According to Arizona Family, Arizona has some of the strictest DUI laws in the country. Arizona requires offenders to serve the longest minimum jail time. The state is one of 24 states that require offenders to use ignition interlock devices on their vehicles.
Because individuals who have been charged with a DUI in Arizona face stricter penalties and harsher sentencing, it is prudent for those who have been arrested with a DUI to seek the help of a DUI criminal defense attorney like Steven Zachary with Zachary Law Group PLC.
The Arizona Supreme Court recently issued a ruling that could have an impact on the duty of care arresting officers have to those who have been arrested for a DUI in Arizona. According to KJZZ the Arizona Supreme Court ruled that Arizona can be sued for the accidental death of a woman who was killed when a driver hit an Arizona Patrol Officer’s car where she was being held in custody. The woman had been charged with a DUI and the state attempted to evade a lawsuit filed by the family of the deceased using sovereign immunity law.
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, state sovereign immunity is the doctrine that protects state government from lawsuits by the people. In order for a lawsuit to be filed, the government must consent to be sued. Arizona’s Supreme Court ruling establishes that the woman’s DUI charge does not eliminate the state’s duty of care to individuals who are held in custody.
Being charged with a DUI in Arizona can be a frightening experience. Law enforcement officers have immense powers when it comes to requiring drivers to submit to mandatory drug and alcohol testing if there is reasonable suspicion that a driver was driving while under the influence of alcohol. Under Arizona’s implied consent law, if an individual is arrested for driving while under the influence, law enforcement have the right to ask drivers to submit to mandatory drug and alcohol screening. Driving in Arizona implies consent to these tests. Individuals who refuse to take the required tests will be asked to surrender their licenses. Furthermore, the refusal to take the test may be used in court as evidence.
Yet, law enforcement are not allowed to forcibly administer a test to a driver who has been arrested for a DUI. A driver can still refuse to undergo testing, though he or she may be subject to penalty. The Arizona Supreme Court decision is a victory for the rights of those who are held in custody and to those who have been arrested in Arizona.
In recent weeks, there has been great public outcry over the suicide of a Texas woman while she was being held in custody. The nation as a whole has been pushing for greater accountability among officers and officials, especially when it comes to protecting the rights of those who have been arrested.
If you’ve been arrested or have been accused of a DUI, a criminal defense law firm like www.zacharylawgroup.com can offer you assistance and defense and help ensure that you are treated fairly by officers and prosecutors.