Being charged with DUI amounts to a very stressful situation. The fines and penalties of a conviction are harsh, and the social consequences can be even more challenging. If you believe your charge was conjured up without any evidence, it makes the matter much more difficult. If you are facing a charge of DUI without evidence, you should not delay reaching out and consulting with an experienced Colorado Springs DUI attorney.
Can I Be Charged With DUI Without Evidence?
The question of whether or not you can be charged with DUI without evidence is a tricky one – and one that needs to be broken down further.
Pulling You Over
You should understand that you can be pulled over in Colorado for any traffic law violation, which is often how DUI charges begin. One of the most common charges that ultimately leads to DUI charges is improper lane usage, also called lane drifting, which means that the officer thought you were weaving between lanes – or alleges that you were. In other words, the officer does not need a lot of evidence to pull you over in the first place. Other common reasons for pulling drivers over include:
- Seat belt violations
- Driving with obstruction of view
- Driving without registration or with expired registration
- Reckless driving
- Illegal U-turns
In other words, the officer who pulls you over has considerable discretion in the matter.
To charge you with DUI, the officer must have probable cause to pursue the matter. Meaning the officer cannot pull you over solely on a hunch that you were drinking and cannot investigate you for DUI after pulling you over for another cause – such as any of the above – without probable cause for doing so. Without evidence that amounts to probable cause, the officer has no legal right to pursue a DUI charge. However, sometimes DUI investigations do proceed without evidence. A dedicated DUI attorney will skillfully advocate for your legal rights should be the subject of such an investigation. Without adequate evidence that was obtained legally, you should not face a DUI charge.
DUI Penalties in Colorado
The penalties you face are considerable if you are charged with DUI in Colorado.
A first DUI charge is a traffic misdemeanor that can lead to any combination of the following:
- Five days to 1 year in jail – if your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is .2 percent or higher (the legal limit is .08 percent), the minimum stay is ten days
- Fines from $600 to $1,000
- From 48 to 96 hours of public service
- A license suspension of up to nine months
- 12 points on your license
- A potential requirement for alcohol education classes
- Up to 2 years of probation
A second DUI charge is more serious still and can lead to any combination of the following:
- From 10 days to one year in jail (if your first DUI was within five years, the ten days must be consecutive)
- Fines from $600 to $1,500
- From 48 to 120 hours of public service
- License revocation of up to one year
- Ignition interlock device (IID) requirement for up to 2 years
- 12 points on your license
- Alcohol education classes
- At least two years of probation
If You Are Charged With DUI in Colorado
If you have been charged with DUI in Colorado, the process forward can vary, but the basics include:
- The officer will provide you with a Notice of Express Consent Affidavit and Notice of Revocation, which is a document notifying you that you have seven days from the date of arrest to request a hearing at a Colorado DMV. Failure to do so leads to license revocation on the eighth day.
- If your blood was tested, the officer would file the Notice with the DMV, which will send you a letter notifying you of your test results and letting you know you have ten days from the letter’s date to request a hearing. If you fail to do so, your license will be revoked on the 11th day.
- You will face not only a criminal charge that proceeds through the court system with jurisdiction over your charge but also a completely separate administrative process that the Colorado DMV oversees and that determines the status of your driver’s license.
An Experienced Colorado Springs DUI Attorney Can Help
Our savvy DUI attorneys are proud to serve Douglas, El Paso, Teller, and Pueblo counties and have the experience, legal insight, and drive to skillfully advocate for your case’s most favorable resolution – including charges of DUI without evidence. We’re here to help, so please don’t wait to contact or call us for a free consultation today.