Case History: California Drivers Advocates was engaged to assist a client whose driver license was in jeopardy of being suspended following a DUI arrest in La Quinta, CA. The 48 year old client was accused of running a stop sign. The arresting Riverside County Sheriff’s Deputy accused the driver of failing all Field Sobriety Tests, blowing a .15% on a PAS device. Subsequently, our client then submitted to an evidentiary breath test with a result of .15%. Our client drives works as a traveling veterinary assistant and driving is a critical element of continued employment.
The DMV’s Position: The California DMV’s position was crystal clear. Under the “Official Duty Presumption,” the DMV Hearing Officer presumed the arresting deputy had a lawful reason to stop our client. The hearing officer also presumed that the deputy conducted a thorough and fair investigation, that he documented everything accurately and honestly, and that the blood/alcohol concentration was accurate.
When we walked in the door, the DMV presumed our client’s guilt and was challenging us to prove them wrong. Essentially our client was “guilty” until proven innocent.
Our Defense: Good DMV defense requires that we look beyond the police report. Everything the arresting deputy wrote in his reports indicated that he conducted a thorough DUI investigation and that he documented everything accurately. We issued a number of subpoenas for additional items of evidence that were not included as part of the DMV Discovery. We discovered that the arresting deputy had video recorded the entire event with the use of a “body camera.” We issued a subpoena for the production of that evidence and received it shortly thereafter. A careful review of the body camera revealed a critical error made by the deputy that rendered the breath samples inadmissible at the DMV hearing.
We prepared an effective defense plan that included the introduction of our evidence and the cross-examination of the arresting deputy. In the end, the DMV Hearing Officer had no choice but to exclude the breath test results.
The Outcome: At the conclusion of the APS Hearing, the hearing officer took the matter under submission. Three weeks later, we received official notice that the hearing officer had “Set Aside” the suspension and our client’s driving privilege was fully reinstated. Our client suffered no APS suspension, was not required to attend a DUI school, and was not required to purchase an SR-22 Form. This is similar to being found “Not Guilty” by a jury. As a result our client is safely driving and committed to remaining a sober driver.
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The DMV Defense Experts at California Drivers Advocates have been fighting and winning DMV Administrative Per Se hearings for years. We excel at every type of administrative hearing handled by the DMV and have a history of winning. Call us and let us get you back on the road.