DUI Charge in Colorado
Few things are more frightening than being pulled over by a police officer in Denver or other parts of Colorado on suspicion of drunk driving. Most people do not have much experience interacting with cops in situations like these, so you are likely to feel overwhelmed and emotional. You probably will not be thinking very clearly. You might say or do things that you would not if you had your wits about you.
The result? You are arrested. Charged. It feels like your life is coming crashing down around you. Is this going to cost you your job? Your license? How will you get around? Could you end up in jail? How much will all of this end up costing?
At WeedenLaw, we understand how easy it is to spiral out like this when you are worried for your future. However, there is something incredibly important that you have to remember: a charge is not a conviction. Even though it may feel like it, you have not been found guilty yet. Moreover, the onus is on the prosecution to prove your guilt – all you have to do is mount an argument that creates enough doubt that the judge or jury is not sure about your guilt.
This is not easy, but with the right advocate fighting for you, it can be done.
Denver criminal defense attorney Jeff Weeden is that advocate. He understands just how serious the consequences of DUI and DWAI are in Colorado, and how dire the effects of a conviction can be. Because of this, he will not leave any stone unturned in his quest to help you reach the best possible outcome in your case – just as he has done throughout his career for countless people in and around the area who have been unlucky enough to find themselves in your situation.
DUI in Denver Penalties
Are Denver DUI Penalties Really Serious Enough to Require a Defense Attorney? In a word: yes.
The first thing you need to know is that there is more than one possible offense for drinking and driving in our state.
Most people are familiar with DUI charges (driving under the influence), which apply when someone is over the legal limit of .08 BAC. However, Colorado can also charge you with Aggravated DUI (if your BAC is .17 or higher), Underage Drinking and Driving (for anyone under 21), or DWAI (driving while ability impaired).
The latter two crimes have recommended BAC levels (between .02 and .05 for Underage Drinking and Driving, and between .05 and .08 for DWAI), but technically there is no specific BAC reading required. The state just has to mount an effective argument that you were drinking or (for DWAI) that your ability was impaired.
Sound subjective? It is. Unfortunately, it is also the law.
Each of these offenses are charged and penalized differently. Depending on the specific offense you are charged with, you may face:
- License suspension. For a first offense DUI, your license will be suspended or revoked for nine months – it goes up with subsequent or more serious offenses.
- Mandatory Alcohol Assessment, Education, and Treatment. You will be required to attend courses and receive treatment to help you manage your use of alcohol.
- IID. Ignition Interlock Devices are installed in vehicles and require you to blow into them before you can drive. They are mandatory if it is your second offense, and they may even be given to some first-time offenders depending on the situation.
How Much Does a DUI Cost?
If these things do not sound like that big of a deal, chew on this for a second: the estimated monetary cost of a first-time DUI conviction is an astounding $13,530. Those numbers are from the organization No DUI Colorado – and they are from 2016.
Today, the cost may be even higher.
Want to see all of the costs? There is a really clear breakdown on the No DUI site, and it covers a lot of things most people probably would not even consider, such as increased insurance costs, court fees, towing costs, the price to rent your IID (yep – you pay for it), and more.
So, are the penalties serious enough to warrant fighting back? Again: yes.
How a Lawyer Can Help With Your DUI Charge
Law enforcement officials try hard to make it seem like there is no way to beat a DUI charge, but this is typically an attempt to scare people into admitting guilt – or simply not fighting back.
The truth is that there are all kinds of strategies experienced criminal attorneys know how to use to raise doubts about your charge. Which one is most likely to result in a positive outcome for you depends on the specific circumstances of your case, which is where a skilled defense lawyer like Jeff Weeden comes in.
Some strategies he has had success with include:
- Challenging test results. Breathalyzers and other testing equipment are known to be surprisingly inaccurate. This can be due to mechanical failure, improper calibration, the presence of other substances in your body (like mouthwash), and more. Calling the results into question can raise enough doubts to prevent conviction.
- Challenging police procedure. Did the police really have grounds to pull you over? Did they read you your rights? If there are violations, this can help your case in court.
- Challenging lab procedure. There are certain protocols that must be followed when taking, testing, and storing BAC results. If these are not followed, the tests themselves may be stricken from the record, removing the evidence against you.
These are just a few of the strategies that Mr. Weeden may consider in your case – there are many others.
Contact Jeff Weeden Now to Give Yourself the Best Chance at Beating Your Denver DUI Charges
The bottom line is that you cannot allow yourself to be intimidated into not fighting back. Oftentimes, a skilled CO criminal defense attorney like Jeff Weeden is able to come up with arguments that reduce charges and penalties. In a number of cases, he has even been able to get charges completely dropped or dismissed.
However, he will not even have a chance to fight for you unless you reach out to him first. Get started on crafting the best possible defense right now by getting in touch with our office and going over the options available to you.