It would help if you took driving under the influence (DUI) criminal charges seriously. When arrested and charged, the quality of your legal defense can alter your life forever. You can serve time, pay fines, and lose your driving privileges if convicted. A conviction can also affect your employment and future job opportunities. You need help navigating the complicated legal justice system. Seeking legal guidance from a seasoned and dedicated criminal defense law firm makes the difference in whether you can fight for your rights and prospects in the face of criminal prosecution.
At Los Angeles DUI Lawyer, we take pride in offering aggressive defense and quality representation for DUI defendants throughout Los Angeles. For many years, our legal team has proudly secured favorable case outcomes for defendants whose rights have been violated by law enforcers without including hefty fees.
Through our professional guidance, you will have peace of mind knowing that we will do everything efficiently; our attorney will work to protect your constitutional rights and seek a positive case resolution.
We recognize that people who walk through our doors are good people in bad situations with challenges. We neither push criminal cases to trial to move on nor treat clients as numbers or nameless, faceless cases. Instead, we dedicate time to understanding you and your legal objectives, listening to your concerns, and answering your questions. We believe in personal and one-on-one legal attention, so you will have the opportunity to understand we will handle your legal options and your case with diligence, professionalism, and care. This type of attorney-client relationship and result-oriented approach results in developing the most effective legal defenses and approaches.
Why Los Angeles DUI Lawyer Makes the Difference
On top of many years of combined experience, there are many reasons why Los Angeles DUI Lawyer makes a difference.
We are firm believers that a robust defense does not start in the courtroom; instead, after you are accused of an offense, which is why we provide free case reviews. However, most seasoned law offices offer free initial consultations. Still, they fail to tell you that you will meet an administrator or case manager, not the lawyer working on your criminal case. Then, the legal professional will supervise the case manager and not do the thorough work on your case.
Our skilled attorneys handle cases differently and are actively involved in all stages. We only permit competent persons to work on cases. When you contact us, we will match you with an expert who will work to understand you and your legal goals and provide updates on the case. To aid us in understanding your legal objectives better, we will ask questions like:
- Do you want to avoid incarceration and paying fines?
- Do you want to keep your record clean?
- Do you want to resolve the case quickly?
We can offer you assistance and advice tailored to your unique circumstances throughout the criminal case. Call us today at 310-273-9600 to learn more about the help we can provide.
We Provide a Unique Blend of Courtroom Experience and Legal Insight
When you think about it, everyone wants to fight for their rights, but none want to go to court. If we can save you huge sums of money and time and help you achieve the best results without proceeding to trial, that is the route we would take. Regrettably, that is only sometimes the truth; most cases are resolved in court.
Bearing that in mind, you can rest assured that your criminal case is positioned for success with us in your corner. We are no strangers to litigation. We do not shy away from courtroom trials; our philosophy is that it is best to be prepared for different possible case outcomes. Our many years of experience, strategic skills, and confidence make us the ideal legal professional to fight for your freedom and rights. Our dedication to our clients and competitive nature drive us to achieve satisfactory case outcomes.
Every DUI case is unique, and no defense attorney can guarantee a specific case result. Nevertheless, having a proven track record of good performance is a measure of a lawyer’s quality work that potential clients should consider.
We construct a vigorous and thorough defense for our clients. Thanks to our perseverance, diligence, focus, and hard work. Over the years, we have secured numerous case dismissals for defendants facing felonies and misdemeanors. In a case where the defendant does not desire to proceed to trial, and the prosecutor refuses to dismiss the charges, we have effectively engaged in plea bargain negotiations that significantly reduce charges or penalties.
Other favorable case outcomes we have consistently achieved for our clients include the following:
- Bail reductions
- Alternative sentencing options like home arrest, electronic monitoring, community service, drug diversion program, and drug treatment program
- Suppression of evidence based on police misconduct and violation of the defendant’s constitutional rights
For a confidential consultation with a nationally recognized criminal defense leader, contact us at 310-273-9600.
Our Qualified and Competent Legal Team
While a personal approach is crucial, we still must be experts on the law. The law is constantly changing, and you require a professional who stays up to date with all changes. We strive to stay ahead of emerging issues in our field, attend lectures routinely at seminars, and stay on top of evolving legal issues. Simply put, there is no substitute for hard work, and it includes after-hours efforts. Contact our knowledgeable legal team to discuss how to fight your case.
Our DUI-specialized lawyers use a team approach to handle cases. We collaborate to find pragmatic and innovative solutions to your case. We listen to your concerns to understand you and achieve your legal objectives.
On top of our skills, experience, and knowledge, our legal team live up to excellent ethical standards and is recognized for zealous, careful, and honest representation. Our loyal client base, client reviews, and referrals demonstrate our reputation. The reputation originates from being personable, approachable, and friendly, and clients can trust us with their life.
At Los Angeles DUI Lawyer, we understand that nothing compounds the stress of facing criminal charges more than the inability to reach your attorney. We are dedicated to offering legal representation, moral support, and emotional support and put a premium on our accessibility. To realize this, we observe the following policies:
- All client phone calls, texts, and emails are returned the same day
- All clients get the personal contact details of their attorneys
About Jonathan Franklin − What Is in a Name
Numerous words can describe Jonathan Franklin- relentless, charismatic, friendly, skilled, tenacious- but most of all, he is caring. He recognizes that being a great litigator requires two essential skills: caring about clients and tenacious lawyering. Jonathan treats each client like an individual, not a file, and gives them the attention necessary to handle their case. You can expect that he will be with you throughout your criminal case.
Our clients are Jonathan Franklin’s priority. When your freedom is at stake, a simple mistake should not derail a lifetime of hard work and career development. He also understands the present and future consequences of an accusation. Therefore, as a time-proven Los Angeles DUI defense attorney, he is dedicated to you, your future, and your family.
Defendants and their loved ones often ask Jonathan Franklin if he is competent. Later, in the same breath, they ask rhetorical questions of whether they need a skilled lawyer. Jonathan categorically assures them that they require a professional, qualified, friendly, and respectful attorney because that is how he treats clients.
While he pays attention to defendants, he is also civil to everyone, witnesses, jury members, and the prosecution team. Courtesy and respect stay in style. He does not need to shout and scream to get his way. The words he chooses, the sound of his voice, and the power of his pen, supported by his legal knowledge and experience, are adequate.
Former Prosecutor Turned a Criminal Defense Attorney
Jonathan Franklin graduated from the University of Colorado, Boulder. He later attended Stetson University College of Law, earning his law degree. While in school, Jonathan actively served as a Special Assistant Public Defender. He later served as the Assistant State Attorney, gaining experience prosecuting various crimes. However, his passion was in criminal defense, and he understood the agony of misunderstood defendants and the complexity of criminal laws. So, he opened Los Angeles DUI Lawyer, a private law firm that offers individualized, honest, and intelligent services to driving under the influence (DUI) defendants.
Clients in need of legal representation have several choices. However, only a few of these attorneys you can hire have the unique degree of insight and experience held by Jonathan Franklin. As a former prosecutor who draws from many years of experience, Jonathan knows the “other side.”
A prosecutor makes DUI accusations. As a former prosecutor, Jonathan knows the tricks and tactics the prosecution uses to make cases because he has used them. He can precisely anticipate their plan and strategies before they begin executing them and explore different options to realize a favorable case outcome.
Additionally, as a former prosecutor, Jonathan knows that when a prosecutor is focused and has intent on a criminal conviction, they turn a blind eye to issues that compromise the case against the DUI defendant. His experience and insight allow him to realize the vulnerability of the prosecution team and the police, and he harnesses the knowledge to his clients’ advantage.
He is constantly working in courtrooms throughout California and has built positive professional relationships and a robust reputation among judges, prosecuting attorneys, and other criminal defense lawyers. They understand that he is experienced on both sides of legal proceedings, and they are hesitant to challenge his skills. His commitment to maintaining integrity, professional respect, and trust is added layer to his practice’s foundation that he depends on when serving his clients.
Jonathan Franklin is more than an average criminal defense attorney. He uses his position within the Los Angeles community to support cultural and charitable organizations. As your compassionate and friendly defense lawyer, he wants you to know that you and your loved one matter most to him and is here to serve.
On top of that, he is a member of many boards, including:
- Board of Governors of the Beverly Hills Bar Association
- Delegation Committee of the Los Angeles County Bar Association
- Board of Directors of Hollywood Heights
- The Order of Distinguished Attorneys
- An active member of the Screen Actor’s Guild
California DUI Laws
California Vehicle Code 23152 defines driving under the influence as driving your car with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08% or more. Being under the influence means your physical or mental abilities are too impaired by a substance for you to operate your car with the caution of a sober driver under similar circumstances. The substance can be alcohol, prescription drug, or illicit drugs.
DUI penalties vary depending on the following:
- whether any person was injured due to your conduct and
- whether you have a previous DUI crime on your record.
While most drunk driving crimes are misdemeanors, a crime can become a felony if a person is hurt, you have a previous felony DUI conviction, or you have at least three prior DUI convictions within the lookback period (ten years).
If arrested for a DUI crime in California, you have ten (10) days to request your hearing at the Department of Motor Vehicles. The DMV hearing postpones license suspension until your administrative per se hearing is resolved. It can sometimes lead to the license suspension being set aside. If you seek our legal services within the ten-day timeframe, we can request the DMV hearing on your behalf and represent you at the hearing.
First−Time DUI Crime
If convicted of DUI for the first time, you will face a misdemeanor punishable by the following potential penalties:
- A maximum five-year probation
- Six months in county jail
- Up to one thousand dollars in fine
- Enrolling in a drug/alcohol education program for up to nine months
The judge can order you to install an ignition interlock device for six months to continue enjoying driving privileges
Second DUI Crime Consequences and Penalties
The penalties, sentencing, and consequences for a second drunk driving conviction within the look-back period include:
- Summary probation for five years
- Up to a year in jail
- Fines that range between $390 and $1,000
- Attending and completing a thirty-month DUI school
- Compulsory IID installation for a year (The IID allows you to drive anywhere. Otherwise, the DMV hearing officer will suspend the license for two (2) years)
Third−time Driving Under the Influence Penalties
A third DUI offense within the look-back period is a misdemeanor that carries the following penalties:
- Up to five (5) years of informal probation
- Enrolling and completing a thirty-month DUI school
- Up to one thousand dollars in fine
- A year in jail
- IID installation for two (2) years
- DMV designation as a habitual traffic offender
Driving Under the Influence Causing Injury
DUI causing injury is a California wobbler. You can be charged with a felony or misdemeanor, depending on your criminal record and case facts.
If you are found guilty of DUI where an individual other than you sustained injuries, you will face the following penalties under VC 23153. A misdemeanor carries:
- Three (3) to five (5) years of informal probation
- A one-year county jail sentence
- 30 months in DUI school
- A maximum fine of five thousand dollars
- Compulsory six months of IID installation
- Restitution to the injured persons
On the other hand, a felony is punishable by:
- Sixteen (16) months to ten (10) years in state prison and additional and consecutive one to six years in prison, depending on the number of persons injured and the degree of their injuries
- A California strike under the Three Strikes law
- A fine that ranges from $1,015 to $5,000
- Up to thirty months in DUI school
- Mandatory ignition interlock device for three years
- Restitution to the injured parties
- HTO status for three (3) years
Penalties for California DUI Felony
You will face a felony if you have more than four DUI convictions within ten years. Its penalties include the following:
- Sixteen (16) months, two (2) years, or three (3) years in prison
- A maximum of one thousand dollars in fine
- Compulsory IID installation for a years
- HTO designation
DUI Causing Death
If your drunk driving conduct led to death, you would face a California strike on the criminal record under the Three Strikes law and life imprisonment.
Under zero tolerance law, it is illegal for a person below 21 to drive with a BAC greater than 0.01%. In other words, it is a crime for an underage motorist to drive with measurable alcohol in their bloodstream. Young drivers are more likely to be affected by alcohol and less experienced in driving, making it essential to impose these limitations to ensure the safety of all road users.
The DMV can suspend or revoke your driver’s license if you are convicted of underage DUI.
Depending on your BAC level, you can face numerous penalties, including:
- A year driver’s license suspension
- One hundred dollars in fine
- Attending DUI school for three months
If the motorist has multiple DUI crimes, the DMV will withdraw their driving privileges for two or three years. And if your BAC was higher than 0.8%, you will be charged as an adult regardless of age.
DUI With a Commercial Driver’s License
VC 23152(d) makes operating a commercial car with a BAC of 0.04% or greater illegal. These strict legal limits apply whether you are impaired by alcohol or not.
The limit applies when you are driving a commercial car. That means if you are driving a non-commercial motor vehicle like a small truck, motorcycle, or car, the standard legal limit of 0.08% applies.
Potential criminal penalties for commercial motorists convicted of their first DUI crime include the following:
- A year in jail
- Summary probation
- Up to one thousand dollars in fine
- A maximum of three years of DUI school
These penalties enhance with subsequent convictions. If convicted of DUI with injury, the judge will subject you to a felony.
The DMV will also withdraw your driving privileges for more than a year. The suspension will apply even if you were not driving a commercial vehicle during the crime commission. Additionally, it will apply if you were arrested for drunk driving and refused to take a chemical test.
You will lose your commercial license for life if you are convicted of a second drunk driving crime.
Common Strategies We Use to Fight Drunk Driving Criminal Charges
Defense strategies are legal actions and arguments taken to get criminal charges reduced or dismissed altogether. Developing a legal strategy goes beyond telling the truth in a manner that shows your innocence or reduces legal culpability. Instead, it involves analyzing the case facts and identifying gaps and flaws in the crime’s elements that the prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt.
At Los Angeles DUI Lawyer, we bring our collective intellect, legal acumen, and trial and appellate experience to all cases so you can benefit from “team thinking” to protect your rights. We review cases from different angles and use our legal skills and creativity to identify effective ways to approach the DUI case and tactics we can use to win and prepare for trial.
Most law firms take a wait-and-see approach and stall until the arraignment before working on the DUI case. At Los Angeles DUI Lawyer, we believe that is no time to waste. The most vital window for defense is immediately after your arrest or before the prosecutor files the formal charges. Getting to work immediately allows us to identify favorable defense witnesses and evidence and get a head-start toward beating your charges.
Below are some DUI defenses we use to beat criminal charges:
Breath Test Errors
While a breath test is a prevalent way to determine blood alcohol concentration, it is not always the correct one. The breath test does not measure the amount of alcohol in your system. Instead, it measures the amount of alcohol in the breath and then converts the amount to determine the alcohol amount in your bloodstream.
Breath tests are subject to numerous errors, including:
- Instrument malfunction
- Your physiological condition, like your diet and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
- Improper police handling
- Outside environmental factors like radio frequency interference
Violation of Title 17 of the California Code of Regulations
Title 17 sets forth rules about how the government should conduct chemical tests. Usually, the prosecutor uses blood, breath, and urine tests to support that you drove with a BAC greater than 0.08%.
Title 17 requirements for blood tests include:
- An authorized individual should perform the blood draw
- The technician should not use an alcohol-based cleaning agent to sterilize the draw site
- There should be an adequate amount of preservative and anticoagulant in the blood viral
- The preservative or anticoagulant in the vial should not be expired
- The preservative or anticoagulant should be adequately mixed with your sample
- Your blood sample should be appropriately stored
Additionally, the following Title 17 stipulates procedures and rules for drunk driving breath tests:
- Your breath sample should come from deep lung air
- The police should observe you for more than fifteen minutes before performing the chemical test
- You should not eat, smoke, drink, regurgitate, or vomit during that time
- The breath test gadget should be calibrated after 150 uses or even ten days (whichever happens first)
Urine tests are less prevalent than breath or blood tests. Generally, they are administered if other chemical tests are unavailable or you are suspected of driving under the influence of drugs. Per Title 17, you should void your bladder before offering a urine sample twenty minutes later. Additionally, the urine sample should be stored for a year so you can retest it later at an independent lab.
Suppose your breath, urine, or blood test results form part of the proof against you. In that case, our skilled defense lawyer will investigate the likelihood of Title 17 violations that can help discredit the results. The violation can show that the blood alcohol concentration results are incorrect. We will work aggressively to achieve any of the following:
- Persuade the prosecution to agree to plea bargain negotiations to lesser charges like dry reckless or wet reckless
- Ensure the jury returns a not-guilty verdict at trial
- Ensure the prosecution dismisses the criminal charges
We could file a blood split motion if you took a blood or urine test. The motion requests the prosecution to hand over the remaining part of your sample so we can re-test it at an independent lab.
Absence of Probable Cause for Your DUI Traffic Stop
Before law enforcers can stop you, detain you to conduct investigations, or arrest you, they should have probable cause (reasonable belief or suspicion that you violated the law).
If the police do not have probable cause before the investigation, we will work to suppress the obtained evidence. When the jury suppresses evidence, the prosecutor cannot use it against you.
The Police Failed to Read You Miranda Warnings
The police should read you Miranda warnings after arresting you and when the law enforcers conduct custodial interrogations. A custodial interrogation occurs when the police ask you questions to obtain incriminating responses.
Otherwise, we will work to have your subsequent statement excluded from proof by filing a motion. Depending on your case factors, the exclusion can lead to dismissed or reduced criminal charges.
Innocent Explanations for Physical Signs and Symptoms of Drunk Driving
In all probability, the police officer will argue that you showed either a flushed face, unstable gait, red eyes, or an alcoholic odor on your breath. Whether the description is correct, these signs do not necessarily mean you were drunk driving. Some of the innocent explanations we can use to fight the unfair drunk driving charges include:
- The sun
- Physical injuries
Bad Driving Does Not Necessarily Mean Driving Under the Influence
Our skilled DUI attorneys can also build a defense around speeding, erratic driving, and weaving are results of distractions or inattention- something the jury can relate to. Probably, you were:
- Tending to a child
- Navigating the GPS
Engaging in Plea Bargain Negotiations
A plea bargain in a drunk driving case is a negotiated alternative to take your case to a jury trial. Typically, a plea bargain involves either a charge reduction or a sentence reduction.
To receive a sentence reduction, you will plead no contest or guilty to DUI. In exchange, you will receive a set of agreed-upon penalties. It will save you the uncertainty of waiting to see what sentence the judge will impose if you are convicted at trial.
On the other hand, a charge reduction involves you pleading guilty to lesser criminal charges with lighter criminal penalties than your DUI conviction.
Common charge reductions in DUI plea bargains include dry reckless, wet reckless, and exhibition of speed. And if the prosecution case is weak, our skilled defense attorney can negotiate a charge reduction to:
- Drinking alcohol in your care
- A traffic infraction
- Drunk in public
At Los Angeles DUI Lawyer, we understand that given the stress of a conviction, it is tempting to accept the prosecutor’s offer to end the suffering. While it might seem a kind gesture, the prosecutor does not have your best interests. Sometimes prosecutors offer plea bargains if their evidence against you is weak, and they believe they will lose at trial. They can also offer it to lower their workload.
Whatever the reason, the prosecutor is not your friend, is a government employee, and works on the assumption that you are guilty. Our experienced defense attorney will evaluate the case facts to determine whether the offer is in your best interest. Numerous collateral consequences of a DUI conviction go beyond serving time.
Case Review With Our Attention to Detail and Dedicated Defense Attorneys
When facing DUI charges, it can feel like you are alone. You require a trustworthy person to offer you solid defense representation and advice. At Los Angeles DUI Lawyer, our attorneys have the experience to guide you through the process, help you make informed decisions, and address your concerns.
Felony or misdemeanor charges come with numerous questions. How will a conviction affect my life, career, family, finances, and freedom? Should I plead guilty? Scheduling your consultation is the initial step to eliminating your stress. Our knowledgeable team will answer your questions and explain the California criminal judicial system, your charges, and what to anticipate, putting your mind at ease.
We will also dedicate quality time to understanding you and your case circumstances. Every story has two sides; you are the best resource for understanding what happened. As a former prosecutor, Jonathan Franklin will review your case, considering its weaknesses and strengths. Although you might prefer to avoid hearing the potential penalties of your charges, we will prepare you for the worst while we work aggressively to ensure it does not happen.
Please call us at 310-273-9600 to book your initial no-obligation case review.