Whether they stem from social media, television, or stories from your friends and family, there are a lot of misconceptions surrounding driving under the influence. DUI, as it is referred to in Virgina, is an exceptionally dangerous crime and there are numerous state rules and regulations that are meant to punish offenders and protect potential victims.
Unfortunately, these misunderstandings can cause serious legal problems. So, to stay as informed as possible, here are some common DUI myths and misconceptions to keep an eye out for.
Myth: I can only be arrested for DUI if I was caught in the act.
This is not true simply because you don't have to be currently drinking to have alcohol in your system. If the police officer spots you acting intoxicated and/or can prove you were recently behind the wheel, you can get charged.
Myth: You have to agree to take field sobriety tests.
These are different from the breathalyzer test. Field sobriety tests are tests a police officer administers so they can determine your level of sobriety. They can include reciting the alphabet, walking in a straight line, touching your nose, and standing on one leg. While these are not mandatory, they are important evidence in case your arrest goes to trial, so we recommend speaking to experienced DUI lawyers for recommendations if you choose to forgo the tests.
Myth: The punishment for a DUI is only a fine and possible jail time.
The punishment for your conviction relies on a number of different factors such as your blood alcohol content and your criminal history. But do know that a fine and jail time are not the only punishments. Back in 2012, Virgina enacted a law requiring ignition interlocks for all convicted drunk drivers and the interlock installations have increased to over 8,500 in just one year, so a device like this can be expected.
Myth: If I'm careful, I won't get caught.
This may be perhaps one of the most dangerous myths, and it is just not true. Driving under the influence is a crime and must be treated as such. No one is exempt from the law, no matter how careful you drive.
If you have been convicted of a DUI, our specialized attorneys will be able to protect your rights in a court of law. Having a lawyer to lead you through the court system is beneficial, so do not take any risks; call our office today.