DUI

DUI

Jordan New has tried and prevailed in many DUI cases. A key component in many such cases is the legality of the traffic stop and subsequent searching and testing. Mr. New is experienced in assessing the viability of a criminal charge and locating any flaws in the interactions between law enforcement and civilian. In evaluating the most favorable approach to defending a DUI charge, Mr. New will first determine whether any such flaws could support a motion to suppress evidence obtained in the investigation.

Law

Under Oregon law, a person commits the crime of driving while under the influence of intoxicants (DUII or DUI) if the person drives a vehicle while the person:

  1. Has 0.08 percent or more by weight of alcohol in the blood as shown by chemical analysis of the breath or blood of the person
  2. Is under the influence of intoxicating liquor, a controlled substance or an inhalant, or
  3. Is under the influence of any combination of intoxicating liquor, an inhalant and a controlled substance

“Under the influence” means that a person’s physical or mental faculties were adversely affected to a noticeable or perceptible degree.

Roadmap

  1. Arrest for DUI and any accompanying charges. Typical accompanying charges or Reckless Driving, Criminal Mischief (if there was an accident that caused damage to property other than the vehicle you were driving), and/or Failure to Perform the Duties of a Driver when Property is Damaged (hit and run).
  2. Contact an attorney. It is crucial to do this as soon as possible after your arrest.
  3. Initial consultation with attorney. You will discuss your case, your options, potential consequences, and payment.
  4. Decide whether to request a DMV Implied Consent hearing. If you refused a breath test or registered .08 or above on your breath test, the results will be forwarded to the Oregon DMV. The DMV will automatically suspend your license for a period of time ranging from 90 days to 3 years if you do no request a formal hearing within 10 days of your arrest.
  5. Arraignment. At this hearing the district attorney will either formally bring charges against you for DUI and any accompanying charges or will elect not to bring any charges. You will plead guilty, not guilty, or no contest.
  6. If you are eligible for Oregon’s DUI Diversion program you will be given another court date at which you can elect to enter the program. (See more about the Diversion program below.)
  7. If you are not eligible for Diversion you will be given an initial pretrial and trial date.
  8. DMV Implied Consent hearing. At this hearing you can challenge the automatic suspension for failing or refusing to take a breath test. Keep in mind that the DMV process is entirely separate from the court process that determines the outcome of the criminal DUI charge. Winning or losing in the DMV hearing does not impact the criminal case.
  9. Investigation. This is your and your attorney’s opportunity to gather additional information about your case. If there are witnesses or documentation that could cast doubt on the state’s case against you, the appropriate information will be gathered.
  10. Pretrial conference. Your attorney and the district attorney will discuss the case and whether both sides are ready for trial. Often times the case is reset to a future date at the first pretrial conference. The district attorney might make an offer to settle the case by agreeing to dismiss other charges or recommend a specific sentence if you plead guilty or no contest to the DUI charge.
  11. Further discussions with your attorney. Your attorney will explain any plea offers, your chances to prevail at trial, and any other issues that may have arisen.
  12. Trial. A jury of 6 (for a misdemeanor) or 12 (for a felony) will determine whether the state has proven its case beyond a reasonable doubt.

Diversion

Diversion is a program available in Oregon to many people charged with their first DUI. It is an attractive option because successfully completing Diversion will result in the dismissal of your DUI charge.

You are most likely eligible for Diversion if you meet all of the following criteria on the day you file your petition to enter the Diversion program:

  1. You have no pending DUI or equivalent charge in Oregon or anywhere else;
  2. You had not been convicted of DUI or equivalent charge in Oregon or anywhere else in the last 15 years;
  3. You have not been convicted of a felony DUI or equivalent charge in Oregon or anywhere else;
  4. You are not participating in a Diversion or equivalent program in Oregon or anywhere else
  5. You did not participate in a Diversion or equivalent program in Oregon or anywhere else in the 15 years before the date of the commission of the present DUI;
  6. There are no charges pending against you for an offense of murder, manslaughter, criminally negligent homicide or assault that resulted from the operation of a motor vehicle pending in Oregon or anywhere else;
  7. You have not been convicted of the offenses described in paragraph 6, above, in the 15 years before the date of the commission of the present DUI;
  8. You did not hold a commercial driver license (CDL) on the date of the commission of the present DUI;
  9. You were not operating a commercial motor vehicle at the time of the present DUI; and
  10. The present DUI did not involve an accident resulting in death or personal injury to any person other than yourself.