Do You Need a DUI with Injury Lawyer? We Can Help
DUI with Injury Lawyer San Diego
In San Diego, driving under the influence (DUI) may be charged as a felony offense when a person drives under the influence of alcohol or drugs and commits another illegal act, and as a result, causes injury or death to another person. Even as a first offense, DUI with injury can result in devastating consequences for you and your loved ones, possibly including costly fines, a lengthy prison sentence and a strike on your criminal record. If you have been arrested for or charged with DUI causing injury in San Diego or the surrounding areas, your first course of action should be to consult an experienced DUI defense attorney. Contact our trial-tested defense lawyers at Sevens Legal, APC today to discuss your legal options.
Knowledgeable DUI With Injury Lawyer
San Diego DUI With Injury
California Vehicle Code § 23153 VC
Vehicle Code § 23153 VC is the California law governing DUI with injury cases, and the law states the following:
- It is unlawful for a person, while under the influence of any alcoholic beverage, to drive a vehicle and concurrently do any act forbidden by law, or neglect any duty imposed by law in driving the vehicle, which act or neglect proximately causes bodily injury to any person other than the driver.
- It is unlawful for a person, while having 0.08 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood to drive a vehicle and concurrently do any act forbidden by law, or neglect any duty imposed by law in driving the vehicle, which act or neglect proximately causes bodily injury to any person other than the driver.
According to this law, if you drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs and commit another illegal act or neglect to perform a legal duty, thereby causing another person other than yourself to be injured or killed, you can face charges of DUI with injury under VC § 23153, regardless of how minor the other person’s injury may be. In this case, negligence means you failed to use reasonable care to prevent a reasonably foreseeable harm to another person. Some examples of illegal acts that may warrant DUI with injury charges include:
- Driving recklessly
- Making an illegal turn
- Failing to stop at a red light
- Failing to stop at a stop sign
- Failing to yield
DUI Causing Death
When a San Diego drunk driving offense causes the death of another person, the case becomes far more serious and immediate intervention by a skilled and aggressive DUI defense attorney is required. Under these circumstances, there are three possible charges that can result:
- Vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated (a misdemeanor or felony offense)
- Gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated (a felony offense)
- DUI murder (a felony offense)
The crime of vehicular manslaughter is similar to DUI with injury in that it requires that the driver broke some other law in addition to DUI and that the driver’s negligence or illegal act resulted in the other person’s death, in order for these charges to be brought.
San Diego DUI With Injury Penalties
- Two to four years in state prison (plus one additional consecutive year for each injured person, up to three years, and an additional three to six years if anyone, other than yourself, suffered great bodily injury),
- Up to $5,000 in fines, plus additional fees and costs,
- Three to five years of formal probation,
- Driver’s license revocation for five years,
- DUI school for 18 or 30 months,
- Installation of an Ignition Interlock Device (IID),
- A strike on your criminal record,
- Habitual Traffic Offender status for three years,
- Restitution payments to injured victims, and
- Insurance ramifications.
DUI Aggravating Factors
In some cases, the San Diego court where your case is heard may impose a more serious punishment if there are additional aggravating factors involved in your DUI case. For instance, if you had an exceptionally high BAC, if you had a child in the car, if you were speeding, or if you refused a chemical test, you could face increased criminal penalties under California law.
Three Strikes Sentencing Law
There is a habitual offender law in place in California known as the “Three Strikes” sentencing law, which is designed to significantly increase the criminal penalties for offenders convicted of multiple serious or violent felony crimes, known as “strike priors.” Under this law, if you have one strike prior on your record, and you are convicted of felony DUI with injury, you could face twice the sentence otherwise required by the law. If you have two or more strike priors on your record, and you are convicted of felony DUI with injury, you could face an automatic prison sentence of 25 years to life.
DUI Expungement in San Diego
Expungement is only available to offenders convicted of DUI crimes who have successfully completed probation and did not serve any time in prison for the offense, or did serve time in prison but would have served it in county jail had the offense taken place after the implementation of Proposition 47. If you are convicted of felony DUI with injury and your punishment requires time spent in state prison, you will not be eligible for expungement. However, with a knowledgeable DUI defense attorney on your side, you may be able to obtain a governor’s pardon or a certification of rehabilitation. Because DUI with injury is a wobbler offense, if you are convicted of felony DUI with injury and you did not serve time in prison for the crime, you can petition the court to have the felony charge reduced to a misdemeanor, at which point the conviction can be expunged.
San Diego DUI With Injury Defense
- You drove a vehicle,
- You were under the influence or had a BAC of 0.08% when you drove,
- While driving, you acted negligently or broke another law in addition to DUI, and
- Your negligence or illegal act caused injury to another person.
If your attorney can present a strong defense that calls into question the validity of the prosecution’s evidence against you, he or she may be able to get you acquitted.
Best Defense Strategies for DUI With Injury
The most important thing to remember is that a DUI arrest is not the same thing as a conviction, and just because you are facing DUI with injury charges in San Diego does not automatically mean you will be convicted of the crime. There are a number of possible defenses your attorney can present in court to establish reasonable doubt and help you beat the charges, including the following:
- You were not intoxicated at the time of the accident
- The accident was an unfortunate mistake
- The accident was not the result of driver error
- The accident was caused by another driver or outside force
- The accident did not cause the person’s injuries
How Our DUI With Injury Lawyers Can Help
Contacting Our San Diego DUI With Injury Lawyers
Our Clients Say
“Samantha Green was great handling my case. She got me from a misdemeanor to a fraction. Im happy with that. She also kept me updated on my case and i never had to call her for an update. I would definitely use her again and recommend her to people.” – Amanda K.
At Sevens Legal, APC we pride ourselves on our commitment to prompt responses to our potential clients and clients. Your case is very important to us and we will respond to you as soon as possible.
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