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There are a number of law enforcement agencies that are responsible for upholding DUI laws in the Greater Los Angeles area. The LAPD, which is the third largest municipal police department in the U.S., has nearly 10,000 officers sworn to protect an served. On any given night or weekend, LAPD officers make hundreds of DUI arrests. If you get arrested by an LAPD officer for DUI, it is imperative that seek out a Los Angeles DUI attorney as soon as possible. With DUI arrests, time is of the essence.
While LAPD officers generally don’t pull over vehicles on the freeway (This is usually done by the California Highway Patrol), they can stop vehicles if the suspect that the driver may be under the influence. If an LAPD officer sees a vehicle swerving or other erratic behavior, that is enough probable cause to pull you over. Often times, LAPD officers pull over vehicles that have committed traffic violations such as running red lights or speeding. If there is the presence of alcohol, or if they have some other reason to believe you have been drinking, a field sobriety test can be issued. Officers are especially vigilant during after hours when bars and clubs are closing. This is usually the prime time to catch DUI offenders.
One of the best ways to catch individuals driving while intoxicated is through DUI check points. Vehicles are stopped at checkpoints, and drivers are checked for signs of intoxication such as slurred speech, red eyes, the smell of alcohol and other factors. DUI checkpoints are considered constitutional by the California Supreme Court as long certain predetermined rules are followed to the letter.
LAPD patrol vehicles are now equipped with dash cam videos to capture DUI stops. This technology captures the stop from beginning to end in case evidence is needed in court. The use of body cameras, which captures interaction between the officer and driver, is also an effective tool to document footage of the stop and subsequent arrest. Although some people view body cams as controversial, it can be a crucial piece of evidence when and if questions arise regarding the DUI stop.
The Los Angeles City Attorney prosecutes the vast majority of the DUI cases. Generally only Metropolitan, Van Nuys, San Fernando and Long Beach courthouses handle LAPD DUI cases. Prosecutors from the Los Angeles City Attorney’s office handle are in charge of all these cases. However, if the charge turns out to be a felony DUI case, it is transferred to the Los Angeles County Superior Court.
If you have been charged with a DUI, it is important that you seek out the advice of a Los Angeles DUI Lawyer immediately. DUI cases can be very complex, and only experienced Los Angeles DUI Attorneys can provide you with the expert representation you need. Michael Kraut of the Kraut Law Group is a highly-trained former prosecutor with over 15 years of experience. He is well-respected, tenacious and qualified to provide you with the defense you need.
All DUI cases are different. There are many ways that DUIs can be challenged in court.