DUI Charges in Norfolk, Virginia

DUIs are taken very seriously in this area and it can be really hard to overcome without the assistance of a Norfolk DUI attorney. They are a main focus for officers in the area, who routinely patrol roadways like I-264, even occasionally using DUI checkpoints.

In Virginia, a driving under the influence charge can arise out of several factors, including the presence of drugs in your system, or blowing a 0.08 BAC. Moreover, you can be charged with DUI even without blowing a high BAC, based on an officer’s observations and field sobriety test results. DUI are criminal misdemeanors punishable by jail time, fines, and license suspension. Furthermore, the penalties increase depending on the BAC, and include mandatory minimums.

What Happens After a DUI Arrest in Norfolk?

After you are arrested, your court date is set. DUI cases are heard at the Norfolk General District Court, unless it is a felony DUI, in which case it would be heard in Circuit Court. After that, you’re given a chance to get all the discovery which allows you or your attorney to look over the information recorded by the officer at the scene to determine if everything was done according to procedure.

Additionally, this gives you the chance to review any video or recordings done by the officer at the time of the arrest. This is also a good chance to collect evidence of your own, which can include witnesses who were with you before or during the traffic stop.

After discovery, the trial comes and the officer and sometimes the defendant are asked questions about what happened.

At that time, any argument as to inadmissibility of evidence is done. Based on the evidence and information, the judge makes a determination of guilt and imposes a sentence if found guilty.

What Should You Expect from a First-Time DUI in Norfolk?

It’s very common to get fines, a suspended license, completion of a VASAP course, and then jail time and a mandatory ignition interlock. The jail time depends on the BAC. If the BAC is .15 or higher, then there’s a mandatory five days in jail.

How Are Continuances Handled in Norfolk DUI Cases?

In Norfolk, a continuance can only be granted by the judge and it must be granted in person. Each side is typically only allowed one continuance. Depending on the circumstances surrounding the request, it could go either way whether they’re granted or not.

What Should Someone Expect from the Norfolk Court System?

They should expect a fair chance to prove themselves innocent and present the evidence to the judge, but they should also expect to be chastised. Judges take a really hard stance against DUI because this type of charge can lead to manslaughter charges and they’re always quick to remind defendants of that.

Are Driver’s License Proceedings Separate or Part of the DUI Case?

They are heard in the same place. The determination of loss of license is decided on the same day of trial. And then, to have your license reinstated you must appear before the General District Court. You must show that you’ve completed all the requirements and have been on good behavior.

Does Norfolk Have Any Special Laws Pertaining to Restricted Driving Privileges?

A restricted license will allow the person to drive to and from work, to and from school if enrolled in classes, doctor appointments and possibly religious ceremonies. That is left up for the judge to decide, typically.