DUI Defenses

There are many different ways in which an attorney can raise a viable defense for a client facing San Diego DUI charges. Opportunities may arise at different points in the criminal process, and in order to take full advantage of these it is important to involve a DUI Attorney (Pre-trial) as early as possible. Attorney Mark Deniz is well versed in each of these types of defenses.

In the San Diego DUI pre-trial stage, your San Diego DUI Lawyer may be able to bring up such issues as: the lawfulness of your arrest, the lawfulness of your detention (when you were first pulled over and detained on suspicion of DUI), or whether the breath testing device was properly calibrated. Any of these issues may be raised before your trial, at your DMV hearing or during your criminal trial.

Following are some examples of DUI defense strategies, which may be utilized during your criminal trial:

  • A significant amount of time passed between your arrest and breath or blood test, leading to an inaccurate example of what your blood alcohol concentration was at the time of your arrest.
  • You unknowingly consumed alcohol or drugs (someone gave them to you without your knowledge.)
  • You were not actually driving.
  • A physical ailment or other factor influenced your outcome of a breath or blood test.
  • The breath test or blood test was administered improperly.
  • Law enforcement failed to observe you for 15 minutes prior to your breath test to ensure you did not burp, eat, drink, smoke or regurgitate (these may affect a breath test result.)
  • Law enforcement did not have probable cause to pull you over in the first place.

By thoroughly evaluating and investigating all aspects of your case, an experienced San Diego DUI attorney can build a defense strategy that is more effective and offers you the opportunity to avoid a conviction and the associated repercussions. Contact attorney Mark Deniz right away to schedule your free case evaluation for your San Diego DUI.

Contact the Law Office of Mark Deniz now for a free case evaluation at 858-429-9982.

When someone gets stopped on suspicion of a DUI and law enforcement initiates blood, breath and urine tests, the officer must follow the procedures set forth in Title 17 of the California Code of Regulations. The purpose of Title 17 is to ensure that DUI chemical tests are as accurate as possible. A violation of the procedures established in Title 17 can cause inaccurate blood alcohol test results providing for a possible defense to DUI charges.

Title 17 requires that breathalyzers collect air that comes from within the lung called "alveolar air." The law enforcement officer administering the breathalyzer must observe the driver for at least 15 minutes prior to the test to ensure that the driver does not eat, drink, smoke, vomit, or regurgitate. Lastly, with regard to breath tests, Title 17 requires that breathalyzers be calibrated every ten days or 150 uses, whichever comes sooner.

With regard to blood tests, Title 17 requires that the person drawing the blood be an authorized technician. The draw site must be sterilized with a non-alcoholic cleaner. (Gee, I wonder why they wouldn't clean your arm with rubbing alcohol before drawing blood?) The cleaning agent, I've encountered the most is hydrogen peroxide. The vial containing the blood sample must contain a proper amount of non-expired anticoagulant or preservative to ensure that the blood doesn't clot or ferment. Once the blood is drawn, Title 17 requires that the sample be properly mixed with the anticoagulant and preservative (usually by a "vigorous shaking" from law enforcement) and that the sample is properly stored.

Although urine tests are rarely used to determine BAC level, Title 17 sets forth standards for urine tests on those rare occasions. Urine tests are used when neither a blood nor a breath test is available and when a person is suspected of driving under the influence of drugs or a combination of drugs and alcohol. Title 17 requires that a driver must first "void" his or her bladder and then provide a sample no sooner than 20 minutes later. The container holding the sample must be clean, dry, and contain a preservative. The sample must be preserved so that the defendant can have it retested at a later time by an independent laboratory.