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Tag Archives: marijuana

DUIs are Forever . . . in Virginia

Among the Top 10 Questions that I am asked:  “How long will a DUI be on my record?” Virginia makes the answer easy:  DUIs are forever. Virginia has no provision to erase or expunge any misdemeanor or felony conviction no matter how much time has passed.  It is true that a first or second DUI (both misdemeanors) will only “count” against you as a previous DUI for 10 years, but as of July of 2013 felony DUIs now count against ... Read More »

Loss of Concealed Carry for DWIs in Virginia

While the concealed carry law was NOT changed in Virginia this year, the very long concealed carry section was reorganized into a number of smaller sections.  The result:  courts are increasingly requiring defendants convicted of DWI to relinquish their concealed carry permits. And this is for people that were NOT carrying while DWI.  The penalty for concealed carry while intoxicated is another Class 1 misdemeanor with up to a $2500 fine and a year in jail.  Your weapon will also usually be confiscated ... Read More »

Paying Police to Arrest You! A growing trend in Virginia.

You decide to go it alone – skip hiring a DWI defense attorney – and you get convicted of a DWI.  You pay a $250 fine that becomes almost $500 with court costs.  You pay a $300 entry fee for the Alcohol Safety and Action Program and even more for treatment and classes.  You pay $600 to $800 for ignition interlock so that you can begin to drive again.  You pay a DMV reinstatement fee.                 You file for FR44 ... Read More »

Using Medical Marihuana While On Bond for DUI

If you are charged with virtually any alcohol and drug related driving offenses you will be entitled to bond.[i] This includes the most serious intoxicated driving offenses such as those involving death or serious injury. This does not mean that the Michigan court cannot keep close tabs on you while you are on bond.  The court can impose many different conditions on your bond, such as periodically reporting to a monitoring agency, not using alcohol, participate in therapy or AA, ... Read More »

McNeely and Forced Blood Draws in Virginia

Under the implied consent law in Virginia, you are required to give a breath or blood test if an officer arrests you for driving under the influence. If you’ve been in an accident and end up at a hospital, the officer will usually ask for a blood test. You have the power to refuse, but will then face a separate refusal charge with additional penalties. The officer then has a choice to obtain a warrant for a forced blood test, ... Read More »

Can the Alco-Sensor be Used Against You in Virginia?

If you are pulled over and the officer suspects drunk driving, you will be offered a preliminary breath test – sometimes called an Alco-Sensor.  I have watched many videos where officers tell my clients that the results of the Alco-Sensor “cannot be used in court” and “cannot hurt them.”  But is this true? It is true that the preliminary breath test cannot be used against them to prove DWI or “baby DWI” (under 21 with a blood alcohol level of ... Read More »

State laboratory to suspend blood-alcohol and blood-drug testing

In a press release issued today, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has announced that it will suspend itself from blood-alcohol and blood-drug testing due to systemic failures and staff incompetence. DENVER – Effective July 3, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment will suspend blood-alcohol and blood-drug testing performed at its toxicology laboratory until further notice. During this suspension, the state toxicology lab will complete the work on samples currently in the testing process. Unprocessed specimens will ... Read More »

Try getting past this one!

Marijuana, cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamines are just a few of the many different controlled substances that Swedish researchers have found can be detected by a commercially available breathing test device.  A control group of 47 individuals, who had taken a variety of drugs less than 24 hours prior, were tested to check the accuracy of the device. The test successfully detected drugs in 87% of the people. The device would allow police officers to test suspected drug users and DUI ... Read More »

Virginia’s New Policy for Restoration of Rights after Felony DUI

You can’t count on a lot in life – but one thing you can – DWI penalties always get tougher in Virginia.  So, it’s noteworthy when Virginia decides to give people convicted of a DUI a break.  This break comes from the Governor instead of from the General Assembly. If you were convicted of a felony DUI, it will be easier to get your rights restored to vote, hold office, and serve on a jury.  Additionally, this initial restoration is ... Read More »

New Felony DWI law in Virginia: from 0 to 365 days on July 1, 2013!

Third and subsequent DWIs became felonies in Virginia in 1999.  Since that time, Virginia has had a 10 year lookback period for using previous DUIs to enhance punishments.  Currently, Virginia Code § 18.2-270 has the following DWIs and minimum mandatory punishments: 3 DWIs committed within a 10 year period   90 days 3 DWIs committed within a 5 year period     6 months 4 (or more) DWIs within a 10 year period      1 year These portions of the law remain the same. ... Read More »