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Bolivia Criminal Defense Blog

Ending a holiday party arrested for drunk driving stops the fun

Throughout this holiday season, adults must remember that they are free to make choices, but they aren't free to choose their consequences for those. One area that is very important to keep this in mind is when you head out to parties for Christmas and New Year's Day. If you plan to consume alcohol, take the time to find a reliable way home. Even though this might not be too fun, it can help to save you time in jail and criminal court costs, as well as other expenses.

We know that you might just want to go out with your friends and have a few drinks to celebrate the end of the year and the start of a new one. Just remember that nothing is going to ruin your fun more than seeing the flashing lights of a police vehicle in your rearview when you know you've had alcohol.

Bail overhaul might be coming to North Carolina

Defendants who are awaiting their trial will sometimes have to do so in jail. This is partially due to the bail system. Because of this system, these defendants are ordered to pay a certain amount of money to be released pending the outcome of the case.

In theory, this is done to ensure the person will show up to future court dates. In reality, it can prevent poor defendants from ever being released. This might soon be changing in North Carolina for some low-level felonies and misdemeanors. The North Carolina Courts Commission is looking into an overhaul of the bail system.

Can my DUI charges be dismissed?

Being pulled over and charged with a driving while intoxicated (DUI) offense is a serious, scary and life-altering event. DUI charges carry significant criminal and administrative penalties. You may face jail time, lose your driving privileges, be forced to pay costly fines and suffer damage to your personal and professional reputation and relationships.

If you are facing DUI charges, you may be confused and have a number of questions, including whether your charges could be reduced or dismissed. There are defense strategies an attorney can use to raise doubts about your arrest and challenge drunk driving charges. Depending on your situation, the charges against you could be reduced or dropped altogether.

Field sobriety tests might be disputed in a drunk driving case

One of the primary components of a drunk driving stop is the field sobriety test. The officer who conducts this test will either perform a standardized field sobriety test or a nonstandardized test. The difference between these two is that the standardized test has been accepted by the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA).

There are specific components to the standardized field sobriety tests that are done to determine if a driver is under the influence of any drug or alcohol. These include the horizontal gaze nystagmus test, the walk-and-turn and the one-leg stand. The officers who conduct these tests are specially trained to ensure that they are reading the results properly.

Some defenses focus on minimizing the penalties you'll face

We recently discussed how many factors can impact the sentence you face when you are convicted of a crime. One of the ways that you might be able to minimize the penalties you have to live with is through your defense. There are times when we know that a conviction is likely. Instead of focusing only on showing that you aren't guilty in these cases, we can focus on trying to minimize your sentence.

When we work with you on your defense, we will look at all the factors in the case that might impact the outcome. Once we do this and discuss them with you, we can work on finding the options for your defense that might be possible. You can then decide on a strategy that you want to use based on how each one might impact you.

Many factors are considered during criminal sentencing

Once a person goes through a criminal justice trial, they will learn the outcome of the case. If this is guilty, the person will move on to the sentencing phase. This isn't always easy to gauge. There are many factors that come into the picture when it is time to hand down the penalties after a conviction.

A person's criminal history is a primary consideration when they are being sentenced. This can help the judge to determine whether the current charge needs to be handled under subsequent conviction laws. In some cases, the penalties for convictions after a primary one are much harsher.

Moving violations can impact your income and other areas of life

Some individuals don't understand how they might be impacted by traffic tickets. Some tickets are worse than others when it comes to the impact they have. When you have a ticket, one of the primary concerns that come with these tickets is the monetary outcome of the incident.

There is a chance that any traffic ticket may cause your vehicle insurance to rise. This means that you will be paying more over time for the same coverage you had before the ticket. On top of the increase in insurance costs, you will have to pay the fine. We know that there are a lot of things going through your mind when you are dealing with moving violations.

Impaired driving doesn't always involve alcohol

Many people falsely believe that alcohol is the only substance that can lead to an impaired driving charge. It is possible for a driver to face this type of charge if they are impaired by other substances, including street drugs, over-the-counter medicines and prescription medications.

The key factor in all of these cases it that the substance reduced your ability to drive safely. You have to be able to pay attention to the road and react appropriately to hazards and obstacles. When anything slows down your reaction time or takes away your ability to concentrate, you might face criminal charges.

How much will a speeding ticket cost me in North Carolina?

A fun family outing can turn to a headache quickly if you are pulled over for a speeding ticket. It is an added expense you probably did not budget for when planning your road trip.

For those who are unfamiliar with North Carolina traffic laws, the first question that likely comes to mind is “How much is this going to cost me?” The answer is not a simple price tag – speeding tickets can lead to long-term consequences.

Plea deals have specific points to consider for both sides

Many criminal cases are resolved with a plea bargain. This is a tool that enables the defendant and the prosecutor to work together to get the case resolved. In most cases, the prosecutor will only work directly with the defense attorney.

There are specific points that both sides of the criminal case must consider if one of these deals is going to work. One of the most important is to realize that you are going to have to plead either guilty or no contest to the charges. This is made in open court, so it will be on your record.

An Award-Winning LawyerFirm founder Dustin R.T. Sullivan has been recognized as one of the leading attorneys in North Carolina. His accolades include:

  • Super Lawyer2017 Rising Star in DWI Defense Super Lawyers of North Carolina
  • Superior DUI Attorney 20162016 Superior DUI Attorney ranking for fourth consecutive year by the National Advocacy for DUI Defense
  • Super Lawyer | Dustin R.T. Sullivan | Selected In 20172016 Public Service Award for Legal Aid of North Carolina
  • 10 Best 2017 | Attorney | Client Satisfaction 2015 10 Best Client Satisfaction Award by the American Institute of DUI/DWI Attorneys
  • NAFLA2015 Top 10 Ranking by the National Academy of Family Law Attorneys
    • Top Rated On AVVO
    • Review Dustin R.T. Sullivan | Avvo
    • Top Contributor Award 2014 | Dustin R.T. Sullivan | Avvo
    • Avvo Rating 10.0 | Dustin R.T. Sullivan | Top Attorney
    • 2014 Top 100 Attorneys in North Carolina by the National Advocacy for DUI Defense
    • nafdd
  • StarNews Media | Finalist for Best Attorney2013 Finalist for Best Attorney in Cape Fear region by Wilmington Star News
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