Description: Client was charged with DUI in District Court with blood alcohol level above .15. Investigation revealed client was not properly advised of his rights and warnings by law enforcement. Client was an English speaker but English was his second language. He was not asked if English was his first language and was not offered an interpreter. This led to confusion over whether to consent to a breath test and whether to answer law enforcement questions.
Outcome: DUI charges were reduced to Negligent Driving in the first degree. Client served no jail time and faced no license suspension.
Message: According to Washington State law, when a person is arrested for DUI they must be properly advised of their rights and the Implied Consent Warnings “in words easily understood”. Individuals should be given the opportunity to receive their rights and warnings with the use of an interpreter to ensure complete understanding of the information being communicated.
As always, Dellino Law Group urges you to drink responsibly. Designate a sober driver or use alternate modes of getting home if you have been drinking. Understand how to avoid getting yourself into the position where you could be pulled over for a DUI and be prepared in the event that you are pulled over and have been drinking. Be aware that a DUI can have serious consequences on your future. You could be looking at driver’s license suspension, large fines, jail time, and the long term impacts of a criminal record.
Please see our recent blog post about how to avoid getting a DUI in Washington State. Please also see our post about fines and penalties for Washington State DUI convictions. We want you to be well prepared and sufficiently informed.
In the event you are being faced with DUI charges, don’t face them alone. Contact an experienced DUI attorney to help you formulate the best legal strategy for you. These are significant charges and you should not try to tackle them without experienced counsel to advise you appropriately and advocate on your behalf.