A DUI arrest is the legal apprehension of a person who is found driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. In most cases a DUI arrest is made when a person has a 0.08 percent or greater blood alcohol concentration (BAC). Many states also have zero tolerance laws which state that people under the legal drinking age who are found driving under the influence of any amount of drugs or alcohol are subject to a DUI arrest. Some states will also enhance the penalties for a DUI arrest when a person's BAC is exceedingly high; between 0.15 and 0.20.
When a DUI arrest does not involve a vehicle accident, it begins when an officer pulls a person over. The following situations may instigate a DUI arrest: a roadside safety check point, reasonable suspicion that a driver is under the influence, unusual operation of a vehicle, or some other factor eliciting probable cause. As with any roadside stop, the officer will ask the driver for license and registration, ask questions, and observe the driver and passengers. If the officer has reasonable suspicion that the driver is DUI, s/he may perform field sobriety tests.
A breathalyzer may be performed on site or the officer may make a DUI arrest and take the driver to the police station for chemical testing of his/her blood, breath, or urine. If the driver is not found to be above the legal limit, s/he will be free to go. If the driver is beyond the legal BAC limit, the DUI arrest will stand. Every US state has what are known as implied consent laws. Implied consent laws make it compulsory for people to submit to chemical testing of their blood, breath, or urine at the request of a police officer. Failure to submit to testing during a DUI arrest can result in harsher penalties and automatic driver's license sanctions.
The person who just had a DUI arrest will be booked and may remain in temporary police custody until bail is set and paid. Bail is set by a judge within the first hours or days following a DUI arrest. A person with a DUI arrest is released once bail is made. The function of bail is to ensure that the DUI arrest person will show up for subsequent court proceedings.
Following a DUI arrest, the alleged offender will face criminal and department of motor vehicle proceedings. If there was property damage or personal injury involved in the DUI arrest case, the person may also face civil litigation against them. The criminal penalties for a DUI arrest depend on the state and circumstances of the case but can include incarceration, fines, community service, probation, DUI School, drug/alcohol rehabilitation, and more. After a DUI arrest the person may have his/her license restricted, suspended, or revoked. A DUI arrest can also remain on a person's record for years to come if they are convicted.
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