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  1. #1

    Default DUI Arrest in Arizona

    My question involves criminal law for the state of: Arizona

    Situation: Arrested for suspected DUI.

    Some questions:

    1) Police kept repeating that results of breathalyzer could not be used. Said this numerous times. Gave me copies of the paperwork from that night. 4 forms: (a) Vehicle Impound Report. (b) Traffic Ticket and Complaint. (c) DUI Blood Urine Results/Destruction Notice. (d) Cash Bond Receipt. Nowhere in any of this paperwork is the breathalyzer result written down. In fact on (b) there is a box for PBT Result and it was left blank. He informed me what my result was verbally but I am not familiar with the number system and can't recall it. How can I find out what that result was? Why isn't it written down anywhere?

    2) Field sobriety tests were conducted. I feel that I passed them all. And coinciding with this, there is absolutely no documentaiton as to what tests were conducted, and what my results were. Why?

    3) There was no "official" breathalyzer taken at the hospital where the blood test was done, nor at the police department. Is this relevant?

    4) I am a California resident. This occurred in AZ. I was told AZ does not offer a DUI Diversion Program. As per the law, my license will be suspended in CA. I was told CA will "treat my situation as if I got a DUI in CA". If CA has a diversion program, can I take advantage of it and include it in my plea in AZ ?

    5) Despite being told AZ does not have a DUI diversion program, this article clearly states otherwise: http://www.azduiatty.com/arizona-dui...-gets-200K.htm Numerous attorneys have told me no such program exists but they have not seen this article. Does AZ have a DUI Diversion Program?

    6) Does CA have a DUI diversion program?

    7) Another poster here was discussing contacting the DMV for a hearing. I am not clear on what this step is for. Here is what he wrote: "You also have ten days from the time of the arrest to make an appointment with DMV for a hearing. No appointment generally means an automatic suspension after 30 days." ..... What is this referring to?

    8) Numerous web sites discuss how people got downgraded from DUI to wet reckless, and the situation did *not* involve errors or omissions in the process (the typical way for attorneys to get things thrown out). What type of circumstances allow people to talk down a charge like that? There's never any real explanation as to how or why they succeeded.

    9) As a side note, the police seemed to be very friendly to me. Clean cut, well put together, well mannered, and not exhibiting any signs of intoxication. Maybe I'm just not the typical type of arrest-ee they see, but they were joking around with me, talking about Southpark jokes, and asking me about their hair loss (I run some Dermatology related web sites). Seemed really kick back, upbeat, and light hearted. I know for a fact I was also exhibiting no signs of intoxication. I found it strange that within 15 minutes of arresting me, they said I was free to go. That 15 minute wait was only because they had to call a cab. There were 4 other people who were also DUI arrests and they said they'd been there for hours and hours. I was told things like this come into play when sentencing occurrs. How I present myself at the police station (including video tapes of me walking and not stumbling, not acting drunk, etc) ... what do you think?

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Some General DUI Arrest Questions

    Quote Quoting ChristineBrim
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    1) Police kept repeating that results of breathalyzer could not be used. Said this numerous times. Gave me copies of the paperwork from that night. 4 forms: (a) Vehicle Impound Report. (b) Traffic Ticket and Complaint. (c) DUI Blood Urine Results/Destruction Notice. (d) Cash Bond Receipt. Nowhere in any of this paperwork is the breathalyzer result written down. In fact on (b) there is a box for PBT Result and it was left blank. He informed me what my result was verbally but I am not familiar with the number system and can't recall it. How can I find out what that result was? Why isn't it written down anywhere?
    If it was a breath test in the field, it would not generally be admissible as to your actual BAC, but can be used as one of the field sobriety tests to show that you had alcohol in your system. That result might be indicated in the full police report ... which you apparently do not yet have.

    2) Field sobriety tests were conducted. I feel that I passed them all. And coinciding with this, there is absolutely no documentaiton as to what tests were conducted, and what my results were. Why?
    They would be in the full police report. And the person least likely to comprehend their performance on the FSTs is the person who is impaired. Besides, do you know what the officer was looking for in the FSTs? It was not simply whether you could stand straight. There are two or more clues in each test, and they may not be so obvious.

    3) There was no "official" breathalyzer taken at the hospital where the blood test was done, nor at the police department. Is this relevant?
    Nope. You apparently opted for a blood test. It will be that result which will determine whether you were above the per se limit or not. Of course, even if it comes back UNDER .08 you can still be guilty of impaired driving.

    4) I am a California resident. This occurred in AZ. I was told AZ does not offer a DUI Diversion Program. As per the law, my license will be suspended in CA. I was told CA will "treat my situation as if I got a DUI in CA". If CA has a diversion program, can I take advantage of it and include it in my plea in AZ ?
    CA will honor any suspension in AZ and will treat your conviction there similar to one here. When your license is clear in AZ, then CA will reinstate it.

    5) Despite being told AZ does not have a DUI diversion program, this article clearly states otherwise: http://www.azduiatty.com/arizona-dui...-gets-200K.htm Numerous attorneys have told me no such program exists but they have not seen this article. Does AZ have a DUI Diversion Program?
    If attorneys are telling you no, then I guess the answer is no. But, it may be a program available in some areas but not all.

    6) Does CA have a DUI diversion program?
    Yes. But it is not available everywhere.

    7) Another poster here was discussing contacting the DMV for a hearing. I am not clear on what this step is for. Here is what he wrote: "You also have ten days from the time of the arrest to make an appointment with DMV for a hearing. No appointment generally means an automatic suspension after 30 days." ..... What is this referring to?
    California's Admin per Se law. It has no meaning in AZ, though I believe AZ has a similar practice. You might want to look over the paperwork you have and see if it indicates that you should contact the AZ DMV for a hearing to avoid an automatic suspension of the officer believes the blood test will come back at .08 or higher.

    8) Numerous web sites discuss how people got downgraded from DUI to wet reckless, and the situation did *not* involve errors or omissions in the process (the typical way for attorneys to get things thrown out). What type of circumstances allow people to talk down a charge like that? There's never any real explanation as to how or why they succeeded.
    Because it is a plea offer, and "wet reckless" is an offense in CA - not sure if it has an equivalent in AZ.

    9) As a side note, the police seemed to be very friendly to me. Clean cut, well put together, well mannered, and not exhibiting any signs of intoxication.
    Apparently you exhibited some sign of impairment as you were arrested. And if you think every impaired driver is a disheveled, sloppy, puking drunk, you'd be wrong.

    I know for a fact I was also exhibiting no signs of intoxication.
    Actually, you do not know this. You believe you were not, but clearly the officer(s) thought otherwise.

    You should consult an attorney ASAP so that you can know best how to proceed.
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

  3. #3

    Default Re: Some General DUI Arrest Questions

    Quote Quoting cdwjava
    View Post
    Do you know what the officer was looking for in the FSTs? It was not simply whether you could stand straight. There are two or more clues in each test, and they may not be so obvious.
    Yes, we discussed it. He mentioned the pen going from side to side as my eyes followed - he was looking for a little shaking. He said I did fine but he could sense something was up. "Something was up" doesn't really convince me that I was showing signs of inability to drive. Every one of us (you included) uses their best judgment when getting in a car after drinking. And every one of us (you included) has done it at some point in their lives. Whether its a single beer or multiple, does not matter, because everyone's body responds differently. That judgment you use is entitled to you as an adult, to determine whether or not you should be driving. It's too bad that laws are made for the lowest common denominators (people who can't handle their alcohol). Its completely false to state that everyone is a danger behind the wheel. One person may be a danger after a single glass of wine. Another may not. But laws are laws, and they've decided that an arbitrary number accurately describes everyone. This is where the law fails, and this is also where using your own judgment suddenly means nothing. Then suddenly the self-pious in the crowd start reciting platitudes of "you HAVE no judgment when you drink!". LOL ... cracks me up every time. I have no judgment when I drink, but you did when you had a couple beers and chose to drove home? Alright ...

    In any case, the point is that there is a lot of gray area in a world where police want to pretend everything is black and white. It's not. We'd do ourselves a big favor to acknowledge that, but humans love certainty. That's why one guy can tell another guy that his God is false when neither of them has a single ounce of proof that God even exists. Yet despite this complete and obvious lack of evidence, they have been known to start entire wars and slaughter thousands of people based on the assumption. So its just easier to pretend that everything is cut and dry. 0.08 means you're a danger to society. My eye twitching a little means I am drunk? Do the same test on me right now and it will happen again. DUI punishment automatically assumes you're an alcoholic and require rehab. The logic is so poor ...


    CA will honor any suspension in AZ and will treat your conviction there similar to one here. When your license is clear in AZ, then CA will reinstate it.
    I was actually asking if I could discuss the Diversion Program in CA since I am a CA resident, since CA does what you said above: suspends my license and "acts as if" it happened there. If so, then maybe I could have my attorney offer a CA diversion program as a plea to reduce the charge?

    You might want to look over the paperwork you have and see if it indicates that you should contact the AZ DMV for a hearing to avoid an automatic suspension of the officer believes the blood test will come back at .08 or higher.
    What's the diff between automatic suspension and waiting until August 2 for my meeting with the judge, and then being told its suspended as the blood results are back?


    Apparently you exhibited some sign of impairment as you were arrested. And if you think every impaired driver is a disheveled, sloppy, puking drunk, you'd be wrong.
    Actually the officer indicated otherwise after the field tests. I know some think that people who are drinking have zero ability to make accurate assessments of things, but I completely disagree. Mountains of proof showing otherwise. Again we assume - based on the lowest common denominator - the drunk fool who obviously can't. There are shades of gray. Tons of shades of gray. So a black and white comment like that doesn't work with someone who is intelligent. And the cop's comments confirm my judgment was accurate. Field tests were fine. That's why he chose to do a breathalyzer. I still had alcohol in my mouth as we had *just* downed a drink and left the place. So it came back extremely high (like off the charts high). Because of this, and only this, he said he had to arrest me. Im 1,000% convinced I had alcohol still in my mouth. And to say something else that will probably piss people off here: Even when completely sober I can't close my eyes and walk a straight line. I would stumble. My balance is terrible.

    Sorry for the soapbox opinions but I am an analytical person by profession, and struggle with a 130 IQ ... so its difficult for me to look at inconsistencies in a situation and not take issue with them.

    C

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Some General DUI Arrest Questions

    Quote Quoting ChristineBrim
    View Post
    I still had alcohol in my mouth as we had *just* downed a drink and left the place. So it came back extremely high (like off the charts high). Because of this, and only this, he said he had to arrest me. Im 1,000% convinced I had alcohol still in my mouth.
    If you have an 130 IQ then wait unit the results of the blood test come back...


    Quote Quoting ChristineBrim
    View Post
    And to say something else that will probably piss people off here: Even when completely sober I can't close my eyes and walk a straight line. I would stumble. My balance is terrible.
    The Walk and Turn SFST IS NOT PERFORMED WITH YOUR EYES CLOSED!


    Please note I have consumed 7 beers prior to posting...

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Some General DUI Arrest Questions

    Quote Quoting ChristineBrim
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    Yes, we discussed it. He mentioned the pen going from side to side as my eyes followed - he was looking for a little shaking. He said I did fine but he could sense something was up. "Something was up" doesn't really convince me that I was showing signs of inability to drive.
    Of course, he does not have to convince YOU that you are impaired, he has to convince a prosecutor and then a court.

    I suspect that his report will be a little more specific than "something was up." And what they look for is a little more involved than "shaking," but that's a good lay term.

    Besides, that test - referred to as Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus, or HGN - is just one of a battery. By itself, it is the best indicator of all of them, but taken with the full battery the accuracy rate is quite high.

    Every one of us (you included) uses their best judgment when getting in a car after drinking.
    Alcohol is pretty much unique among impairing substances in that generally the first thing to go is one's judgment.

    And every one of us (you included) has done it at some point in their lives. Whether its a single beer or multiple, does not matter, because everyone's body responds differently.
    To a degree, yes. But, while the outward signs of impairment may not be readily apparent to the untrained eye, the higher the BAC the more impaired one is. An experienced alcohol may appear to be less impaired than he is. We popped a guy the other day who was still functional at a .29! He was clearly too impaired to drive, but had we simply seen him walking down the street he likely would not have warranted a second glance. Driving, on the other hand, was a different story.

    It's too bad that laws are made for the lowest common denominators (people who can't handle their alcohol). Its completely false to state that everyone is a danger behind the wheel.
    Nah, the laws cater to the safety of the general public. Since people who have been drinking cannot be relied upon to objectively evaluate their own condition (that judgment problem) the state has chosen to take steps to try and protect us from people like yourself that believe there are people that can actually have a high BAC and be perfectly safe to drive. That is simply untrue.

    While you are correct in that it might take more - or less - alcohol for a person to get to that state (depending on size, weight, gender, body mass, etc.) there is still no arguing that when blood alcohol reaches certain levels, physical impairment occurs and the physiological signs can be observed.

    But laws are laws, and they've decided that an arbitrary number accurately describes everyone.
    One can be impaired with a BAC of zero. Drugs do not have a BAC yet a person can and will be impaired if they take too much medication or many types of illegal substances. And with alcohol, the per se level was not set "arbitrarily." The research supports it ... in fact, much of the recent research seems to support an even lower BAC should be adopted. Though, I do not see that as a realistic possibility.

    This is where the law fails, and this is also where using your own judgment suddenly means nothing. Then suddenly the self-pious in the crowd start reciting platitudes of "you HAVE no judgment when you drink!". LOL ... cracks me up every time.
    I'm glad you find the facts so amusing.

    I have no judgment when I drink, but you did when you had a couple beers and chose to drove home? Alright ...
    If I made such a decision, and I was impaired, then clearly I did not exercise good, sound judgment.

    Oh, as a note, I have been sober for 21 years and 3 days. So, no, I have not driven even remotely impaired in well over 21 years.

    In any case, the point is that there is a lot of gray area in a world where police want to pretend everything is black and white. It's not.
    The law can be. In this case, the law says that you CAN be impaired with a BAC of less than .08, and ARE impaired with a BAC of .08 or greater.

    0.08 means you're a danger to society.
    Potentially, yes. At least a danger to the public on and around the roadways you are on. The science and statistics tell us so.

    My eye twitching a little means I am drunk?
    An eye "twitch?" No. The low angle onset of HGN, very likely. Though, because there can be other causes of nystagmus, the battery is designed to evaluate impairment without the use of but a single test.

    I was actually asking if I could discuss the Diversion Program in CA since I am a CA resident, since CA does what you said above: suspends my license and "acts as if" it happened there. If so, then maybe I could have my attorney offer a CA diversion program as a plea to reduce the charge?
    But, your conviction would be in AZ where you were stopped and will be prosecuted. Diversion addresses the criminal conviction. CA is not addressing the criminal conviction. When your matter is cleared in AZ, you should be cleared in CA.

    What's the diff between automatic suspension and waiting until August 2 for my meeting with the judge, and then being told its suspended as the blood results are back?
    The DMV suspension is an administrative matter and not directly related to the court case. I imagine it is much the same in AZ, but you will have to check with the AZ DMV and read your paperwork to see if a suspension is automatic in your case.

    Actually the officer indicated otherwise after the field tests.
    Then he lied to you to avoid an argument.

    Had he not observed the objective signs of alcohol or drug impairment he could not have made a lawful arrest and compelled a chemical test from you. Officers will often tell people they did fine, or great, or good, in order to encourage continued cooperation.

    If his report reflects that you did just fine and exhibited no objective signs of impairment and was arrested anyway (unlawfully), then you will be receiving a huge payday when you sue the city.

    I still had alcohol in my mouth as we had *just* downed a drink and left the place. So it came back extremely high (like off the charts high). Because of this, and only this, he said he had to arrest me. Im 1,000% convinced I had alcohol still in my mouth.
    Unless the officer used a PBT from back when I began in law enforcement, the machine would almost certainly kicked out an error with mouth alcohol.

    Besides, unless you drove, were stopped, had the FSTs conducted, and were given the field PBT all within the narrow window of 15 minutes, any mouth alcohol should have been expelled from your system. Though, I am sure your attorney would argue that you "burped." Though, depending on the PBT that might not matter.

    Oh, and I seriously doubt that the officer based his arrest SOLELY on the breath device. If he did, it will be apparent in his report. And if he did, then it might be vulnerable to attack by a talented (and expensive) DUI attorney. Maybe.

    And to say something else that will probably piss people off here: Even when completely sober I can't close my eyes and walk a straight line. I would stumble. My balance is terrible.
    That's why the battery does not rely on a single test. And, of course, what you describe would not be a proper application of the Walk-and-turn test.

    Sorry for the soapbox opinions but I am an analytical person by profession, and struggle with a 130 IQ ... so its difficult for me to look at inconsistencies in a situation and not take issue with them.
    Glad to hear it. Guess we can commiserate together at MENSA.
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    Default Re: Some General DUI Arrest Questions

    Think of this: First-offender 6-month DUI program, AB-762 Program is a 6-month first-offender driving-under-the-influence program.

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