Alexandria DUI Arrest Process
Anyone who has been arrested for DUI in Alexandria will first be transported to the Alexandria detention center for a blood alcohol test or a blood test. There they will be processed, and have an initial bail determination made by a magistrate. If you are being arrested for driving under the influence, it is important that you contact a qualified attorney as soon as possible. The sooner you retain the services of an experienced attorney, the sooner they can begin to build your case in order to achieve the best possible outcome.
DUI Booking Process
When an individual arrives at the police department or at the detention center, after being arrested for a DUI, there is a waiting period before the BAC test is administered. This is usually 20 minutes so as to allow any alcohol that is in a person’s mouth to dissipate, entering the bloodstream, thereby producing a more accurate reading of the individual’s blood alcohol content.
Once that test is complete, the officer will bring the individual before the magistrate judge, who will either be there in person or via video transmission. The officer will then present evidence to the magistrate judge to support a warrant being issued for the DUI.
Typically, the magistrate will issue the warrant for DUI and it will be served to the person being charged. The magistrate will then make a determination about whether the individual is to be released on bail—that is, whether they are to be free during the time that their court hearing is pending.
In most DUI cases, a person usually has two options:
- They will be released on their own recognizance, which means they do not have to post any money to go free, or
- They may have to post a bond in order to be released. If this is the case, they can either post the bail themselves or utilize a surrogate who posts the bail for them. This surrogate is called the bail bondsman.
An individual can have an attorney present for an Alexandria bond hearing. In some DUI cases, particularly felony DUIs, the magistrate or judge will be inclined to deny bond. In those cases, it can be especially valuable to retain the services of an attorney expressly for the purpose of being admitted to bail or having a reasonable bond be set.
Refusing a Blood Test
Once at law enforcement headquarters, an individual can refuse to take the blood alcohol test. However, there is a risk involved in that decision. If a court later finds that there was, in fact, probable cause for an individual’s arrest, then the defendant can be convicted of refusal. This will carry with it a one-year loss of license without the possibility of being able to get a restricted operator’s license. It is also the case that someone can be convicted of refusal alone, even if there is not enough evidence to convict them of a DUI. This is often because a refusal has a lower standard of proof and is, therefore, easier to make a convincing case for in court.
How An Attorney Can Help
If you have been arrested for a DUI, it is essential that you contact an attorney as soon as possible. The law enforcement officer will not allow you to contact an attorney or anyone else during the stop. However, once someone has been released from jail or the custody of the police, they can and should contact an attorney as soon as it is convenient. If you find yourself in this position, there are proactive steps that an attorney can help you take which will strengthen your case in court. An experienced attorney will clarify these for you, as well as guide and advise you through the often confusing process, working throughout to achieve the best results possible.