Police officers in Los Angeles often stop drivers if they believe a driver is driving under the influence (DUI). Generally, police officers will not leave you off with a warning for a DUI. However, on very rare occasions this may happen.
DUI stops typically lead to an arrest and conviction. Our experienced lawyers are ready to help you if you were arrested for a DUI in Los Angeles. Find out more by calling us for your free consultation at (310) 862-0199.
Police Officers and Warnings for Traffic Offenses in Los Angeles
Sometimes, police officers will give you a warning after stopping you for a traffic offense. For example, perhaps you were driving slightly above the speed limit. A police officer could warn you to keep your speed lower and then let you go without giving you a ticket.
Police officers generally do not give such warnings if they believe you are committing a DUI. This is because DUIs are more serious offenses than speeding and other minor traffic infractions. DUIs are considered criminal acts in the court system in Los Angeles.
If a police officer puts you through a field sobriety test (FST) or blood alcohol content (BAC) testing and believes you are under the influence, you will likely face an arrest.
DUIs and BAC Limits in Los Angeles
Police officers can request you submit for testing of your BAC after they stop you for a DUI. Your BAC reflects the amount of alcohol you consumed. California has a legal limit on the amount of alcohol you can consume before driving. Drivers must keep their BAC under:
- 0.08% if they are non-commercial drivers over 21
- 0.04% if they are commercial drivers over 21
- 0.01% if they are drivers under 21
A failure on a BAC test can lead to a DUI arrest in Los Angeles. Generally, police officers will not let you go without issuing a charge if you fail a BAC test.
Warnings for BAC Testing in the State of California
All drivers in California give “implied consent” to BAC testing. This means that by driving a car you agree to comply with BAC testing after you are lawfully arrested.
However, some drivers have the right to decline a preliminary alcohol screening (PAS) test. You are allowed to decline a PAS test as long as you are:
- Not under 21
- Not on DUI probation
Once you are arrested, you are legally obligated to go along with BAC testing. You may choose the kind of BAC test you want to complete in most situations. The police can allow you to complete breath, blood, or urine testing.
Note that police officers should warn you if you refuse to complete a legally ordered BAC test. Refusal to take these tests can lead to legal consequences. Drivers who refuse a legal BAC test can have their license suspended by the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).
Penalties for DUI Convictions in Los Angeles
As we mentioned, the police are unlike to give you a warning for a DUI here in Los Angeles. Instead, you will likely face criminal charges if you fail a BAC test or if police suspect you were committing a DUI. The court system uses Vehicle Code (VEH) §23152 to handle many DUI charges. A conviction under VEH §23152 can result in:
- High court fines
- Time in jail
- Time in an alcohol-treatment program
- Restrictions on your driver’s license
We are prepared to help if you are arrested for a DUI in California. We can take charge and begin working on a legal defense for you right away. This can help you avoid a conviction and the penalties for a DUI. We may be able to show that:
- You were not driving under the influence
- You were stopped without due cause
- Police officers did not properly perform BAC testing
Reach out to us now so we can focus on getting your charges dismissed or even reduced. We’re standing by to help you right now.
Discuss Your Case with an Experienced DUI Lawyer
Technically, it is possible the police could give you a warning for a DUI offense. However, it is far more likely that you will face criminal charges for a DUI offense. We are ready to help you handle these criminal charges. Just contact us at (310) 862-0199 and get your free consultation.