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Frequently Asked Questions

Q:
The police officer didn’t read me my Miranda rights. Does this mean my case will be dismissed?
A:
Probably not, no. Many people mistakenly believe that Miranda Rights must be given as soon as someone is arrested, or the case is invalid. This probably stems from cop shows on television and movies showing the Miranda Rights being provided in this way. In real life, Miranda only applies when there is a “custodial interrogation.” Moreover, a violation of Miranda generally only serves to suppress statements that were made and generally does not lead to a dismissal. Regardless of whether the officer provides you with the Miranda Rights, you always have the right to remain silent and the right to speak to an attorney.
Q:
Can I refuse when a police officer asks to search my car?
A:
Yes, you always have the right to refuse to consent to a search of your car. The Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution prohibits unreasonable searches and seizures. However, if you consent to a search, it is no longer considered unreasonable. This is why many officers will ask for consent and be very insistent that you provide it. If you find yourself in that situation, you can refuse to consent and ask if you are free to leave. If the officer says you are free to leave, you should do so!
Q:
Why was I arrested for DUI when I was just sleeping in my car?
A:
In Arizona, you can be charged for DUI if you were in “actual physical control” of your car. This is confusing to many people, as the D in DUI stands for driving. The officers will note whether your engine was running, the location of the keys, where the car was parked, and even in what position you were sleeping in the car. These cases are usually highly defensible, and The Nava Law Firm has successfully defended many such cases at trial.
Q:
I was arrested for a DUI. Will I lose my license?
A:
It is possible that your license will be suspended, cancelled, or revoked because of your DUI charge. This can happen prior to your conviction via an administrative hearing or after your conviction. Whether your license is suspended will depend on many factors, such as whether you have prior traffic related convictions and whether you refused to provide a sample of your breath, blood, or urine to the police officer when asked.
Q:
Can you help me get my rights back?
A:
Yes, the Nava Law Firm has extensive experience in helping people restore their civil rights.
Q:
Do you handle outstanding warrants?
A:
Yes, The Nava Law Firm is experienced in defending and quashing warrants. Many times, our clients have moved out of Arizona and do not realize they were charged with a crime until years later. In those instances, we file motions to quash the warrant and immediately start working on the case. Most of the time, our clients do not even need to return to Arizona to handle the warrant issue.
Q:
Can I get charged with a DUI if I have a medical marijuana card?
A:
Unfortunately, a medical marijuana card does not prevent you from being charged with DUI. Arizona charges Drug DUIs two ways. First, there is Arizona Revised Statute Section 28-1381(A)(3), which makes it a crime for a person to drive while there is any drug or its metabolite in the person's body. However, if the drug is validly prescribed, you cannot be charged under Section 28-1381(A)(3). Arizona also makes it a crime for you to drive while impaired by a drug, even if that drug has been validly prescribed to you. This is how prosecutors bring charges against a person even if they have a medical marijuana card. Unlike alcohol, the medical community has not determined a level of THC at which everyone is impaired. This is why having a medical marijuana card is important. If you have a medical marijuana card, the prosecutors must prove you were impaired. Since there is no level at which the prosecution experts can say a person is impaired, the prosecution's case is much harder. If you’re going to use marijuana and drive, get a medical marijuana card!
Q:
What’s an Extreme DUI?
A:
The charge for extreme DUI can be found in Arizona Revised Statute Section 28-1382. It is when someone is alleged to be DUI and their blood alcohol content (BAC) is above a 0.15 or a 0.20. This increases the penalties associated with the crime and can lead to more jail time. Sometimes lawyers will refer to a DUI with a BAC over 0.20 as a “super extreme” DUI, but that is simply a colloquialism. Importantly, an Extreme DUI is still only a misdemeanor charge.
Q:
Do you handle cases throughout Arizona?
A:
Yes, The Nava Law Firm handles cases throughout Arizona. Armando Nava has successfully defended both misdemeanor and felony cases in all fifteen Maricopa counties, from Mohave to Santa Cruz.
Q:
What’s the difference between a misdemeanor DUI and a felony DUI?
A:
DUIs can be charged as either misdemeanor or felony offenses. Many people think the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of the person driving is what dictates the level of offense, but this is a common misconception. The BAC has nothing to do with whether someone will be charged with a misdemeanor or felony. There are five reasons why someone would be charged with a felony or “Aggravated DUI,” and they can be found in Arizona Revised Statute Section 28-1383. Specifically, you will be charged with a felony DUI if: 1. The person is DUI while the person's driver license or privilege to drive is suspended, canceled, revoked or refused or while a restriction is placed on the person's driver license or privilege to drive as a result of violating section 28-1381 or 28-1382 or under section 28-1385. 2. The person gets a third DUI within 84 months. 3. The person is DUI while a person under fifteen years of age is in the vehicle. 4. The person is DUI while the person is ordered by the court or required pursuant to section 28-3319 by the department to equip any motor vehicle the person operates with a certified ignition interlock device. 5. The person is DUI while driving the wrong way on a highway. Reason number five is relatively new. While you may think the word “highway” means only the interstates in Arizona, you would be wrong. Even though that was the intent of the legislature, the law was poorly written, and prosecutors will charge a person if they are driving the wrong way on a city street. If the person does not fall into one of the categories above, then they will be charged with a misdemeanor DUI. Misdemeanors carry fewer penalties and have fewer collateral consequences than felonies. Regardless of whether you are charged with a misdemeanor of felony, a DUI charge can be scary. Please contact The Nava Law Firm to schedule your free consultation.
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