From an emotional standpoint, a case where someone is accused driving under the influence and killing another person is one of the toughest. With the victim, you usually have someone who did not deserve to die. They are often young, in the prime of their lives. They are usually also close to the driver. The victim is often a spouse, girlfriend, boyfriend, or sibling of the accused. Unfortunately, that person is not available to express forgiveness to the driver.
As for the driver, you often have a person who has never been in trouble in his life. He may be college educated, have a great job, and a loving family. But for this horrible incident he would have continued to be an upstanding citizen.
Recently, a San Jose woman pled guilty to gross vehicular manslaughter after hitting and killing a 79 year old grandmother. She is waiting to be sentenced by a Santa Clara County judge. Her maximum possible sentence is 12 years in the state prison. In fact, the judge is precluded from granting this woman probation unless he finds “unusual circumstances” where the interests of justice require it. According to statements, the family of the victim has forgiven the defendant, and believes that the victim would forgive her as well. Unfortunately, California DUI sentencing law provides somewhat less opportunity for the Court to forgive her.
As a former prosecutor, I can tell you that, regardless of the outcome, nobody wins in these cases. Regardless of what side you are on there is nothing but tragedy in these cases. An innocent victim loses her life, and a contrite survivor is cast into the hell of the California prison system.
You can’t always rely on the results from a breath test to prove DUI. There are too many factors that affect the readings given from breathalyzers in Virginia. Prosecutors often use BAC readings as their main argument against a DUI defendant, but an experienced Virginia DUI attorney knows when these tests are inaccurate.
Breath testing equipment is frequently used when a police officer pulls over a suspect for DUI. These devices are used to measure the blood alcohol content (BAC) of the driver, by utilizing a ratio to convert the alcohol in the breath to alcohol in the blood. The first potential problem with breathalyzers is that it is automatically assumes that this ratio will be the same from person to person.
If you have been arrested for DUI in Virginia and your BAC was above the legal limit, you need to have an expert review your case. The various factors that can skew the results of breath tests are endless. Radio frequency from a police officer’s radio or a nearby airport can affect your breath test results. Mouth alcohol can throw off the reading, especially if you wear dentures. Other chemicals are often mistaken for ethanol, which is found in alcoholic drinks. Even certain medical conditions, such as diabetes can give false results from breathalyzers.
Don’t let your Virginia DUI conviction be based on the results from a breath test, without first looking into other possible causes that could have altered your BAC reading. Talk with an experienced DUI attorney today by calling 888-DUI-ANSWER.
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