dui took place in greeley, co
It depends on what penalties your son/daughter are willing to accept. They are facing a mandatory one year revocation of their driving privileges if convicted and would not be eligible for any type of DL during that one year period. They are also facing a criminal conviction that can not be expunged or sealed so it would remain on their record forever.
Some judges like to give people under the age of 21 a short jail sentence to drive home the severity of this offense and their actions. If convicted, your son/daughter would be required to take drug/alcohol classes, complete community service, attend a MADD Victim Impact Panel, pay fines/court costs, be sentenced to 12-24 months of supervised probation where they would be subject to monitored sobriety and other terms and conditions of probation such as not being able to leave the state without permission, etc.
So a lot depends on what your goals and objectives are. If you want any chance of keeping this charge off of their record or you want to ensure they get the absolutely best possible outcome given the facts and circumstances surrounding the case, then yes you should hire an attorney. If your son/daughter is ok with all the penalties and consequences outlined above and they don't care about having a criminal record, then the answer is probably no.
At minimum, you should consult with a few attorneys to ensure that you understand the short-term and long-term collateral consequences and thus can make an educated and informed decision at that point.
It can't hurt to at least talk to someone. Many folks offer free consultations. Try Kent Leier at the Leier Law Firm. He used to be a Deputy District Attorney in Greeley. He should give you a straight answer about what to expect. I know Greeley has a reputation for being really tough on dui cases.
Yes, you do need to get a. Attorney here. A DUI conviction will cost him 12 points and a one year suspension if his license, approximately $450 in various court costs, more in DUI classes and volunteer work supervision and a whopping increase in his car insurance when he can drive again. You at least need to talk to an attorney schooled in this field to see what if any defenses apply and how to minimize the damage as much as possible. I do not know Mr. Meier, but he seems to qualify, as an ex- DA, as being well schooled in this field. He may also have a sympathetic ear of the prosecutor. Do not try to do this yourself.
I am bias but any time you deal with case where your liberty (jail) is at stake, you need to consult with an attorney. There are several well qualified DUI attorneys from Colorado with national reputations. (One of those provided you an answer here-Rhidian Orr) Just because an attorney may handle criminal work doesn't mean he is versed in the latest in DUI defense. DUI is a very technical area and there are many ways to attack cases that may seem pretty straight forward.
My colleagues are correct.
People who would never consider fixing there automobile or plumbing without the assistance of an expert don't apply the same logic to their legal needs, and the needs of their loved ones. An expert is your best bet, especially where an entire future may be affected.
Best of luck.
The Colorado laws concerning DUI/DWAI are strict for minors such as your son. An experienced DUI attorney will be able to analyze the police incident report to determine if there are any defenses to the underlying charges. Most attorneys who practice in this area offer a free initial consultation. You and your son should meet with several experienced attorneys and select the attorney that you are most comfortable with. Weld County does have a reputation for making "standard" offers at the plea bargain stage that typically do not feel like a "bargain" at all. If there is a legitimate defense, your son should have an attorney who will find it. If there is not a defense, your son's attorney should ensure that he obtains the best possible result and is being treated fairly.
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