If you or somebody you care about has been arrested and charged with driving under the influence In Las Vegas, we understand that this can be a scary experience. While you may think about handling this situation yourself, please understand that a knowledgeable and experienced Las Vegas DUI attorney is going to be invaluable in this situation. At Okabe & Haushalter, we are going to conduct an independent investigation into the charges against you and work with the prosecution to get them reduced or dismissed altogether.

Have You Been Accused Of Driving While Under The Influence

The crime of driving under the influence (DUI) can be punished severely with heavy penalties. While penalties for felony DUI, such as having multiple offenses or causing a fatal accident, are notably harsher, there are still significant consequences for even a first offense.

Potential penalties for a first DUI include the following:

  • Up To 6 Months In Jail
  • Fines Of Up To $1,000
  • License Suspension Up To 90 Days
  • Ignition Interlock Device (IID)
  • DUI School / DUI Treatment

All too often, defendants will simply plead guilty and accept the penalties without realizing that DUI cases are not as open and shut as some would have you believe. Therefore, it is vital you have an experienced Las Vegas criminal defense lawyer to represent you and fight for you.

DUI Laws in Nevada

If you’ve been arrested for driving under the influence in Las Vegas or elsewhere in Nevada, Okabe & Haushalter can provide you with the legal information you need. You may be unfamiliar with the DUI codes and procedures in this state, especially if this is your first arrest.

View below to familiarize yourself with the DUI laws in the state of Nevada:

  • Illegal Per Se Laws: Per Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS) § 484C.110, Illegal Per Se Means Driving With A Blood Alcohol Concentration Of 0.08 Percent Or More Is Illegal In And Of Itself (For Truck Drivers, The Limit Is 0.04 Percent). Because Breath Tests Are Not Always Accurate, Drivers May Be Arrested And Even Convicted If Their BAC Was Under The Limit.
  • DUI Implied Consent Laws: According To The NRS § 484C.150, 484C.160 And 484C.200, All Licensed Drivers Give Their Implied Consent To A Chemical Test Upon Lawful Arrest Under Suspicion Of Drunk Driving. If You Refuse One Of These Tests, Your License Will Be Automatically Revoked.
  • Ignition Interlock Device (IID) Requirement: The IID May Be A Penalty If You Are Convicted Of DUI. If A Court Decides To Sentence Someone To This Program, Then The DMV Will Be Notified And The Individual Will Have To Show Proof Of Installation From An Approved Manufacturer. This Program Is At The Defendant’s Sole Expense.
  • First-Time DUI: Your First DUI, Without Any Aggravating Factors, Will Have Lighter Penalties Than DUI Charges For Those With Prior Offenses. Every Basic DUI Conviction Will Warrant Fines, Imprisonment, Community Service, DUI School, And Driver’s License Suspension. According To The Nevada Department Of Motor Vehicles (DMV), You Could Have Your Vehicle Impounded, Spend 2 To 6 Months In Jail, Be Fined Up To $1,000, And Have To Pay For Things Like A License Reinstatement.
  • DUI With Injury: If Driving Under The Influence Allegedly Resulted In The Serious Bodily Injury Of Another, The Penalties Can Be Found In NRS 484C.430.
  • DUI Causing Death: NRS § 484C.430 Also Details The Penalties For Vehicular Manslaughter In Nevada. If A Person Is Under The Influence Of Alcohol Or Another Intoxicating Substance And Causes An Accident That Results In The Death Of Another Individual, This Is Considered A Category B Felony Punishable By Minimum 2 Years And Maximum 20 Years Imprisonment And Fines From $2,000 To $5,000.

Sobriety Tests Are Meant To Be Failed

There are three standard field sobriety tests that are used by police officers in Las Vegas and throughout Nevada approved by the NHTSA. All three of these tests are ones you have probably seen on TV, and include:

  • Walk And Turn: This Is A Test That Consists Of Walking Heel To Toe For Nine Steps, Turning, And Then Walking Nine Steps Back. Officer Will Be Looking For Various Clues That Indicate Whether Or Not A Person May Be Impaired. If A Person Indicates Two Or More Of These Clues, They Will “Fail” The Test.
    • Cannot Balance During Instructions
    • Starts Before Being Told To By The Officer
    • Stops While Walking
    • Does Not Touch Heel-To-Toe
    • Steps Off The Line
    • Uses Their Arms To Balance
    • Loses Balance On The Turn Or Turns Incorrectly
    • Takes The Wrong Number Of Steps
  • One-Leg Stand: This Test Asks The Allegedly Impaired Driver To Balance On One Leg And Count “One One Thousand” And Upwards Until They Reach 30. This Test Is Designed To Measure A Driver’s Ability To Do Two Tasks At Once. An Officer Is Looking For Four Clues That A Person May Be Impaired, And Any Person Who Indicates Two Or More Will “Fail” The Test.
    • Swaying While Balancing
    • Hopping
    • Putting Their Foot Down
    • Using Their Arms To Balance
  • HGN Or Pen Test: This Is Called The “Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus Test,” And Measures Whether A Person’s Eyes Involuntarily Bounce Or Jerk When They Are All The Way To The Left Or Right.

We recommend that you not take any field sobriety tests after being pulled over for driving under the influence in Las Vegas. Yes, a refusal to perform a field sobriety test may trigger an arrest, but you also not be giving the police or prosecutors any additional information to use against you in court, such as a failed test. These tests are difficult, even for those who have not been drinking alcohol. At Okabe & Haushalter, our Las Vegas DUI lawyers have extensive experience helping clients who have taken and failed field sobriety tests. Even if you took a test and allegedly “failed,” we are still going to work diligently to formulate a sound defense on your behalf.

What to Do If Arrested for DUI in Las Vegas

Any criminal charges should be defended by a skilled attorney, and DUI charges are no exception. There is no reason to assume you will be convicted. In many cases that we defend, we discover that serious errors in police procedure took place and we can get the case dismissed. For this reason, after an arrest, the first and most critical action is to contact our firm. Do not enter a courtroom for any hearing without one of our legal team there to represent you. We are a well-respected and proven defense law firm that has extensive experience in defending DUI charges.

Defending DUI takes experience, skill, and a deep knowledge of all aspects of DUI law: testing devices, case law, the science behind breath and blood testing, as well as the law with regard to arrest procedure and probable cause. A creative, effective attorney from our firm can seek out the defense opportunities in your case and expand upon them to bring your case to court.

Were You Or Your Child Charged With Underage DUI

Per the Nevada Revised Statutes, it is illegal for an individual under 21 years of age who has been drinking or taking drugs to drive or otherwise be in physical control of a vehicle. Nevada has a “zero tolerance” policy for minors. If your BAC is over 0.02%—no matter if you are under the influence or not—you can be charged with DUI. If you are under 21 and convicted of DUI, you will have to undergo an alcohol and drug evaluation to find out whether you have abuse problems. Your driver’s license will be suspended for at least 90 days. In addition, you will have to attend DUI school, pay fines, and serve 2 days to 6 months in juvenile hall or jail. Commonly, for a first time offender, time spent in juvenile hall or jail is either suspended or changed to community service. There is also a 7-year waiting period before your criminal record is sealed.

Talk to a Skilled Las Vegas Drunk Driving Lawyer

At Okabe & Haushalter, our vast experience means we can attack your case aggressively from the onset. We can obtain the police reports, lab reports, maintenance history of the breath machine and other relevant documents in search of information or evidence that will contribute to your defense. For example, we may be able to have your case thrown out due to a discovery that the arresting officer had no just cause to pull you over in the first place. Otherwise, field sobriety tests and blood or breath tests may be found to have been administered incorrectly, misread, or otherwise lacking in reliability. This can cause the case against you to collapse on lack of evidence. Whatever is needed in your case, we can fight in an effort to defend your rights and freedom. We can also represent you in a DMV hearing in an attempt to protect your license.

Contact a Las Vegas DUI defense lawyer for help attempting to avoid a DUI conviction!

Overview of DUI Charges

An arrest for DUI can be an intimidating, embarrassing, and overwhelming. Most drivers confronted with the possibility of arrest, attempt to explain their circumstances. In every case, it is best to exercise your right to remain silent. What you say and do can make the difference between incarceration, fines, and loss of driving privileges or the freedom to carry on with your life. The right decision is to consult an attorney from the firm who knows the exact steps the state will take to prepare its case. Taking immediate action our firm can challenge the evidence against you, often successfully dismissing the state’s case at the outset.

Our lawyers have earned the respect of colleagues, judges, and members of law enforcement throughout the region. With this background of trust, we have worked effectively to defend our clients’ whether faced with a first-time DUI charge or more serious offenses. Using our knowledge of the California Vehicle Code, we understand the charges you face and what defenses will be effective. Our team has the investigative and trial experience to defend your rights against every effort the state presents, including charges of:

Facing the consequences of a DUI arrest, you may feel powerless. Choosing the right firm who will work in every way to strengthen your defenses and uphold your rights is vital. We pledge to take the time needed to understand your circumstances and guide you to take a causative, proactive role in your own defense while we prepare your case and defense strategy.

Penalties for DUI in Las Vegas

There are various penalties in place for DUI convictions, and these penalties are usually dependent on whether or not this is a person’s first DUI conviction or a subsequent offense.

  • First Offense DUI
    • Misdemeanor Offense
    • Up To Six Months In County Jail
    • $390 To $1,000 Fine
    • DUI School For Three To Nine Months
    • Six Months Ignition Interlock Device (IID) Requirement
  • Second Offense DUI
    • Misdemeanor Offense
    • 96 Hours To One Year In County Jail
    • $390 To $1,000 Fine
    • SB 38 Program For 18 To 30 Months
    • One Year Ignition Interlock Device (IID) Requirement
  • Third Offense DUI
    • Misdemeanor Offense
    • 120 Days To One Year In County Jail
    • $390 To $1,000 Fine
    • SB 38 Program For 30 Months
    • Two Year Ignition Interlock Device (IID) Requirement
  • DUI With Injury (Misdemeanor)
    • 5 Days To One Year In County Jail
    • $390 To $5,000 Fine (Plus Restitution To Victims)
    • SB 38 Program For 3, 18, Or 30 Months
    • Six Month Ignition Interlock Device (IID) Requirement Or License Suspension For One Year
  • DUI With Injury (Felony)
    • 16 Months To 16 Years In State Prison
    • $1,015 To $5,000 Fine (Plus Restitution To Victims)
    • SB 38 Program For 18 Or 30 Months
    • One Year Ignition Interlock Device (IID) Requirement
  • Felony DUI
    • 16 Months, 2 Years, Or 3 Years In State Prison
    • $390 To $1,000 Fine
    • SB 38 Program For 18 Or 30 Months
    • Up To Five Years Driver’s License Suspension

In addition to the statutory penalties mentioned above for a first-time DUI conviction, you also need to keep in mind various other consequences of a DUI. A DUI conviction will show up on your criminal record, and this can significantly influence your ability to get a job.

Can You be Arrested for drug DUI

Under California Vehicle Code Section 23152(f) VC, we can see that driving under the influence of drugs is considered a criminal offense. This includes driving under the influence of marijuana, even though recreational use of this drug is legal.

You can most certainly be pulled over and arrested for driving under the influence of drugs. While there is no breathalyzer test that can be used to determine a person’s level of intoxication on narcotics, law enforcement officials will use other means to determine whether or not a person is impaired. The charges and penalties for a DUI based on narcotics will be the same as the penalties listed above.

Do Not Rely on a Public Defender for your Las Vegas DUI case

If you or somebody you love have been arrested and charged with DUI in Las Vegas, you need to speak to an attorney about your case as soon as possible. Technically, you will have access to a public defender for your case. However, we strongly encourage you not to rely on a public defender in these situations. Public defenders are overworked and will have dozens of cases to handle at the same time. However, when you turn to the Las Vegas DUI attorneys at Okabe & Haushalter, you are ensuring that you have a team focused on your case. Our goal is to investigate every aspect of your situation in order to get the charges against you reduced or dismissed altogether. You can contact us today by clicking here or calling 415-448-7992 for a free consultation.

Fighting to Keep Your Record Clean

While being charged is a serious matter, there are viable defenses available that have been used across California to help defendants find a favorable outcome. Our Las Vegas attorneys are well-versed in state DUI laws and have found consistent success securing minimized sentences or even getting charges dropped. Our attorneys understand how critical success is for our clients, and we welcome the opportunity to fight for your most urgent legal needs.

Contact a Las Vegas DUI lawyer from Okabe & Haushalter to discuss your defense!

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