It's always better to have an attorney when facing serious charges than to not. It becomes a question of whether you can afford one. I can tell you now that there are probably in your area a number of quality attorneys that can represent you in this matter for a reasonable price. That being said, if this is your first offense, your potential exposure is most likely less than it would be if you have prior DUIs. If you do have prior DUIs, the need for an attorney becomes greater in my opinion.
A cursory glance at the facts here indicates to me that you were probably operating a vehicle as far as the DUI violation is concerned. However, the question could be one of the officer having enough probable cause for your arrest. This is where an attorney can make nuanced arguments in your favor. Your average person does not have too firm a grasp on reasonable suspicion/probable cause (even the most on the ball cops have gaps in their understanding of this area) because they are not lawyers. I think a free consultation with an attorney might help you identify if there are any issues there.
Miranda only applies to answers given during a "custodial interrogation." In Miranda a "custodial interrogation [refers to] questioning initiated by law enforcement officers after a person has been taken into custody or otherwise deprived of his freedom of action in any significant way." Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436, 444 (1966). If they try to introduce an un-Mirandized statement in court, such evidence might be suppressed. There are exceptions to this rule however.
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Simply put, you don't have time to learn everything you need to know & understand in order to achieve the best result possible.
Also, you haven't given us enough information to answer your question, in my opinion, because the answer depends on the status of your license. Did the officer take your license? Do you have the "pink" temporary ?
If you answered yes, then you also answered your question about representation.
Yes you need to hire a lawyer in your local area that knows what s/he is doing and not just an advertising mill looking to make easy money - these aren't easy to properly defend.
If you have to ask, you probably need a lawyer.
Mr. Feasel is a former Deputy DA in the SF Bay Area with over 10 years of criminal law experience. Nothing stated on this site shall in anyway be construed as legal advice, or as creating any attorney/client relationship. If you would like to hire Mr. Feasel to further investigate your situation, feel free to contact him thru this site.
You should absolutely get a DUI lawyer for your case.
Every DUI arrest has a two-prong approach to it; the Department of Motor Vehicles Administrative Per Se action and the criminal court matter. You have 10 days from the date of your arrest to set up an administrative per se hearing through the DMV by contacting the driver safety office. That phone number is located on the top right corner of the pink temporary license you should have received from the officer who arrested you.
Failing to request this hearing within 10 days of your arrest means that on the 31st day after your arrest, your license will be suspended for a period of four months, no questions asked.
Based on what little information you have provided, it appears as though there may be some excellent defenses to the criminal action as well as the DMV action if you retain the right attorney. In Bakersfield, public defenders cannot represent you in the DMV action, so it is imperative that you get counsel to save your driver's license; especially if your job requires you to maintain a valid license.
Our firm offers solid representation in this area of law since it is the only thing we practice. Please visit our website for more information or contact our office as soon as possible to assist you in defending against these charges.
The information contained in this answer does constitute legal advice nor does it constitute any warranties of any kind. Furthermore, the information provided does not in any way form a confidential attorney-client relationship and you are encouraged to seek legal counsel before relying on any portion of the information conveyed to you.
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