Defining Driving in Prince William County DUI Cases
Virginia law does not require the accused to be “driving” a motor vehicle while intoxicated in order to be charged with DUI. Merely operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated is enough to get charged. The legal definition of operation essentially means the vehicle was activated to some extent above being fully parked and turned off, or was readily poised for activation based on the keys being in the ignition.
If you have any questions about defining driving in Prince William County DUI cases, you should consult with a knowledgeable attorney. And if you are facing charges, a dedicated DUI attorney could fight for you.
How a Passenger Can Get Charged with a DUI?
A passenger can get charged with a DUI either because it is not clear that the person was indeed a passenger at the time the motor vehicle was operated, or the passenger was still technically operating the vehicle while the driver left the passenger with sole control of the vehicle for some period of time.
There may be confusion as to who was driving the vehicle if there was a wreck and the driver and passenger got out of the vehicle before the police could show up to the scene. In this situation, the passenger and driver might refuse to admit who was actually driving. Therefore, the officer will have to make that decision. For more information, consult with a seasoned lawyer.
Where a Driver Can Get Arrested for a DUI
There is no rule on where a person can be arrested for a DUI. There are certainly occasional cases in Virginia where a person is arrested outside their vehicle in a parking lot, driveway, front yard, or even inside their home minutes or hours later. In accident cases, some people are even arrested while they are at the hospital receiving medical attention or supervision. These arrest scenarios tend to occur when there is some irregular reason for the arrest to be delayed, such as a person’s unconsciousness or flight from the scene.
Law Enforcement Officers Patrol Parking Lots Near Bars and Restaurants
Prince William County law enforcement monitors the surrounding roadways of bars and restaurants more closely than normal in an effort to detect DUIs. This heightened extent of patrolling also varies with the time of day and day of the week, in connection to when these venues will be busiest in the afternoon and evenings. Police know that many patrons who are trying to reconcile the substantial inconvenience of getting another ride with avoiding drunk driving choose to try and sober up while parked in their vehicles. Unfortunately, if the vehicle is on to any extent or the keys are in the ignition, this still constitutes DUI even if the driver is sleeping when found by the police.
How an Experienced Prince William County Lawyer Could Help
Defining driving in Prince William County DUI cases is crucial to the prosecution. If you have been charged with a DUI, you should get in touch with an accomplished DUI attorney today. A skilled lawyer could advocate for you and possibly help you reach a favorable resolution to your case.