When you’re arrested for a DUI in the state of California, you will be imprisoned while you wait for your arraignment. An arraignment is the act of bringing a defendant to court and formally reading the charges against him or her. It is at this point that you enter your plea: guilty or not guilty.
However, that’s not the only jail time you will serve if you are convicted. All DUI crimes in the state of California come with jail time. How long you are in jail depends upon the severity of the crime with which you were charged.
Being Arrested for a DUI
Upon being arrested on a DUI charge, you will be brought to the police or Sheriff’s station for processing. If you are injured in a crash related to a DUI, you will be brought to the hospital first, then processed upon your release.
Once you arrive at the station, you will likely be ordered to take a chemical test to measure the amount of suspected alcohol or drugs in your system. After that, you’ll be read your rights and questioned. You can have a lawyer present for this, if you so choose.
From there, your driver’s license will likely be taken away, and you will be given a temporary license in its place. You will be informed that your license is to be suspended, however you have ten days to fight the suspension.
You may want to consider retaining a lawyer to help you fight this. Living without a license is incredibly stressful, especially when trying to get to work and back. And the last thing you need is to be charged with driving without a license.
While you may be held in a jail cell during this process, this is local prison, not a prison for hardened criminals. Still, it’s not a place you want to be, and our lawyers at the Simmrin Law Group can help you spend as little time in jail as possible.
If this is your first DUI-related conviction, or if your last DUI-related conviction was more than 10 years ago, you will be sentenced to a minimum of 48 hours in jail, up to but not exceeding six months. Time served will be in a local prison, rather than a state prison, and you can usually serve your time in the same city of your arrest.
A DUI defense lawyer may be able to work out a negotiation in your favor. For instance, he or she may be able to convince the court to supplement your 48-hour jail sentence with a five-day work release instead.
If, however, this is your second or third offense, the punishments may be more severe:
- Second DUI Offense – Up to a year in a local jail
- Third DUI Offense – Mandatory six months to a year in a local jail
- Fourth (or More) DUI Offense – Up to 3 years in state prison
If you have four or more offenses, it no longer matters if they were within the last ten years. You can be sentenced to up to three years in jail, even if it has been ten years since your last conviction.
Our lawyers at the Simmrin Law Group can negotiate on your behalf to try to help the court understand your situation and give you the best deal possible.
Work release is a program individuals can enroll in where they work off jail time by doing something to benefit the community instead, like picking up trash. Work release is meant to rehabilitate convicted offenders and, as such, many activities count as credit. For instance, work release can include:
- Training for a particular job (vocational training)
- Drug or alcohol rehab
- Educational courses, like those offered with a GED
One day of work on work release is equivalent to one day of jail time. Therefore, for every day of work release you complete, you knock one day off of your jail sentence. This is why work release is an ideal substitute for a minor jail sentence. If the sentence is only a matter of days, it may be easier for your lawyer to convince the court to order the supplement.
Have You Been Arrested For A DUI? Call Us Now!
Going to jail is the scariest part of any criminal charge. One of the experienced criminal defense lawyers on our team can help you fight your charges, ensuring that you have done all you can to get the best deal possible.
Fill out the form to the right, or call us at (310) 997-4688 to speak with one of the lawyers on our team. You will receive a free consultation with no obligation to retain. We’re on your side when you feel like no one else is. Call us today!