Knowledgeable Virginia DUI/DWI Attorney Protects Drivers’ Rights
Lawyer defending Woodbridge-area clients against criminal prosecution
Throughout Virginia, law enforcement officials have been expanding efforts to crack down on offenses related to driving while intoxicated or under the influence of illicit substances. Being convicted of operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated can have serious consequences, including loss of license, higher insurance costs, heavy fines and jail time. The Saunders Law Firm, PLLC has the knowledge necessary to overcome the evidence against you, and the ability to help you attain the best possible outcome.
Advocate committed to challenging DUI/DWI charges
I understand that good people can make mistakes. I strive to satisfy my clients’ emotional, financial and legal needs by zealously representing your interests at every turn. I am knowledgeable about complex Virginia DUI/DWI laws, and analyze every aspect of your case — from the initial traffic stop to Breathalyzer, Blood and/or Field Sobriety Tests — to build your defense. I know what the prosecution needs to get a conviction, and I challenge the evidence against you with the skill I have developed through real-world experience. I work hard to make sure that you get the respect you deserve and the results you desire.
Counselor advises on what to do if you are stopped
If you have been pulled over by the police, there are several ways that you can help yourself:
- Do not be intimidated by the police. If you are nervous, police officers may think that you are hiding something or are intoxicated. Don’t give them that opportunity. Remaining calm and being polite are good ways to ensure that your encounter with the police does not escalate into a hostile situation.
- Clean out your glove box. Fumbling through these compartments to find your registration or insurance can be easily misinterpreted as intoxication. Keeping the glove box or center console neat and clean allows you to swiftly grab your identification and present it to a police officer.
- Do not let the police search your car. Any evidence found in your car related to alcohol or drug use may be used to support a DUI/DWI conviction. Unless you have been informed that you are under arrest, do not allow the officer to perform a search of your vehicle without a warrant.
- Do not make incriminating statements. Cases are never won on the side of the road. It is not in your best interest to try and plead your case during the stop. Remember, you are not required to speak and can identify yourself simply by providing your license and registration as will be requested by the officer. If you are arrested, you will have your day in court. Guilt must be proved beyond a reasonable doubt so remember, statements you make during the stop that would tend to show your guilt can and likely will be used against you.
- Preliminary breath tests and field sobriety tests are not required. By law, an individual is not required to submit to a preliminary breath test or complete field sobriety testing (one leg stand, saying abc’s, walk and turn, etc). Although preliminary breath test results are not admissible in the prosecution of a DUI/DWI, they are used to establish probable cause to arrest. Likewise, field sobriety tests are often times used to establish probable cause to arrest.
- Take the breathalyzer only after you have been arrested and transported to the police station. Licensed drivers operating a motor vehicle on the public highways of the Commonwealth of Virginia have impliedly consented to providing a breath sample upon being arrested for a DUI/DWI. Simply taking the breathalyzer under these circumstances does not automatically mean that you are guilty of the charged offense. Many DUI/DWI defendants have been found not guilty due to a malfunctioning breath analyzing machine or an improperly administered blood or urine test. Also, you may still blow under the legal limit. Failure to provide a sample after arrest will lead to a charge of unreasonable refusal.
- Get a blood test after release. Alcohol detection devices can be unreliable and malfunction. Don’t go to jail because of a broken machine. It’s a good idea to measure your BAC (blood alcohol concentration) with a blood test after arrest. At trial, your attorney can use that evidence to raise possible defenses.
- Contact a DWI attorney immediately.
Contact me today for a consultation.
If you have been arrested for DUI, you need a qualified defense attorney who has the knowledge and experience to help you win. Call The Saunders Law Firm, PLLC today at 703-672-0808 or contact me online to set up a consultation at my Woodbridge, Virginia office.