Articles Tagged with DUI

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Overview of Arizona DUI Trends, Laws, Penalties, and Criminal Defense

https://blog.novakazlaw.com/files/2017/01/Statue-of-Liberty.-4jpg-283x300.jpgIf you live in Arizona or plan to drive in the state over the July 4th weekend it is important to be aware of the DUI laws and consequences of a conviction.

According to media reports, state and local law enforcement agencies throughout Arizona will increase DUI patrols over the July 4th weekend. Starting Friday, July 1, 2016 law enforcement, including the Phoenix and Tempe police departments, will have an increased presence throughout Maricopa County looking for drivers impaired by drugs and/or alcohol.

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Qualified Medical Marijuana Users Remain at Risk of DUI Prosecution.

MarijuanaAuthorized Medical Marijuana users in Arizona have legal authorization to use the substance, but could still be charged with DUI if considered driving under the influence of drugs, according to a recent Arizona Court of Appeals ruling.

The court ruled Tuesday in the case of Darrah v. Hon. McClennen/City of Mesa, that Arizona Medical Marijuana Act does not protect users from prosecution if there is an active marijuana metabolite or chemical compound in the body when the users get behind the wheel.

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Arizona DUI Arrest Statistics

In looking back over the last six years of DUI arrest statistics released by the Arizona Governor’s Office on Highway Safety (AGOHS), we see an alarming trend in DUI arrests with Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) at the “Extreme” levels, which is 0.15 percent or higher. In 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013 the average Blood Alcohol Content has been over 0.152 percent. Initial reports released for the first quarter of 2014 are showing relentlessness in this trend. Drinking in excess of the extreme impaired driving laws has evidently become the norm, rather than the exception.

The legal limit for driving under the influence of alcohol in Arizona is 0.08 percent. However, a motorist may still be arrested if they are driving under the influence with a BAC lower than 0.08 percent if they are found to be driving or in actual physical control of a vehicle while “impaired to the slightest degree”.Extreme DUI BAC in Arizona is .015 percent; and Super Extreme BAC is .020 percent or greater.

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Rippling Impacts Arizona v. Zaragoza:  DUI arrests for being in “actual physical control” of a vehicle 

This weekend in the news we heard a popular motorcycle sports celebrity Robbie Knievel was allegedly arrested for DUI. Reports indicate the Police were called to Mr. Knievel’s parked motor home, near a famous Motor Cycle Rally. When they arrived on the scene, they found Mr. Knievel’s motor home parked; with Robbie Knievel patiently texting on his mobile device, while sitting in the driver’s seat of his parked vehicle.

Police reported that when they arrived they smelled a strong odor of alcohol, and asked him if he had been drinking. He admitted that he had been drinking a few beers, but DUI test results allegedly indicated his Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) tested 0.228 percent which was 3 times the legal limit in South Dakota. But there is more to this story. It was reported that the reason police were called to the scene, was that witnesses reported seeing him allegedly driving into two other motorhomes, causing damage, without stopping.

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“All gave some; some gave all”.

1. Observance of Memorial Day began after the Civil War, in remembrance of those 620,000 who lost their lives in the deadliest war ever to occur on U.S. soil.

2. Out of the total number of deaths in the Civil War, a majority of the deaths, 400,000, resulted from disease. Combat resulted in 220,000 deaths.

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It is estimated that nearly 10,000 people die, 200,000 people are injured, due to DUI involved collisions every year. To combat the problem, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) recently announced 19 recommendations to reduce DUI fatalities across the country.

A recommendation that has gained much attention is lowering the legal limit of 0.08% Blood Alcohol Limit (BAC) in all states to 0.05 percent. Currently all states have a 0.08% legal limit. At least 100 countries in the world have a 0.05% limit. A spokesperson for the NTSB reported studies that clearly show motorists with a 0.05% BAC or will experience driving impairments that include a decline in cognitive and vision functions.  This increases their risk of causing or being involved in motor vehicle collisions resulting in fatality or serious injuries.

Some studies show on average a person weighing 120 pounds or under, may reach .05% BAC after just one drink of intoxicating liquor, and a person weighing 160 pounds or under may reach the 0.05% limit after only two drinks. However, this can vary by gender; metabolism rate; alcohol tolerance; food or absent food; medications; and other factors that exist.

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On April 17, 2013, The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Missouri v. McNeely, siding with the lower courts’ decisions in a 5-4 ruling to suppress DUI evidence from being used against the defendant.

The case involved a DUI stop, following a moving traffic violation. After questioning, the driver was arrested for suspicion of DUI, after he refused to submit to a DUI breath and blood test.

Following the arrest he was transported to a nearby hospital where a DUI blood test was taken by a lab technician, at the direction of the police officer. The blood test was conducted without the driver’s consent, and in absence of a warrant. The police officer made no attempt to obtain a warrant to collect the blood for the DUI investigation.

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Why Resisting Arrest is a Bad Idea

This week we in the news, an Arizona motorist was stopped and investigated by police for driving impaired due to alcohol or drugs. The suspect allegedly became angry at the line of questioning taking place during the stop. He then allegedly initiated punched one of the officers in the face, and began a physical altercation at the scene with two additional police officers.

All three officers required medical treatment for injuries that included a fractured wrist, contusions, abrasions and a concussion. The suspect was eventually restrained with a Taser gun.

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Vehicular crime laws in Arizona carry some of the most severe consequences and penalties. The Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office was granted additional funding in October 2012 investigation of vehicular crimes that result in serious and fatal auto crashes. The additional $30,000.00 funding will allow police to spend more time investigating DUI accidents and fatal crashes caused by driver impairment due to alcohol and drugs.

Vehicular Crimes Arizona

A “vehicular crime” can be described as any crime involving use of a vehicle. Driving “impaired to the slightest degree” DUI due to alcohol or drugs. This is the case, even if an accident or injury was not involved.

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Under Arizona Law A.R.S. 28-2831 (I) (6) DUI sentencing includes use of certified Ignition Interlock Device (IID) among other penalties.

Following reinstatement of fog a 90 day suspension for Misdemeanor DUI first time offense, the defendant will be required to equip their vehicle with a certified IID. The period of time ordered by the court may be 6 months to one year depending on the circumstances of the conviction. Factors the judge considered includes whether or not the impairment was due to drugs or alcohol; the degree of impairment; status and validity of driver’s license at the time of the stop.

Definition of Ignition Interlock Device