Orange County, California has always been a hotspot for 4th of July weekend DUI arrests, but this year was especially successful for local law enforcement. Sources reported 78 arrests resulting from a suspicion of DUI in Orange County alone and 1,400 arrests throughout the state of California.
Last year, 28 arrests were reported in Orange County, California. The substantial increase in arrests between this year and last is most likely due in large part to this year’s long holiday weekend. Many of those arrested were identified during scheduled sobriety checkpoints spread throughout the county as well as the United States. In Rutherford Tennessee, a video was recorded during a DUI checkpoint that has since gone viral and exposed controversial tactics used by law enforcement.
Controversial 4th of July Checkpoint Caught on Tape
Libertarians within Rutherford County had become concerned about local DUI checkpoints, so they advised their members to record their interactions. The embedded video is member Chris Kalbaugh’s experience. The video shows an argument between Kalbaugh and the operating officer regarding Kalbaugh’s legal requirements as well as a controversial interaction involving a drug dog. The video has since gone viral and has sparked debate fueling growing concerns about the United States government and its utilization of power.
Are California DUI Checkpoints Legal?
Although sobriety checkpoints in the state of California are legal, operating officers have a list of rules that they must abide by while operating checkpoints. A failure to do so may result in an inability for law enforcement to use collected evidence against those charged with crimes resulting from sobriety checkpoints. The following are ways that Orange County DUI attorneys may defend those charged with DUI resulting from a sobriety checkpoint:
– Officers supervising the checkpoint were not in charge or present during operation.
– An adequate warning of the upcoming checkpoint was not provided.
– Drivers had no available route to avoid the sobriety checkpoint.
If the arresting officer is found to have violated any of the above, the defendant may be able to utilize proper legal counsel and have their case dismissed.
Possible DUI Penalties and Fines in California
In California, DUI can result in a misdemeanor or felony conviction. The vast majority of DUI offenses are charged as misdemeanors, but it may be charged as a felony depending on the circumstances of an individual’s case. If a drunk driver’s actions are determined to have resulted in the injury or death of another person, their charges are oftentimes filed as a felony offense. Those who have been arrested for multiple DUI offenses in the past 10 years are oftentimes charged with felonies as well.
Although it is impossible to properly evaluate what an offender’s consequences will be following a DUI arrest, minimum penalties for a first-time offender in California include fines and penalties of about $1,500, a lengthy alcohol education program, and three years of informal probation. In addition, a misdemeanor criminal conviction will be part of the defendant’s criminal record and the court will attempt to restrict the defendant’s driver’s license for three months.
Orange County Dui Defense
Those facing charges for DUI and DWI are encouraged to take advantage of a free DUI legal consultation from one of our experienced attorneys at the Law Offices of Randy Collins. Randy Collins, a firm partner, was the former district attorney for the County of Riverside and has prosecuted hundreds of DUI cases. He can provide you with information concerning your case as well as an in-depth case review.