What To Expect in Court From a Norfolk DUI Charge

If you are charged with driving under the influence in Norfolk, Virginia, it is important that you know what you will be facing in court. Below, a Norfolk DUI lawyer discusses what you should know and be prepared for as you start your trial. For more specific information regarding your case or to begin building a defense, call and schedule a consultation today.

How Long Does a Norfolk DUI Case Take?

If there is no reason for extended continuances or anything like that, then a Norfolk DUI case usually takes about a month to two months between the moment that someone is arrested to the moment that the trial is concluded.

How Are DUI Cases in Norfolk Prosecuted?

Norfolk takes statutory guidelines very closely which are pretty serious and vigorously prosecuted.

Overall, the prosecution has to show that the defendant was affected to the point that their driving was impaired. There is no real set of standard for the drugs in this situation, but there are certain drugs that can lead to a presumption. With alcohol, they just have to show that someone was impaired under the influence of alcohol to a point that their driving was affected and needs to be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

What Evidence is Presented To Prove This?

In Norfolk DUI cases, the evidence typically consists of any field sobriety test that the officer performs on the scene.  This is a big bulk of it generally if someone did perform the field sobriety test because it’s very persuasive to show exactly how they were behaving at that point in time.

The BAC test is also presented as evidence which is the one that’s taken at the station.  If someone took the preliminary breath test, then this one is not used as evidence because it only goes towards probable cause for the arrest at the scene and not actually towards guilt in the trial.  If there are any witnesses at all that can testify, then they can also present evidence, but usually the only person present is the defendant and the officer.  So the officer’s testimonies of his observation are going to be the bulk of what evidence is available.

How Is Sentencing Handled in Norfolk DUI Cases?

In Norfolk, the sentencing goes by the statutory guidelines always.  There is not much leniency or waving away from these guidelines.  The judges, the prosecutors and the police officers tend to stick to them very closely.

What Factors Can Impact Sentencing?

In sentencing, a court will consider someone’s prior records of course if they have any previous DUIs or other kinds of drinking offenses, this will be something that will be considered when the sentence is decided.  Also, whatever happened at the scene in regards to how the defendant was behaving, someone who is polite and cooperative is generally can have an easier time than someone who is belligerent and really uncooperative with the officer. Because DUIs are statutory based and the courts don’t usually stray, there is not much that is considered aside from pretty persuasive evidence of something suggesting that the defendant has been going through treatments.