Most Los Angeles DUI stories that make it into the mainstream press (and get a lot of “buzz” in the blogosphere) involve celebrities, politicians, ironic DUI scenarios, and heartbreakingly dramatic/tragic news.
Unfortunately, “low profile” victims often do not get the attention they probably deserve.
However, occasionally, an accident is so horrific that it captures national attention, even if the people involved do not have their own reality TV shows. To wit: last Sunday, a homeless man died after a crash near the Fifth Street off-ramp of a San Francisco freeway. Authorities believe that a DUI driver hit a tent where the man had been sleeping near the freeway.
According to the California Highway Patrol, 27-year-old Jaime Juarez allegedly smashed into the homeless man and several other people in his Toyota Forerunner after mis-navigating the West Fifth Street exit of 1-80 and then smashing through the guardrail into the tent. The victim died on the scene. Police arrested Juarez for DUI, took him to the San Francisco County Jail and booked him on charges of vehicular manslaughter and felony DUI. Both counts could land him many years behind bars.
California law distinguishes between two main categories of DUI – standard misdemeanor, non-injury DUIs, defined by California Vehicle Code Sections 23152(a) and (b) and injury DUIs, defined by California Vehicle Code Sections 23153(a) and (b).
Prosecutors can also try to enhance your sentence under the following circumstances:
• You had been driving with an extremely high blood alcohol concentration (e.g. 0.20%);
• You severely injured or killed someone as opposed to “merely” hurting someone by breaking his arm, for instance;
• You behaved with gross negligence as opposed to just standard carelessness;
• You had been arrested and convicted for a DUI offense in the past. If you received a “Watson advisement” after your last DUI, and then you drove DUI again and killed someone, you could be charged with an offense known as a DUI murder;
• You hit someone and left the scene (hit and run);
• You evaded police or struggled or attacked police during or after the arrest;
No matter what happened in your case, you deserve a fair and thorough defense. The team here at the Kraut Law Group can help you understand your charges and construct an appropriate strategy. Speak with a Los Angeles DUI defense attorney right now to protect your rights.
Did you get arrested for a DUI in Los Angeles? If so, contact Los Angeles criminal defense attorney Michael Kraut for assistance by phone at (323) 464-6453 or online. We’re located at 6255 Sunset Boulevard, Suite 1520, Los Angeles, California 90028.