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Client Victories: Turning DUI Charges into ‘Wet Reckless’ at Rancho Cucamonga Courthouse

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Client Background Our client, residing in Los Angeles County, faced a challenging situation in Rancho Cucamonga but we were still able to get them a wet reckelss . Caught speeding at 95 mph in a 60 mph zone, he was subsequently charged with a first DUI (Driving Under the Influence) for having a blood alcohol level exceeding the legal limit of 0.08%.

Challenges Faced Due to the client’s inability to travel frequently between Los Angeles and Rancho Cucamonga, managing court appearances became a significant hurdle. The client engaged our services to navigate the complexities of his case efficiently.

Legal Strategy: Rising Blood Alcohol Defense Our defense strategy centered around the concept of ‘rising blood alcohol.’ Initially, our client’s preliminary alcohol screening indicated a level of 0.085%, with a later blood test showing 0.10%. We argued that at the time of driving, his blood alcohol level could have been lower, possibly in the absorption stage, indicating he was not under the influence while driving.

Court Proceedings and Negotiations At the arraignment, the prosecution sought a standard DUI conviction, which would include three years of probation and over $2,000 in fines. We entered a not guilty plea on behalf of our client and proceeded to the pretrial stage, focusing on negotiations and the presentation of evidence.

Outcome: Reduced Charges and Probation Through effective advocacy, we persuaded the Rancho Cucamonga District Attorney to reduce the charges from DUI to ‘wet reckless.’ This outcome significantly decreased our client’s probation period to one year and ensured the DUI charge would be removed from his record after three years, saving him thousands in insurance premiums.

Conclusion: Advocacy Without Client’s Court Presence Our client remained in Los Angeles while we handled all proceedings at the Rancho Cucamonga courthouse. This case exemplifies our commitment to providing comprehensive legal services, regardless of the client’s location. If you face a similar situation, we encourage you to contact us for a consultation.

How can you effectively represent a client who is unable to be present in court?

Representing people who are unable to be present in court is a significant part of our business. We recognize that life goes on, and it’s often impossible to attend court for half a day, several times, for your case. A key service we provide at our office, and take pride in, is our ability to represent such clients. The legal authority allowing us to represent people who can’t be present in court is under Penal Code 977A. We utilize this to benefit our clients, sparing them hours of waiting in hallways and playing with their phones.

What communication methods do you use to keep clients informed when they can’t attend court sessions?

The communication methods we use to keep our clients informed when they cannot attend court sessions include cell phones and personal client portals. We pride ourselves on using modern technology to facilitate and simplify processes for our clients. For instance, I give out my cell phone number to my clients, so they can bypass several gatekeepers to talk directly with their attorney. Moreover, instead of making clients wait in the office, they can call me or set up a Webex or Zoom conference.

What led to the decision to charge the client with DUI despite a blood alcohol level close to the legal limit?

The decision to charge the client with DUI was influenced by a blood alcohol content of 0.10, while the legal limit in California is 0.08. Upon reviewing the police report, an attorney at the Rancho Cucamonga Courthouse felt they could build a case against our client because his blood alcohol level at the time of the chemical test was 0.10.

How did the ‘rising blood alcohol’ defense strategy work in this particular case?

The ‘rising blood alcohol‘ defense is a successful DUI defense strategy. It argues that at the time of driving, your blood alcohol level was below 0.08. This is supported by the fact that his blood alcohol content at the time of the chemical test was 0.10, with a breath test reading of 0.085. Despite being over 0.08 in the breath test, an argument could still be made that he was in the absorption stage, possibly having a blood alcohol level of 0.04 and not intoxicated for driving purposes, but still reading 0.085 at the time of the test. This is because when a person is still in the absorptive stage, the blood alcohol content will read higher on breath machines.

How do you prepare and present evidence for a DUI case at the pretrial stage, especially in situations involving complex defenses like ‘rising blood alcohol’?

Preparing and presenting evidence for a DUI case at the pretrial stage can be challenging or straightforward. It’s difficult when dealing with a newer District Attorney who doesn’t understand the rising blood alcohol defense and focuses only on the numbers. It’s easier with a seasoned District Attorney who understands the science and can realistically assess the case’s value.

Can you explain the negotiation process with the district attorney that led to the reduction of charges from DUI to ‘wet reckless’?

Yes, as mentioned earlier, the negotiation process with the District Attorney involved presenting the case as a borderline one. The blood alcohol content of 0.10 and the fact that speeding was the reason for the pullover were key factors. According to the NHTSA manual, many cues suggest driving under the influence, but speeding is not one of them.

What are the legal implications and benefits for a client when DUI charges are reduced to ‘wet reckless’?

A ‘wet reckless’ charge in California has a third of the probation time and also lasts a third as long on your California DMV record. Additionally, the fines are about half, and the classes are approximately one-third as long. There are many benefits to a ‘wet reckless’ charge over a DUI.

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Hand down the best attorney I have ever worked with!!! My friend recommended Hieu because I needed to expunge something I did when I was young and dumb. Hieu is very humble, personable, and made me feel very comfortable. He's surprisingly funny too. Something not all lawyers are / can do. His pricing is very reasonable and he updated me on everything frequently. I highly recommend him!!!!

Lila K

I had interviewed many attorneys to discuss my very unfortunate situation that was set by someone I knew. Hieu Vu was the most honest, caring, and professional attorney with compassion and empathy I ever interviewed. HE REALLY HAD A HEART. His fees were very reasonable and he will fight for you not just for your dollars but because he cares for his clients... I would strongly recommend him if you feel your life is upside down. Things happen but we learn to become better person.

Mark K

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