When a person is arrested for a DUI or any other offense, they need to realize that they have rights – and the foremost of those rights is the right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty by the prosecutor.
Sherman Oaks, CA (PRWEB) July 21, 2011
A recent drunk driving crackdown over Fourth of July weekend resulted in 902 arrests in Ventura and Los Angeles counties, according to the California Highway Patrol.
Being arrested in the crackdown, however, does not mean those motorists have been convicted of any crime, says Southern California DUI defense lawyer Joshua Newstat.
“When a person is arrested for a DUI or any other offense, they need to realize that they have rights – and the foremost of those rights is the right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty by the prosecutor,” says Newstat, who practices in Ventura County with the Southern California DUI defense lawyers of Lessem & Newstat, LLP.
“In many cases, the prosecution may actually be unable to meet its burden,” Newstat says. “That’s why it’s important to work with an experienced criminal defense lawyer who will take a hard look at the prosecutor’s case and evaluate its strengths and weaknesses.”
Newstat pointed to recent news in Ventura County that as many as 300 drunk driving arrests may have been tainted by faulty hand-held breathalyzer devices that were used between January and March of this year.
According to the Ventura County Star, although only two of the Alco-Sensor V devices gave erratic breath test results, problems were reported with eight of the devices. The newspaper, quoting county crime lab officials, said the breathalyzer manufacturer said that all 128 devices purchased by the county had a design flaw that could impact results.
“If the breathalyzer test results are faulty, then yes, I would call that a serious weakness in the state’s case,” Newstat says.
Jeremy Lessem, an experienced Los Angeles criminal defense attorney and co-founder of Lessem & Newstat, LLP, says that flawed breath test results may cast doubt on the prosecution’s entire case, including the arresting officer’s testimony about field sobriety tests, driver behavior and the odor of alcohol.
“A seasoned DUI defense attorney is going to leave no stone unturned,” Lessem says. “The attorney will realize what’s at stake for their clients, including the loss of their driving privileges, vehicle impoundment, fines and – in some cases – jail time, and they will work hard to detect flaws in the state’s case.”
“Ventura County and Los Angeles County are aggressive when it comes to prosecuting DUI cases,” Newstat adds, “and people charged with DUI need to be aggressive about protecting their rights.”
About Lessem & Newstat, LLP
Lessem & Newstat, LLP, is a full service Southern California defense law firm concentrating in criminal law and civil litigation. The firm’s criminal defense attorneys represent clients in matters that include DUI, DMV/traffic offenses, hit and run, drug crimes, medical marijuana, domestic violence, theft, fraud, murder, violent crimes, firearm possession, white collar crimes, sex offenses, probation violations, expungement, elder abuse and mental health law. The firm also handles business, personal injury, civil rights, police brutality and products liability cases.
Lessem & Newstat’s main offices are located in Sherman Oaks and Ventura, California, and the firm serves communities throughout Los Angeles, Ventura and Santa Barbara counties, including San Fernando, Ventura, Pasadena, Burbank, Glendale, Van Nuys, the San Fernando Valley, Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, Sylmar, Lancaster, Santa Clarita, Beverly Hills, Hollywood, Malibu, Santa Monica, Venice, Airport Courthouse, Compton, Pomona, Inglewood, Simi Valley, Oxnard, Westlake, Thousand Oaks, Santa Paula, Fillmore, Ojai, Camarillo and Port Hueneme.
To learn more about Lessem & Newstat, LLP, call the firm at (800) 295-1054 or use its convenient online form.