John has defended hundreds of DUI/DWI cases in his career. He is known as a pragmatic and effective defender, who thoroughly investigates and prepares each case for trial. Virginia has particularly rigorous laws in this area. A deep working knowledge of all statutes, DMV regulations, case law, and ongoing developments is essential for the attorney who defends these cases. We have found over the years that each case has its own particular facts, which must be reviewed in great detail to ascertain all possible defenses. Any weakness or flaw in the prosecution's case can and should be pressed to obtain a dismissal of the charge if possible, or in many cases a more favorable outcome than might otherwise be expected. Where necessary, we are prepared to assist our clients in obtaining pre-court counselling and evaluations, traffic schools and driver improvement programs, and in evaluating all other personal issues that may have an impact on the case.
DUI/DWI cases are very serious and we believe the laws will change again this year. If convicted of a first offense the maximum sentence is 12 months in jail, a maximum $2,500 fine and loss of driving privileges for 12 months. Unless the case is particularly egregious, or involves an accident, most first offense cases will result in a much lower fine, and the issuance of a limited license for specific times and purposes. However, each jurisdiction in Northern Virginia has its own unique “in-house-rules” on how such cases are handled. Several will now attempt to impose an actual jail sentence on every case, while others will refuse to issue a restricted license without a pre-court evaluation of the Defendant. We are aware of these variations, as we practice in all Northern Virginia jurisdictions. Penalties for second or subsequent DUI convictions are far more serious, and usually involve jail sentences, large fines, and extensive loss of driving privileges. We will explain this in detail if you need our services.