COLORADO SPRINGS LAWYERS
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A Colorado Springs DUI arrest doesn’t mean that your life and reputation are forever ruined.
With the right DUI attorney on your side, DUI charges are often reduced or dismissed entirely. Contact us for professional help from an experienced criminal defense lawyer today.
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Learn how we can help you:
- Keep your license
- Dismiss or reduce a DUI charge
- Avoid heavy fines
- Avoid possible jail time
- Avoid outrageous insurance costs
- Restore your reputation
BEAT DUI CHARGES IN COLORADO SPRINGS
DUI cases are difficult but winnable. This can be true even if strong field sobriety test evidence is available against you. But the hard proof necessary to convict you is not always present, like an accurate breath test result or probable cause.
Over 400 drivers in the greater Colorado Springs area are charged with DUI each year. Many of those charged with DUI in Colorado Springs are successfully defended by our lawyers each year.
Even if a case cannot be dismissed, the charges or penalties for a DUI conviction are often reduced. To do so requires detailed knowledge of the Colorado DUI law. A skilled Colorado Springs DUI lawyer will put you in the very best position to beat your DUI charge.
WHAT TO EXPECT WHEN FACING A DUI CHARGE
Like any crime, being arrested for DUI in Colorado Springs can be a very stressful and frightening experience. If you have been charged with DUI, it is crucial to understand what you are up against and what you can expect as the case moves forward.
Here is a look at some of the things you may be facing if you have been arrested for a DUI in Colorado Springs:
- Colorado DMV automatically suspends your license for 9 months for a 1st DUI. If you refuse to take a chemical test, your license will be suspended for one year. This is referred to as an “administrative proceeding”, and you have only 7 days to fight this automatic suspension by requesting a DMV hearing.
- After your arrest, your criminal case begins with the police taking you to jail for booking. This process includes taking your photograph and fingerprints and collecting other information about you. You will be placed in a holding cell until your arraignment before a judge.
- At your arraignment, which is typically held within a few days of your arrest, the judge will formally charge you with DUI and set a bond amount. If you cannot post bail, you will remain in jail until your trial.
- Once your case goes to trial, the prosecutors will present evidence against you and try to prove that you were impaired at the time of your arrest. You could face many penalties if convicted, including jail time, fines, and a driver’s license suspension. In some cases, you may also be required to install an ignition interlock device on your vehicle.
A DUI is a serious charge that must be fought by an experienced DUI attorney to protect your liberty, reputation, and future. An attorney can immediately help you by arranging for bail and representing you at arraignment.
Most importantly, top rated Colorado Springs DUI lawyers will begin the process of building a strong defense to fight the charges all the way to trial if necessary.
DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE IN COLORADO
Most people think of DUI as someone stumbling drunk behind the wheel. But in reality, many DUI’s are charged based on nothing more than an field sobriety test (also referred to as “Roadside Maneuvers”) or a breathalyzer test.
Driving with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08% or higher in Colorado will get you arrested for DUI. A BAC reading below .08% will be charged as “driving while ability impaired” (DWAI) for operating a motor vehicle with even the slightest degree of impairment due to alcohol. A non-alcohol DUID will be charged as a DUI or DWAI depending on the percentage of drugs in your blood test results.
However, all chemical tests have inherent human and mechanical flaws that can be exploited by an experienced criminal defense Colorado Springs DUI lawyers to challenge the evidence against you in court.
FELONY OR MISDEMEANOR DUI
Any DUI charge is serious, but there is a significant difference in penalties for a misdemeanor DUI vs. felony DUI. The differences between the two are mainly based on the driver’s BAC and whether there was an accident involved.
Colorado typically charges DUI and driving while ability impaired (DWAI) as a traffic misdemeanor crime.
Felony DUI can be charged if:
It’s your 4th or more DUI. Known as Colorado’s “DUI Four Strikes” law, CRS 42-4-1301 requires drivers charged with a fourth or more DUI to face a class 4 felony charge.
You caused serious bodily harm to a person (Vehicular Assault).
You caused an accident in which someone was killed (Vehicular Homicide).
FIELD SOBRIETY TEST (FST)
During a DUI traffic stop in Colorado Springs, the officer will likely ask you to perform a series of field sobriety tests. These tests are designed to give law enforcement officers an idea of whether or not they are impaired.
The most common FST is the “one-leg stand” test. The officer will instruct you to stand on one leg and count out loud for 30 seconds in this test without wobbling or losing your balance.
Another common FST is the “walk and turn” test. In this test, the officer will instruct you to walk heel-to-toe in a straight line for nine steps, turn around, and then walk back without stumbling or losing your balance.
The final type of FST is the “horizontal gaze nystagmus” test. In this test, the officer will instruct you to follow a moving object with your eyes. The officer will be looking to see if your eyes jerk or twitch when you follow the object.
The officer may ask you to perform any number of other tasks. These could include counting aloud, touching your nose, or reciting the alphabet. If you fail, or refuse to participate in any of these tests, you will likely be arrested on suspicion of DUI.
BLOOD ALCOHOL CONTENT (BAC) TESTS
In addition to FST’s, officers will often ask drivers to submit to a chemical test to measure their BAC. The most common chemical tests are breath, blood, and urine tests.
The scientific explanation for how these tests work is relatively simple. Alcohol is a small molecule that dissolves easily in water. When alcohol enters the bloodstream, it is quickly distributed throughout the body, including the lungs.
When you breathe into a breathalyzer machine, it measures the amount of alcohol in your lungs and estimates your BAC. Blood tests work similarly – a small sample of blood is taken and tested for alcohol content. Urine tests are not as accurate as breath or blood tests, but they can still be used to measure BAC.
Breathalyzers are machines that measure the amount of alcohol in a person’s body by measuring the amount of alcohol in their breath. When you blow into a breathalyzer, it measures the amount of alcohol in your system and gives you a reading. The reading is then used to determine whether or not you are over the legal limit for driving.
There are two types of breathalyzers: portable and evidentiary. Portable breathalyzers are small hand-held devices police officers use to test people they suspect of drunk driving. Evidentiary breathalyzers are larger machines that are usually found at police stations. They are used to test people who have been arrested for drunk driving.
Breathalyzers are not perfect. They can give false readings for several reasons. One reason is that they can be affected by other things besides alcohol, such as mouthwash, cough syrup, or mints. Another reason is that they can be affected by how much you have eaten or how fast you blow into the machine. If you have food in your stomach, it will take longer for the alcohol to reach your lungs and show up on the test.
The most accurate way to determine your BAC is through a blood test. Blood tests are primarily done at a hospital or medical facility, and they require taking a sample of your blood. The blood is then transported to a laboratory for analysis. The results of the blood test can take several weeks to come back.
Blood tests are more accurate than FSTs, but they’re also more invasive. An officer will need to draw blood from the driver to get a blood sample. This can be done with a needle or through a process called “venipuncture.”
After an arrest, drivers will usually be taken to the police station for booking. They will be asked to submit to a chemical test of their breath, blood, or urine during this process. The results of the chemical test can be used as evidence in court.
Blood tests are generally considered the most accurate way to measure BAC. This is because BAC levels peak about 30-60 minutes after drinking, so a blood test taken during this period will give the most accurate reading.
However, there are several ways that a blood test can go wrong. First, the sample may not represent your true BAC – for example, if you have been sweating a lot or vomiting shortly before the test. Second, the lab could make a mistake in testing or analyzing the sample. And finally, even if everything is done correctly, there is always a margin of error with any scientific measurement.
DEFENSE AGAINST BAC TESTS
It is critical to speak with an expert attorney if you have been charged with DUI based on a chemical test. A conviction in DUI cases can result in jail, fines, and the suspension of your license, among other things. An experienced criminal defense attorney can examine the evidence in your case and determine whether a DUI defense may be available.
If the police did not follow correct protocol when delivering the test, or if the lab made a mistake in testing or analyzing the sample, the charges could be dropped or reduced. If you have been charged with DUI, do not hesitate to call an experienced lawyer who can assist you in defending yourself.
It’s importaint to grasp the difference between field and chemical testing. DUI FST’s are roadside assessments conducted by law enforcement to detect whether a driver is intoxicated or ability impaired. Chemical tests, on the other hand, are used to determine the amount of alcohol or drugs in a person’s system.
A Breathalyzer machine or blood draw from the suspect can be used to do a DUI BAC test. DUI FSTs and chemical tests will likely be used in court to convict a driver. If you are charged with DUI, don’t delay – talk with an expert DUI lawyer who can assist you in formulating a DUI criminal defense to defeat the evidence against you.
WHAT IF YOU REFUSE BAC TESTS?
You cannot beat a drunk driving charge by refusing to take a breathalyzer test or field sobriety test. If you are pulled over on suspicion of DUI, the officer has the right to arrest you and take you into custody if you refuse roadside testing. If you refuse to take the test, you will automatically be charged with DUI, and your license will be suspended.
In some states, like Colorado, refusal to take a DUI test is considered a separate crime that carries its own penalties. So, even if you are not convicted of DUI, you can still face jail time and fines for refusing to take the test.
In addition to the administrative consequences of refusing a DUI field test, there could also be criminal penalties. A first-time offense is typically charged as a misdemeanor, but if you refuse a chemical test, the prosecutor may attempt to charge you with felony DUI.
If an officer has probable cause to believe that you are DUI, they can require you to submit to a chemical test of your blood, breath, or urine at the police station or a local hospital.
As you can imagine, the repercussions for refusing a DUI field test are quite serious.
AUTOMATIC DRIVERS LICENSE SUSPENSION
If you are pulled over by the police, and they have reason to believe that you are DUI, they may ask you to submit to a field sobriety test or a breathalyzer test. If you refuse to take either of these tests, you will be subject to automatic driver’s license suspension.
You are only given 7 days to personally request a local DMV hearing to challenge the automatic suspension. We strongly advise that a qualified DUI lawyer represent you at the DMV hearing. This hearing is essentially a “mini-trial” but with a lower threshold of evidence required to support suspension of your license.
PENALTIES FOR A DUI CONVICTION
If you are convicted of DUI, the penalties you face will depend on various factors, such as your BAC level, whether you have any prior convictions for DUI, and whether anyone was injured as a result of your drunk driving. However, even a first-time offense can result in a prison term, license suspension, probation, and steep fines. You may also be required to attend alcohol education classes or treatment programs.
A standard first offense carries potential jail time of up to six months, though this may be increased if there are injuries or property damage involved, if the driver had a passenger under 14 years old, or if the driver had a blood-alcohol level of .20% or higher. A first offense also comes with a fine of $1000 and a one-year license suspension.
In addition to the standard penalties, anyone convicted of a DUI in Colorado Springs will be required to install an IID on their vehicle for six months to a year following conviction. An IID is a machine that requires the driver to blow into it before starting their car; if the machine detects alcohol on the driver’s breath, it will prevent the car from starting.
A conviction for DUI stays on your record permanently, and that criminal record is not eligible for expungement or sealing. This means that it will be difficult for you to get a job, rent an apartment, or get insurance.
If this is your first offense and your BAC was below .15%, you may be able to get a restricted license after serving 30 days of your suspension. A restricted license allows you minimal driving privileges to drive to and from work, school, and DUI classes. You may also be able to get a restricted license if you agree to install an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) in your car.
An IID is a breathalyzer that you must blow into to do a breath test before your car starts. If your BAC is above .025%, the car will not start. You can apply for a restricted license at the DMV once you have completed the necessary paperwork and paid the required fees. You will also need to prove that you have enrolled in or completed a DUI program approved by the department of motor vehicles.
If this is your second offense or your BAC was .15% or higher, you will not be eligible for a temporary license. The penalties for a DUI are more severe if you have a prior conviction for a DUI or your BAC was .20% or higher. You may be facing mandatory jail time, a longer license suspension, and larger fines and fees.
You should always consult with an experienced attorney to discuss your specific situation and the best options for defense against your DUI case. With the help of a qualified attorney, you may be able to get your DUI case reduced or dismissed altogether.
IGNITION INTERLOCK DEVICE (IID)
A IID is a breathalyzer for your car. If your BAC is above a preset level, typically .02% or .03%, the device will prevent your car from starting. In some states, IID’s are required for all DUI offenders, even first-time offenders. In other states, IID’s are only required for repeat DUI offenders or for those with high BAC levels.
If you are convicted of a DUI in Colorado Springs, you will be required to install an IID in your vehicle as part of your sentence. The IID must be installed by a certified installer and must be maintained throughout the duration of your sentence. The IID must be calibrated regularly to ensure accuracy.
You will be required to blow into the IID before starting your car. If the IID detects alcohol on your breath, your car will not start. The cost of installing and maintaining an IID is approximately $100-$200 per month. In addition, you will be required to pay for the cost of calibration and monitoring.
LESSENING THE PENALTIES OF A DUI CONVICTION
Completing a DUI education program can help lessen the penalties. A DUI education program will teach you about the dangers of drinking and driving and how to avoid it in the future. You may also be able to get your driver’s license reinstated if you complete this program. The court may also sentence you to attend a victim impact panel or alcohol education class.
If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, please reach out for help. There are many resources available to you, and we can help you find the right path to recovery. Addiction is a disease, and it is important to remember that you are not alone in your battle. Reach out today, and we can help you get started on the road to recovery.
There are ways to lessen the impact of a conviction for a DUI. For example, you may be able to plea bargain with the prosecutor in your case. This means a defendant will plead guilty to a lesser charge in exchange for a reduced sentence.
If you are facing reckless driving charges, it is important to speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney who can help you navigate the legal system and provide you with all of your legal options so that you can make the best decision for your case.
When most people think of plea bargain, they think of deals made between the prosecutor and the defense lawyer. However, there are also plea bargains that can be made between the defendant and the judge. These deals are less common, but they can be beneficial for defendants who want to avoid going to trial or who want to have more control over their sentence.
Experienced Colorado Springs DUI attorneys will know how to negotiate with prosecutors and judges to get the best possible outcome for your case. For the best representation on your court dates, contact a qualified criminal defense attorney today to discuss your legal options and make sure that you are taking the best possible course of action for your case.
GET YOUR LICENSE REINSTATED
Once a license suspension/revocation period ends, you won’t receive your driver’s license back automatically. The first step in reinstating your driver’s license in Colorado Springs after a DUI is to complete an alcohol education program. This can involve taking an online course, attending a class at an approved facility, or both.
Other requirements include:
- Submit proof of insurance to the court and the department of motor vehicles. This includes form SR-22.
- Install an IID in your vehicle.
- You will also need to pay any applicable fines and fees associated with your DUI conviction.
In addition to completing an alcohol education program, you may be required to undergo additional screening and assessment processes. Depending on the results of these tests, you may have to complete additional treatment programs or participate in community service.
If all of the requirements for license reinstatement are met, you will then need to pay any applicable fees and retake your driving test before being issued a new license.
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When you are pulled over, you will be required to provide proof of insurance, and show your driver’s license to the officer.
If they suspect you have been drinking, the officer may ask you to take a field sobriety test. This is a series of simple balance and coordination tests. If you perform poorly on these, the officer will most likely arrest you for DUI.
The Express Consent law means that if you are pulled over, you must submit to a breath or blood test for alcohol levels. If you refuse to take the test, your license will automatically be suspended for one year, and this suspension cannot be challenged.
As a condition of obtaining a driver’s license in Colorado, you automatically consent to provide the state with a blood, saliva, or urine sample if you are arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI). In addition, it implies that you agree to enable the state to revoke your driver’s license unless you formally object within the first seven days following your arrest.
Drivers stopped in Colorado are given the choice of whether they would like to take a breath test or a blood test.
A driver in Colorado can be arrested for DUI if their blood alcohol content is at or above .08 percent, according to the Colorado Department of Transportation. Drivers in Colorado must submit to field sobriety tests when requested by a law enforcement officer before a breath or blood test, according to state law.
CRIMINAL CHARGES REQUIRE AGGRESSIVE DEFENSE
Engineered from the ground up to provide premium criminal defense against any alleged crime, our priority in all cases is fighting for the leverage necessary to get your charges dismissed.
Over two decades, the premier criminal defense law firm of Michael W. Moran, P.C. has represented tens of thousands of people facing criminal charges.
Our firm has consistently provided superb service fighting petty misdemeanor offenses, juvenile crimes, and traffic violations to high-level felonies like DUI, domestic violence, drug crimes, and murder charges to our clients.
We know the stress you are under when facing arrest or under investigation. Your freedom, the welfare of your family, and your future depend on the effectiveness, determination, and skill of the criminal attorney you choose.
Get the professional help you need now. Contact us for a free consultation immediately if the police question or arrest you or someone you love.
PROTECTION AT ALL COSTS
Selecting the law office of Michael W. Moran, P.C. to defend your case means your case will be represented by an extremely experienced and courtroom tested Colorado Springs DUI lawyer and trial attorney. An attorney who knows all the angles to avoid a DUI conviction within the local and state legal system.
Mike Moran is the experienced DUI lawyer you need for felony DUI charges in Colorado Springs. Our law firm uses only the best investigators, independent laboratories, and expert witnesses to punch holes in the prosecution’s DUI case against you.
And our dedicated staff of paralegals and legal assistants will keep you informed of essential hearing dates and case developments every step of the way.
FREE CONSULTATIONS WITH NO OBLIGATION
We offer free consultations so you have the opportunity to discuss your criminal charge with Mike Moran before you decide on the defense attorney that will represent you.
We encourage you to provide all relevant case documents at this meeting (including police reports) so attorney Moran can weigh the strength of the charges against you and clearly explain your best legal options.
Mike will answer any questions you may have, give you an in-depth understanding of the charges against you, the potential penalties if convicted, and discuss the proven defense strategies against your charges.
Call us at (719) 447-1923 or contact the office online to schedule your free consultation today. Or contact our Colorado Springs Family Law website for help with family law matters. For more granular information on
MICHAEL W. MORAN, P.C.
Our law firm is dedicated to providing superior results for clients in Colorado Springs Co, Pueblo, Manitou Springs, Castle Rock, Fountain, Peyton, Monument, Green Mountain Falls, Palmer Lake, and other areas throughout the state.
Attorney Mike Moran understands how hard the state of Colorado will work to convict you. As Colorado Spring’s most trusted drunk driving lawyer, DUI defense expert Mike Moran has successfully defended our clients in countless jury trial cases against felony DUI charges throughout the Colorado Springs CO 80903 area, and we welcome the chance to speak with you.