A Lawyer That You Can Trust

DUI

Torrance DUI Attorney

Defense for DUI Charges in CA

Pat Carey prosecuted hundreds DUI cases during his 8+ years with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office. By mastering the art of prosecuting DUIs, Pat Carey has become an expert at defending DUIs.  Pat trained police officers with local police departments on how to conduct DUI investigations, even assisting on the creation of the DUI investigation form the police officer used on YOUR case.

Time is of the essence when you are arrested for DUI.  The DMV will automatically suspend your driving privilege 10 days after your arrest if you do not call to request a stay of your suspension and request a hearing. Call today, and Pat Carey will have an immediate stay placed on your license and personally handle your DMV hearing for you in an attempt to make sure your license is never suspended.

Initially, by requesting a stay and hearing, you get to keep driving unless and until the DMV proves your guilt at the hearing.  Some people believe a lawyer can be a waste of money, but Pat Carey has proven time and time again that spending your money on a skilled lawyer can save you thousands in court and can potentially save you from losing your license for an extended period of time.

With your DUI, as mentioned above, you will technically have two cases:  one with the DMV, one in court.  They are separate proceedings, but do overlap.  For example, if you are convicted of a DUI in court in Los Angeles County, the DMV will add a condition that you install an “ignition interlock device” in your car.  Also, if you defeat the DMV at the hearing, but you are later convicted in court, the DMV will still suspend your license based on your court conviction.

The only way to properly work through this issues is to hire a Certified Criminal Law Specialist who knows his way around Court as well as the DMV.  That person is Pat Carey.  In addition to hundreds of successfully negotiated cases, our office is NOT afraid to go to trial.  Pat has taken 65 cases to a jury and has unmatched experience to those in his field.

“I Just Got a DUI. What Do I Do?”

 As a former prosecutor, a former DUI training specialist for law enforcement agencies, and most importantly a California driver’s license administrative action expert, you need to protect your rights immediately.  Pat Carey has more experience in court than most of his competition combined.

Our Specialty: Driving Under the Influence and Related Crimes

DUI-Related Crimes – CVC § 23152 (a)

“I Was Arrested for DUI? What Do I Do?”

The simple answer is that you need to act fast.  The DMV will suspend your license 10 days after your arrest automatically.   You need expert representation to save yourself thousands of dollars in court fines.  The law on DUI is some of the most complex law in the entire California code.  Pat Carey has inside knowledge prosecuting DUIs, training law enforcement agencies, and stopping the DMV in its tracks so YOU don’t lose your license.

Patrick Carey on the News

California Vehicle Code § 23152

If you are arrested for DUI in California you will be charged with at least two separate offenses.  Depending on your blood alcohol level, you may be charged with additional enhancements as well.

The two standard offenses you are charged with are California Vehicle Code Section 23152(a) and Section 23152(b).  VC 23152(a), or the so-called “a” count charges you with “driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.”  The “b” count, VC 23152(b) charges you with driving with a blood alcohol level over 0.08%.  As you can see, just because you blew less than 0.08% on the breathalyzer does not necessarily mean you will not be charged.

The maximum penalty for a first time DUI is six months in county jail and a file of $1,000 plus court costs.

The fines for this, and many crimes in California, can justify hiring a talented and well respected lawyer like Pat Carey. Although the maximum fine is listed, you should understand that other fees usually cause these fines to triple or even quadruple. Should you chose to represent yourself or chose a cheap lawyer, the results in court could lead to harsher penalties and harsher fines, proving you in fact saved yourself no money at all.

For example, while a District Attorney, Pat Carey trained not only Police Officers, but young Deputy District Attorneys on how to handle DUI cases. With this knowledge, he is able to, in some cases, have the charges reduced or even dismissed. Reduced charges leads to reduced court fines, saving you more money than you would have if you had chosen to represent yourself.

“Can I Get My Charge Reduced to a “Wet Reckless”?”

Commonly referred to as a “Wet Reckless,” the charge is actually “Driving With a Measurable Amount of Alcohol: California Vehicle Code Section 23103 per 23103.5.”

No one actually every gets originally charged with a “Wet Reckless” offense but it usually pled down from and original DUI charge by an attorney.

“In my 8 years as a prosecutor, I never once saw someone representing themselves earn a reduction to a Wet Reckless.”
– Pat Carey, former Deputy District Attorney who handled thousands of DUI cases.

To earn this reduction, it takes a two fold approach by an attorney who has mastered the law on DUI: (1) look to the facts of the case to see the prosecutor’s weaknesses in proving a DUI, and (2) look at the law; did the police make any mistakes in the investigation?

By discovering these things, Pat Carey is able to earn a reduction from your DUI charge to a “Wet Reckless”. The fines you would be required to pay would be slashed in half; the alcohol program would be reduced from a 3-month requirement to a 1-day requirement; and most notably, you would NOT be required to have the Ignition Interlock Device (in-car breathlyzer machine) installed in your car. (In 2014, the law in California was changed requiring the device be installed on EVERY car after a DUI conviction.)

Should you chose to represent yourself or chose a cheap lawyer, the results in court could lead to harsher penalties and harsher fines, proving you in fact saved yourself no money at all.

For example, while a District Attorney, Pat Carey trained not only Police Officers, but young Deputy District Attorneys on how to handle DUI cases. With this knowledge, he is able to, in some cases, have the charges reduced or even dismissed. Reduced charges leads to reduced court fines, saving you more money than you would have if you had chosen to represent yourself.

“What If I Crashed and Injured Someone and Was Arrested for DUI?”

If, as a result of your DUI, a collision occurs and someone is injured, you can be charged with a violation of Vehicle Code Section 23153. The charges for this type of DUI–“DUI with Injury” commonly are:

(1) Driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs causing bodily injury, under California Vehicle Code 23153(a) and

(2) Driving with a blood alcohol content of 0.08% or greater causing bodily injury, pursuant to California Vehicle Code 23153(b).

DUI with Injury is also what is commonly referred to as a “wobbler” such that, at the discretion of the prosecutor, can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony.

If charged as a felony, additional allegations can be added for “great bodily injury”. These and other allegations can lead to substantial prison time.

Misdemeanor DUI with Injury Penalties

Informal probation for up to five years, up to one year in a county jail, up to $5,000 in court fines, a three, nine, 18, or 30 month court approved alcohol or drug education program (otherwise known as “California DUI school”), a one or three-year suspension of your California driving privilege, and restitution to any/all injured parties.

Felony DUI with Injury Penalties

Two, three, or four years in the California State Prison, with an additional and consecutive three- to six-year prison sentence if any victim suffers great bodily injury, an additional and consecutive one-year sentence for each additional person that suffers any injury…up to three years maximum and a “strike” on your record pursuant to California’s Three Strike’s Law if anyone other than yourself suffers great bodily injury, between $1,015-$5,000 in fines, an 18- or 30-month court-approved DUI school, Habitual Traffic Offender (HTO) status for three years, and a five-year revocation of your California driver’s license.

The fines for this, and many crimes in California, can justify hiring a talented and well respected lawyer like Pat Carey. Although the maximum fine is listed, you should understand that other fees usually cause these fines to triple or even quadruple. Should you chose to represent yourself or chose a cheap lawyer, the results in court could lead to harsher penalties and harsher fines, proving you in fact saved yourself no money at all.

For example, while a District Attorney, Pat Carey trained not only Police Officers, but young Deputy District Attorneys on how to handle DUI cases. With this knowledge, he is able to, in some cases, have the charges reduced or even dismissed. Reduced charges leads to reduced court fines, saving you more money than you would have if you had chosen to represent yourself.

DUI Where There Is a Collision and a Death? What Are the Prosecutor’s Options?

Former Deputy District Attorney Pat Carey knows how prosecutors think when charging, investigating, and prosecuting cases in which there was a traffic accident and someone died as a result. This insider information and experienced is unmatched by any attorney who claims to be a “former prosecutor.” Pat personally filed, prosecuted, and even trained police officers on how to investigate these offenses.

As you will see below, there are various ways a crime can be charged in this situation. This is where having an attorney like Pat Carey with insider contacts and information in the District Attorney’s office can come in hand. Pat can have a pre-filing interview with the District Attorney after you or your loved one’s arrest, but prior to the filing of your case. This could be the difference between you getting charged with murder and manslaughter, and ending up in state prison for life or simply getting probation with minimal jail time. An attorney like former Deputy District Attorney Pat Carey pays dividends right from the outset and before your case even makes it to court.

If, as a result of the collision you were in, someone has died, and the police are able to produce evidence that you were intoxicated, the District Attorney has several filing options when considering how to proceed with you case:

Filing Option 1: Murder (So-called “Watson Murder”) (FELONY)

  • Charges: Penal Code § 187(a) – Second Degree Murder (and additional counts for each additional victim)
  • Punishment: 15 years to life in state prison for each charge.
  • What is the DA’s Filing Theory?: The DA will look to your driving history and conduct show that you acted with “conscious disregard for human life” while driving your car. DA will use prior traffic tickets, a prior DUI, or other conduct to show you intentionally drove knowing these consequences.

Filing Option 2: Gross Vehicular Manslaughter While Intoxicated (FELONY)

  • Charges: Penal Code § 191.5(a) 
  • Punishment: Sentencing range of 4, 6, or 10 years for each count
  • What is the DA’s Filing Theory?: That your driving pattern in conjunction with your intoxication amounted to “gross negligence”. Gross negligence verses ordinary negligence is a matter of degree and becomes the most complicated and fluid issue of the case goes to jury trial.

Filing Option 3: Vehicular Manslaughter While Intoxicated (FELONY)

  • Charges: Penal Code § 191.5(b)
  • Punishment: Sentencing range of 16 months, 2 years, or 4 years for each count.
  • What is the DA’s Filing Theory?: Your driving pattern in conjunction with his intoxication amounted to “ordinary negligence” rather than “gross negligence”.

Although noting in ideal when you find yourself in this situation, this is the ideal charge to receive if you were DUI and someone was killed as a result. Why? THIS CHARGE IS WHAT IS CALLED A “WOBBLER,” MEANING IT CAN LATER BE REDUCED TO A MISDEMEANOR. This process of course, would require the services of an attorney that has similar experience and insider connections like former Deputy District Attorney Pat Carey.

If, as a result of the collision you were in, someone has died, and the police are NOT able to produce evidence that you were intoxicated, the District Attorney has several filing options when considering how to proceed with you case:

Filing Option 1: Vehicular Manslaughter (Felony Charge; Gross Negligence)

  • Charges: Penal Code § 191(c)(1)
  • Punishment: 2, 4, or 6 years in state prison for each count
  • What is the DA’s Filing Theory?: That your driving pattern in conjunction with your intoxication amounted to “gross negligence”. Gross negligence verses ordinary negligence is a matter of degree and becomes the most complicated and fluid issue of the case goes to jury trial.

Filing Option 2: Vehicular Manslaughter (Misdemeanor Charge; Ordinary Negligence)

  • Charges: Penal Code § 191(c)(2)
  • Punishment: 1 year in county jail for each victim
  • What is the DA’s Filing Theory?: Your driving pattern in conjunction with his intoxication amounted to “ordinary negligence” rather than “gross negligence”.

Case Results

See How We've Helped Other People in Your Shoes
  • Cases Dismissed Los Angeles Superior Court, Long Beach
  • Probation Terminated Los Angeles - Central Criminal Courts Building
  • Charges Reduced Rancho Cucamonga Courthouse
  • Reduced Bail Top Torrance Courthouse
  • Case Dismissed Top Torrance Courthouse
  • “Found Pat to represent me on a case after I made a dumb mistake. I was completely clueless. Pat made is so much less stressful and most of all he negotiated a deal that ended up getting my case dismissed.” - Kristin B.
  • “Pat helped me with a troubling legal situation.  He made a very stressful process stress-free and was always available to explain each step of the process.” - Thomas B.
  • “He is exceptionally talented and knows his way around a courtroom better than most lawyers I’ve met. Pat is smart, aggressive and results oriented.” - Alan J.

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