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Legal-Guru
Legal-Guru, Criminal Justice Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
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Experience:  Experienced Criminal Trial Attorney since 1998.
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DUI Ticket

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I recently got a DUI ticket by an State Trooper. I was parked at a gas station at the pump waiting on someone to come and get me because I was too tired to drive. While waiting on them I fell asleep and was woke up by Richland County. I was instructed to get out of the vehicle and set at the pump that I was park by. The ambulance was called to see if anything was wrong with me and left the scene. I was then asked if I had anyone that was willing to come and get me and I told them yes. I was then told that my mother, which whom vehicle I was driving, was contacted and was on the way to come and get me. During the questionings, at some point, the State Troop pulled up and ask for me to do a sobriety test. I did do the "heel to toe" test and decline the rest. After that, at that point I was placed under arrest. While being place under arrest my ride and mother showed up at the scene and was told that I was going to be released to them as long as I wasn't driving, but it was in the State Trooper's hand. So, I went to jail and was released on an PR bond within twelve hours. When I got home I looked at the ticket and notice that on the citation it has my SCDL number on there, but when I was placed under arrest I had an NCDL on me. I'm just relocating back to SC and after the fact I just did a change of address at the DMV and found out that my license was not suspended so I have that now. A few days later I receive a letter in the mail from the DMV that my license is in fact suspended now along with a list of things that I have to do in order to get an restricted license. Okay, now my question is, I don't have an lawyer because I don't have the money to afford it at the time so I'm representing myself. My court date is coming up very soon and would like to know that since the State Trooper didn't put my NCDL on the citation when I was placed under arrest is that grounds for dismissal? If so, then what are some steps that I have to take in order to have it dismissed, and if not, then what are some helpful advice that you could give me to try to bet this?

Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Legal-Guru replied 1 year ago.
Welcome to JustAnswer.

I'm sorry that you were so unlucky that the state trooper showed up. To answer your questions:

My court date is coming up very soon and would like to know that since the State Trooper didn't put my NCDL on the citation when I was placed under arrest is that grounds for dismissal?

The drivers license number has nothing to do with the DUI charge. The trooper does not have to put a DL number on the ticket. It is for identification purposes only.

If so, then what are some steps that I have to take in order to have it dismissed, and if not, then what are some helpful advice that you could give me to try to bet this?

My advice is to hire a lawyer. You are not going to beat it by representing yourself, and you should be able to find one to handle a first time DUI for a lot less than $4,700. In my experience pre-paid legal is a scam. I have never seen a lawyer from pre-paid legal come to court. The most I have ever seen them do is make a phone call.

The reality is almost no first time DUI goes to trial even with the highest paid attorney. That's because they are usually hard to win and the offer on a guilty plea is so much less than what you would face if convicted at trial. The most important thing hiring a lawyer will do is having them negotiate the best deal possible for you.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.


Thanks for that information, so since I don't have a lawyer to represent me should I go ahead and plead guilty and get it over with instead of trying to fight it? I know that you mention that the best thing that I should do is to get an lawyer but since that's not an option in this matter because it's a little to late I believe to try and get one since my court date is on the 10th of this month, or is it too late to find someone to represent me in this matter and help me get the best deal out of it? Also, if I do decide to represent myself then do you have any helpful advice to give?

Expert:  Legal-Guru replied 1 year ago.
You are very welcome.

(1) It is not too late to hire a lawyer. You can plead not guilty and they will give you a new court date. That will give you time to hire an attorney.

(2) If you choose not to hire an attorney, get to your court date and try to talk to the prosecutor asking him/her what they are willing to offer you if you plead guilty. You may be able to negotiate with them a little although offers on DUI's are pretty standardized especially if you do not have an attorney.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.


Okay, this maybe the last of my questions here, so if I was to plead "not guilty" do I have to stay with that plea or can I change it? If I do decide to change it does that look bad on me? Also, around and about what ball park could I find a lawyer to represent my case?

Expert:  Legal-Guru replied 1 year ago.
so if I was to plead "not guilty" do I have to stay with that plea or can I change it?

You can change a not guilty plea to a guilty plea, but you cannot do the reverse. Everyone pleads not guilty until they reach a plea agreement.

If I do decide to change it does that look bad on me?

Not at all. Non-lawyers think a not guilty plea means someone is saying they did not commit the crime. That's not accurate, and all lawyers and judges recognize that.

Also, around and about what ball park could I find a lawyer to represent my case?

Lawyer fees vary widely from lawyer to lawyer and by geographic location, but if you shop around a little, I would expect you could probably find a decent lawyer for about half of the amount you were quoted by the Pre-Paid Legal attorney.
Legal-Guru, Criminal Justice Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 1362
Experience: Experienced Criminal Trial Attorney since 1998.
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