Under what circumstances can you be charged with a DUI?

UPDATED: Jul 13, 2011

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Under what circumstances can you be charged with a DUI?

I was charged with a DUI twice under the same circumstances. I was on my ownproperty with no intent to drive anywhere else. I have a gated/fenced property with a clear and visible “NO TRESPASSING” sign on the front gate. Both times the police showed up I was not in possession of the keys; I was not in the vehicle. They have no video evidence to prove I was “operating the vehicle” but they said they can arrest me on the assumption Iwas driving. When questioned I was never read my Miranda rights before the initial questioning. I have no money for a lawyer. Can a public defender find me innocent?

Asked on July 13, 2011 under Criminal Law, California


Stephanie Jamieson / Law Office of Stephanie Louise Jamieson

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

A public defender cannot find you innocent. But a public defender can be appointed to represent you in your case. The public defender will likely fight the arrests on multiple grounds, based on the facts you gave here, including (1) you were not driving / operating a motor vehicle; (2) you were on private property; and (3) having any post-arrest statements excluded based on a Miranda violation. No attorney can guarantee results, and the success of your case will obviously depend upon the specific circumstances surrounding each charge, but there are arguments to be made under each of the above points. Upon review of the facts of your case, the public defender will surely find other ways to attack the charge that may help in getting the charges dismissed or reduced, or at least increase the possibility of an acquittal if you choose to go to trial. Request a public defender, if you qualify under the income guidelines, one will be appointed, and you can discuss your case with him or her to see what your options are. Based on what you've stated, these are cases that you should at least try to fight. 

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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