How DUI Cases Are Handled in Virginia Beach

Below are frequently asked questions on how DUI cases are handled in Virginia Beach as told by a Virginia Beach DUI lawyer. To learn more about DUI charges or to discuss your case, call today and schedule a consulation.

DUI cases are investigated by the police department. Once the police have arrested someone for a DUI, the case is then handled by the commonwealth attorney’s office.

DUI cases are very serious in Virginia Beach and they are processed to the fullest extent of the law. Virginia Beach is actually known for its high conviction rate of DUIs and they take a very aggressive stance on them with a zero tolerance policy, meaning that they don’t accept plea deals on any DUIs

Are DUIs A Main Area of Focus for Virginia Beach Officers?

DUIs are a priority for officers. In fact, prosecutors and police officers are both intent on cracking down on defendant’s charged with this offense. Police officers are trained to recognize the signs of an impaired driver and there are DUI checkpoints conducted randomly throughout the whole city.

Prosecutors definitely take DUIs very seriously, but at the same time they’re reasonable and fair for someone with a first offense.

DUI Sobriety Checkpoints in Virginia Beach

Virginia Beach is known for its multiple sobriety checkpoints on I-264 towards Oceanfront, General Booth Blvd., Independence Blvd., and Shore Drive. Many of these areas have rows of bars and restaurants so patrons leaving these establishments are really easy targets.

Sobriety checkpoints are extremely common in Virginia Beach. You can expect to be stopped around any major holiday and commonly on weekend evenings.

    I-64 or I-264 towards the Oceanfront, General Booth Blvd., Independence Blvd., and Shore Drive.

What Happens After a DUI Arrest in Virginia Beach?

The first step is the arrest which happens after the defendant is pulled over and the officer determines that they have enough evidence to arrest them for a DUI.

Next is the arraignment where the charges will be read to the defendant and he will be officially charged with the DUI. This is where the defendant makes arrangements to either to hire his own attorney or see if he can qualify for a public defender.

Then, once they have their Virginia Beach DUI attorney, the attorney takes them through the discovery process in which all the evidence is gathered and then weighed to figure out what the defendant’s options are going to be. Finally, the process concludes either with a trial or the attorney can fight the charges or with working at a plea agreement with the prosecutor.

Where Are DUI Cases Typically Heard in Virginia Beach?

They are heard in the Virginia Beach General District Court.

Unless an appeal is noted, all DUI cases are heard in general district court, which is located in the same courthouse as Circuit Court.

First Steps After a DUI Arrest

It is strongly recommended that anyone facing a DUI charge in Virginia Beach immediately contacts an attorney. It’s a very serious charge with massive consequences and it’s not something that is instinctively easy to argue in court. While people may sometimes have success defending themselves in a reckless driving case, that is not the case for DUI charges. Unlike reckless driving cases, which are more cut and dry, driving under the influence defense requires more complicated knowledge about field sobriety tests, calibration tests, and breathalyzer tests. A Virginia Beach DUI lawyer will know information about these tests and can provide additional support during your case.

It’s really important to have somebody who knows all the nuances of the DUI and can walk you through it. It’s not something that you could go into court unprepared for and there’s definitely a lot of things that someone can do in advance to mitigate repercussions. For example, they can participate in alcohol treatment or counseling programs beforehand and documenting their attendance to present in court, which may garner more favorable results.