It’s hugely important to have a team that only focuses on that particular field. DUIs are probably the most complicated, or one of the most complicated, crimes that exist, especially when it comes to misdemeanors because you’ve got an entire series of events that happen, and there is a lot of science involved. Everybody’s different and reacts to alcohol differently. There are different signs and symptoms of impairment, and police officers are trained to process DUIs; they are not trained as medical doctors to determine, for example, whether somebody has some form of nystagmus or other medical condition that could really be influential in a case.
It’s not just about the traffic stop and whether a person’s blood was taken from them; there is a whole series of events that happen at the crime lab where the sample is put into evidence, taken out of evidence, as well as complex procedures for pipetting the blood and installing it into the gas chromatography device, and then the samples get analyzed by computer software, and there are many problems that can happen at any one of those different stages.
I’ve certainly seen other attorneys really watch the process and just simply miss some pretty key components in terms of errors that the police made that would have been hugely influential for their clients. It’s not because they are bad attorneys. It’s just because they don’t have experience. They are going to go back to their office and work on a family law case that has none of those issues, or they are going to file a bankruptcy case, which is nothing but numbers and receipts. Finding a criminal law attorney should require, in my opinion, a review of how many DUIs they’ve handled, how many trials have they done, is this something they do every day or are they just getting started with handling DUIs? That’s exactly what our firm does.
Additional Information About DUI Charges In Arizona
People will often ask about public defenders. It’s not cheap to hire a decent lawyer for a DUI charge. So we have done an analysis; and when you talk about all the penalties, the alcohol screenings, treatment classes and insurance rate increases, we think that it’s probably somewhere between $12,000 to $16,000 in terms of the cost of a DUI over the next three years. So it can be very expensive. We get people who are concerned with the cost of hiring a lawyer, and with this analysis we think that it’s certainly worth the investment obviously to retain an attorney because our fee is substantially lower than that. But people will also ask about a public defender. Can I just get a public defender? What are they going to do for me because I can’t afford a DUI or a private attorney.
We’ve got absolutely nothing bad to say about public defenders. A lot of them are good lawyers, they’ve handled a lot of cases, and they do care about the people that they are representing. The problem is that they are overwhelmed by the volume of cases that come through because they’ve got so many of them. They’ve got private contracts with the cities, and they get assigned handfuls of cases every week or every day, and it’s just too much, in our opinion, to give a client the necessary attention and scrutiny their case needs.
A public defender is better than nothing at all, of course; so if somebody is thinking about representing themselves because they can’t afford it, certainly seek counsel from a public defender, but we definitely do believe that it’s an important and a worthwhile investment to retain a team, who is literally dedicated to this type of field and to this type of case, in particular, on a daily basis.