October 17, 2010 • Jerod Gunsberg, Los Angeles Criminal Defense Lawyer
Many people accused of a DUI in Los Angeles believe that their lawyer get their DUI charge reduced to something known as a “wet reckless.” For the uninitiated, a “wet reckless” is an alcohol related misdemeanor that is similar, but less serious than a DUI. The benefits to a wet reckless include a shorter probation period, lower fines, six weeks of a weekly alcohol class rather than 12 weeks, and in LA County there in no requirement that an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) be installed on your vehicle. However, a wet reckless is still “priorable”, meaning that if you get convicted DUI in ten years, the wet reckless counts as a prior DUI conviction and the penalties on your next DUI will be enhanced.
Do not be fooled by an attorney promising you that he or she can “get you a wet reckless with no problem” in your DUI case. For starters, a good DUI lawyer should always vigorously investigate your case and be ready to take your case to trial. Whether your case actually goes to trial or not, preparing for trial is the way to get the best deals. Now, if you blow a .08 or .09 on a first offense, sure there’s a strong chance you can get a wet reckless and if your lawyer does his or her job properly you may even get an even better offer. But if your breath or blood shows that you have anything more than a .10, your lawyer is going to have work to get that wet reckless. Los Angeles DAs and City Attorneys don’t give away wet reckless for nothing, your lawyer is going to have to research the case, file the discovery motions and really challenge the police and prosecution’s case.
- Were the chemical tests performed properly?
- Was the breath machine functioning normally?
- Did the officer administer the breath tests correctly?
- If blood was drawn, was the blood drawn, preserved and stored properly?
- Was the equipment that tested the blood in working order?
These are just a few of the issues that a lawyer needs to investigate and discover in most cases. Of course, if there is really a significant problem with the way in which the tests were done, you may find that your lawyer is able to get the charge reduced even further or you may even be able to take your case to trial. Whatever your circumstance you need to be sure that a qualified criminal defense lawyer is handling your DUI case.