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Copyright 2011 | The Alabama Bar Association requires the following disclaimer: No representation is made that the quality of legal services is any greater then the quality of legal services provided by other attorneys. | The content on this website is for informative purposes only and should not be considered legal advice. Legal advice can only be received from a licensed attorney after careful consideration of your unique circumstances. |


Criminal and DUI Law

Here, you will find information, news, and updates on various criminal and driving under the influence issues.



Your Right to Refuse. PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Tuesday, 23 November 2010 20:33

The question always arises from our clients that have been arrested for Driving under the Influence-- "Do I have the right to refuse to take the physical sobriety tests?"  The answer quite simply is absolutely.  In fact, there is no authority given to any member of any police agency that allows them to use physical force to make you take a sobriety test along the roadside or anywhere for that mater.  A police officer is allowed to ask you to take what is called a "field sobriety test" (FST) when they suspect you may be under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance.  Often times, however, the officer will phrase his request so that it comes across as a demand, such as telling you that they are going to give you a series of tests.  It is important for you to understand that you are not required to take the tests.

When a law enforcement officer is asking you to take a field-sobriety test, what they are really asking you to do is to confirm their suspicion that you are under the influence. 

Last Updated on Monday, 20 December 2010 22:53
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DUI Defense PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Monday, 25 October 2010 17:53

Everyone makes mistakes. If you have made the mistake of driving under the influence, or have been falsely arrested for it, then call our office today. The Law Office of Bill Lewis, LLC, has a DUI defense concentration. They have done it for years and they do it well. They don’t judge you, they just get results.

A common misconception is that it is illegal to drink and drive. That is simply not true. It is only illegal in Alabama to drive while you are under the influence. That is an important difference because you are only “under the influence ” if you either have a blood-alcohol content of .08 or you are impaired to an extent that you can no longer safely operate your vehicle. You are not guilty of a DUI just because you drink then drive your vehicle.

So, who makes the decision that you are Impaired? The police officer makes that decision. They use several tests that law enforcement claims indicate whether you are impaired or not. If you are unable to perform these tests to the officer’s satisfaction, then you may find yourself arrested and charged with DUI. It is important that you get an attorney that has experience in DUI cases. Bill Lewis Law attorneys have years of experience and not only have they successfully defended these cases, but they have also prosecuted them. Don’t you want that kind of experience on your side?

 
Criminal Defense PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Monday, 25 October 2010 17:47

Being charged with a crime is a very serious and challenging event in someone’s life. It can affect not only the one being charged but their family as well.

When you are charged with a crime and arrested. your first time in court will be what is referred to as you’re “initial appearance”. At that hearing the judge will inform you what you are being charged with. You will not plea guilty or not guilty at that time and you will not get to explain anything to the judge.  Then, if you request one, you will attend a “preliminary hearing”. At that hearing, the prosecutor must prove probable cause, meaning that you “probably committed the crime.” You are limited in the amount of time you have to request this hearing, so it is imperative that you contact us when you or your family member is arrested.

The criminal case, if probable cause is found or hearing is not requested, then goes before a grand jury. If the grand jury finds enough probable cause then you are indicted. Once indicted you will be set for an arraignment in Circuit Court. You will be read the charges against you, if you wish. You will be set for a “plea day”, at which you will declare if you are guilty or not guilty. If you plea not guilty you will then be set for a trial in the future.  At trial, a jury is picked to decide your guilt or innocence. Because the State has the burden of proving your case beyond a reasonable doubt, they will present evidence first. You, as the defendant, will then be allowed to present a defense.

 


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