East Valley

East Valley is a large, affluent region within the Phoenix metropolitan area that includes the cities of Mesa, Tempe, Gilbert, and Chandler. More than 1.3 million people live there, and a number of its cities have been growing quickly over the past few decades. Healthcare, tourism, aerospace, and technology drive the economy. The crime rate in major East Valley cities may be on the decline. For example, Mesa is one of the safest cities of its size with respect to violent and property crimes, according to a 2012 FBI report. However, being charged with a crime such as a DUI in East Valley is a stressful event because as a state, Arizona takes crime so seriously. An experienced East Valley criminal defense attorney can examine your case closely, determine the best strategies for your defense, negotiate a plea deal with the prosecutor, and if necessary, defend you at trial.

DUI in East Valley

Driving under the influence (DUI) is common even in areas that have relatively low rates of violent and property crime. In Arizona, there is an Implied Consent Law; when your driver's license issue was issued, you consented to take a breath, blood, or urine test if you were ever pulled over. Failure to take this test can lead to a suspension of your driver's license for one year, even if you are not convicted of a DUI.

The legal limit for blood alcohol content (BAC) in adult drivers is .08%. There is zero tolerance for minor drivers; any amount of alcohol in a minor's bloodstream can lead to a DUI charge. Commercial drivers have a legal limit of .04%. If your BAC is .15 or more, you may be charged with Extreme DUI.

Although most people think of alcohol in connection with DUI, it is illegal to drive under the influence of any drug, a toxic vapor releasing substance, or a combination of substances and alcohol if they cause even a slight impairment. This means you can be charged if you drive under the influence of an unauthorized quantity of prescription medications.

Even a first DUI conviction can be expensive. In addition to a DUI base fine of $250, there are other assessments that may be due in sums of more than $1,000. A first offender may be in jail for a period of time ranging from 24 hours to 10 days, and will have his license suspended from 90 to 360 days. The court may order a first offender to install an Ignition Interlock Device at his or her own expense. This device will prevent the person from starting his car unless he passes a breathalyzer test.

Additional DUI convictions are increasingly expensive. A second offender, for example, may spend up to 90 days in jail, have his license suspended for a year, and be assessed fines of more than $3,410. He may be required to make restitution to the community, install an Ignition Interlock Device at his own expense, and participate in drug education or treatment.

A first DUI is usually a misdemeanor. However, an aggravated or felony DUI may be charged when someone drives under a suspended, canceled, revoked or otherwise restricted license; when someone commits three or more DUIs within a 7 year period in any state; or when someone drives under the influence with a minor under 15 years of age.

Protecting Your Freedom

A knowledgeable Chandler criminal defense lawyer can raise a number of defenses on your behalf. Among other things, he can challenge the charges with any mistakes in police procedure, or any technical problems with the breathalyzer or blood test. Contact James Novak at (480) 413-1499 or via our online form.