What are DUI Pre-Trial Motions?

Pre-trial motions typically refer to written documents that are filed by a party requesting that the court take a certain action. For example, a defense attorney may file a pre-trial motion to exclude evidence that has been obtained inappropriately. These are used by both the defense and prosecution to limit the scope of evidence and arguments that can be made during the trial.

Once the pre-trial motion is filed, both parties will have the opportunity to argue the merits of the request to the judge. This usually happens during a court hearing. Pre-trial motions can be an extremely integral tool for defending DUI charges. If done well, successful motions can potentially keep the prosecution from bringing forth certain negative charges, offering damaging evidence during trial, or using certain witnesses against you. In fact, some pre-trial motions can lead to the entire criminal case being dismissed even before it ever goes to trial.

When Should Pre-Trial DUI Motions be Made?

Pre-trial DUI motions are generally filed after the preliminary hearing but before the case actually goes to trial. However, they may have strict deadlines depending on the type of motion to be made. In the event that the motion is not filed before its deadline, it is deemed to be waived, and your representation will no longer be able to bring the motion in the future, even if it is a valid one. These deadlines can be located in the local court rules or could be set by the judge overseeing the case.

There are many potential arguments made during pre-trial motions in a DUI case. The most common ones include:

  • Evidence should be excluded because of foul play
  • Confession made in regard to the DUI arrest by a defendant at the scene or even after should be excluded if authorities failed to advise the suspect of his Miranda Rights
  • Evidence of racial bias, excessive force, false arrest, harassment, or criminal conduct
  • A scientific evidence argument attesting to whatever was used to check the defendant is considered invalid or does not accurately reflect that the defendant was intoxicated.

What is a Motion to Dismiss?

A motion to dismiss is when a defendant requests that the court throw out the charges against them due to some defect. A motion to dismiss is different from pleading not guilty and wanting the court to dismiss because you did not commit the alleged crime. Rather, a motion to dismiss argues that the government or the party bringing in the case has either:

  • Failed to follow some procedure required by law
  • Made a mistake in the charging documents 
  • Violated the defendant’s rights in a way that warrants a dismissal
  • The case is barred because the statute of limitations has lapsed.

DUI convictions can have serious, lasting consequences. If you have been charged with a DUI, it is wise to contact experienced defense attorneys like the ones provided by The Law Offices of Taylor and Taylor as soon as possible. Our lawyers can evaluate your case and file any appropriate pre-trial motions that are available to aid you against criminal charges.

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Parents Killed in Head-on Collision Caused by Drunk Driver

A tragic accident in West Sacramento, California left two children parentless on Monday, February 15, 2021.

According to the West Sacramento Police Department, the accident occurred at approximately 11:30 p.m. when a drunk driver crashed head-on with another car at Jefferson Boulevard south of Locks Drive. The suspected DUI driver was transported to a nearby hospital with severe injuries.

The second car involved in the crash was occupied by a married couple and their two young children, who were leaving a family celebration. According to emergency medical personnel, the couple identified as Rasul Afzili, 37, and Anila Afzili, 29, unfortunately succumbed to their injuries. Their children, three-year-old Jannah and seven-month-old Azzan, were taken to a nearby hospital for further medical assessments.

Eyewitnesses attested to the incident that occurred that night. One witness, Alina Karakay, described the aftermath as unbelievable. When Naeema Afzili, Rasul’s sister, was notified of her brother’s accident, she went straight to the medical center for updates. Her sister-in-law was pronounced dead soon after her arrival at the hospital. The infant son came out of the crash with no injuries, while the young daughter suffered broken bones and a head wound.

The Afzili family is left heartbroken, and their lives are changed forever. Naeema Afzili promised to help raise her niece and nephew to be kind-hearted just like their parents planned. Since the tragedy, fundraisers have been created to help bring some form of relief during this unthinkable time.

Investigation is ongoing, as the authorities try to determine whether alcohol was a factor in the fatal crash.

Drinking and driving has serious consequences that can alter or halt the trajectory of lives. If you are ever in a position where you have been drinking and getting home seems impossible, please consider using ride-sharing companies or other safe alternatives.

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DUI Suspect Crashes into Popular Urth Caffe in Santa Monica

This past Valentine’s Day weekend, a driver allegedly under the influence of alcohol or narcotics crashed into Urth Caffe – a popular local cafe in Santa Monica, CA. 

According to a news release, on Friday evening, the drunk driver crashed into a barricade that was placed to protect an outdoor dining area of the café. The collision occurred around 8:00 p.m. during peak business hours for restaurants in the area. Apparently, one of the heavy K-rails was knocked into the dining area, sending tables and chairs flying and customers running for safety. Several diners sustained injuries from the incident.

Authorities reported that a few diners suffered minor injuries from the incident. Also, at least one person had to be transported to a local hospital to receive medical treatment for moderate injuries. However, all of the diners are severely traumatized by the series of events.

The preliminary investigation alleges that Piper Pollard, a 21-year-old Pacific Palisades resident, had been driving north on Main Street around 8p.m. when she lost control of her vehicle and struck a portion of the concrete barrier. Once police arrived on the scene, they arrested and booked Pollard for felony DUI with a bail of $100,000. She was released from custody early Saturday morning according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. The investigation is ongoing.

Since the incident, Urth Caffe has replaced the barriers and rearranged the setup. Diners will now be situated toward the sidewalk to provide further safety.

In cases such as this, it is important to seek legal counsel expeditiously so that they can help you understand your case and act accordingly. The Law Offices of Taylor and Taylor offer the best representation and can assure you that your case will be handled justly.

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Can a Dismissed DUI Charge be Reopened?

Cases in California can be dismissed in one of two ways – with prejudice or without prejudice. Often the word “prejudice” is associated with unfair bias, which may lead to the assumption that when a case is dismissed “with prejudice” that it is due to some form of discrimination. However, that is not the case. In the legal context of a dismissal, “prejudice” refers to a loss of certain rights or privileges.

For a case to be dismissed with prejudice means it is dismissed permanently and cannot be brought back to court. For example, a judge will do this if they deem the lawsuit insufficient or frivolous. On the other hand, a case that is dismissed without prejudice is only temporarily dismissed. This means the plaintiff is allowed to refile charges, alter the claim, or bring it to another court. Therefore, you in fact can face the same charges again.

If charges are dismissed without prejudice, this typically means that jurisdiction does not lie within the scope of the court or the charges were filed improperly. In other cases, the plaintiff may choose to voluntarily dismiss charges without prejudice with the right to refile the charges at another date. In Los Angeles, the prosecution can voluntarily dismiss DUI charges while waiting for the BAC tests. This is so they can take the necessary steps to build a case against the defendant when they decide to refile the charges.

Pay Attention to the Time Limit

The charges might be refiled, but there is a time limit in which this can take place. After a set period of time, the statute of limitations on your case will expire. To determine what this time frame is, it is wise to seek counsel from a DUI lawyer who understands the boundaries in Los Angeles.

From there, they can help you understand all aspects of your criminal trial. It is very important not to forget about a DUI case that has been thrown out without prejudice in California. These charges can have life-altering consequences if refiled. Penalties are even stricter for subsequent DUI charges or if you caused a DUI accident and someone was injured.

The Law Offices of Taylor and Taylor is a great place to seek legal counsel. At our firm, we offer experienced attorneys who are committed to helping you make informed decisions so your case can go as smoothly as possible.

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DUI Policies for Out-of-State Drivers

The Interstate Driver’s License Compact (IDLC) is an interstate agreement in the U.S. that allows for the exchange of information concerning license suspensions and traffic violations of non-residents. Under this agreement, states are able to forward the driving-related information to the home state of the non-resident. Most states (with the exceptions of Georgia, Massachusetts, Michigan, Tennessee, and Wisconsin) belong to the IDLC. For example, if you are a resident of California and get arrested for drunk driving in Nevada, your home state will likely take its own action against your driver’s license due to your out-of-state DUI arrest.

This compact is currently undergoing the process of being replaced by the Drivers License Agreement (DLA), which will impose even stricter regulations on its member-states and on out-of-state offenders. The biggest disparity between the two is that the DLA will eliminate state-wide differences between offenses. Under the IDLC, a state does not have to enforce an out-of-state license suspension or conviction if that state does not have similar laws. However, under the DLA, it would be required to do so.

The State Determines What Happens

Being arrested for a DUI in any state can have a major impact on your driver’s license in your home state. These legislations allow there to be major consequences for both out-of-state and in-state residents. In most cases, the out-of-state driver will have to return to the state where their arrest took place so they can fight the impending charges. If the convicted DUI driver fails to appear in court or for other required hearings, the state can permanently revoke their driving privileges there.

The state where the arrest took place could take it a step further and issue a warrant which will show up on the record in other states. In turn, the driver’s home state would eventually find out about the arrest and suspend that person’s license indefinitely.

Every state uses the standard blood alcohol concentration level established by Congress at or above 0.08% to determine if you are legally drunk. However, punishment for DUIs can differ between states. It is important to note that some states do punish DUIs much more harshly than others. Ultimately, different jurisdictions have the right to punish offenders in the manner they see fit.

What Happens to Out-of-State DUI Drivers in California

California is a major attraction for tourists, and out-of-state drivers often get arrested for DUI here. If you are arrested here for driving with a BAC of 0.08% or higher as an out-of-state driver, the arresting officer will inform you that your driving privileges in California will be suspended in 30 days. The California DMV is then immediately notified of this suspension. The driver will have 10 days from the day of their arrest to challenge the suspension. However, in order to do so, the driver or their DUI attorney must request a California DMV hearing. If this does not happen within the specified timeframe, the right to appeal the suspension will be forfeited, and it will go into effect 30 days following the arrest.

Violating DUI laws can result in serious consequences. However, being an out-of-state driver may garner different questions regarding the specificities of your case. In this context, it would be wise to consult with experienced DUI attorneys like the ones provided by the Law Offices of Taylor and Taylor to help you navigate your case free of ambiguity.

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