DMV. If you do not, you will lose your right to drive until your trial! You only get one chance at this hearing, and there is no appeal. The best way to approach it is to have a DUI lawyer represent you.
- Within weeks of your arrest you will have to appear at your arraignment. This is a hearing where you’re asked to enter a plea, typically Guilty or Not Guilty. If you have a state appointed lawyer they will often advise you to plead guilty—this is rarely a good idea! A dedicated DUI lawyer will usually tell you to hold out and will treat the arraignment as a chance to challenge the prosecution and put pressure on them for a deal.
- Within 45 days you will likely have a trial scheduled at the Compton Courthouse. Most likely you will not actually have to appear at this trial, however. Instead, your DUI lawyer will work to resolve your case favorably before the trial even happens.
How Does a DUI Lawyer Make a Difference in a Case?
If you had a few drinks before you were arrested, you may think your case is hopeless. This is absolutely not true. DUI lawyers routinely turn around even the toughest of cases. Breath tests, blood tests, even a verbal confession are not necessarily the final word in a DUI case. That’s because DUI lawyers are trained to take on this kind of evidence and find the holes in it.
A few of the approaches a DUI lawyer can take include:
- Challenging blood or breath evidence. These tests are far from scientific and they can go wrong many different ways. Failure to administer them properly, malfunction of the equipment, inappropriate handling at the lab, and simple mis-calibration can all cal these results into question. In many cases, your lawyer can get the test results suppressed in your case.
- Comparing officer testimony. Did the arresting officer say something different at the DMV hearing than they did in the arrest report? Do two officers’ reports conflict with each other? What do other witnesses say? Police make mistakes, and your lawyer can find them.
- Exploring other explanations. You may have swerved, sped or caused an accident—and even appeared intoxicate to officers at the scene. But that doesn’t mean drugs or alcohol are the only explanation. Your lawyer will explore other factors that may have been present, and will know how to present these in a way that has legal standing.
- Examining the arrest process. If your rights were violated during the arrest, your confession or statements may not be allowed in court.
Talk to a Compton DUI Lawyer Today
Don’t go into your case blind. The sooner you talk to a lawyer, the more they can do for you. We can take basic details of your case and match you with a Compton DUI attorney who has the right experience—and get you a complete case evaluation for FREE. This is the best way to find out what your chances are and whether a lawyer will make a difference.
Make sure you have the best defense. Fill out the form to your right or call (310) 862-0199 and get your FREE consultation today.