PHOENIX DUI CASES
The Definitive Guide (2019)
Is this what you are looking for?
Here are some things experienced Phoenix DUI Lawyers know. Most DUI arrests in Phoenix are prosecuted in the Phoenix Municiple Court. At the same time, being arrested for DUI in Phoenix does not mean your case will be prosecuted in Phoenix City Court.
Police have discretion to submit DUI charges to a county court (called a “justice court”). In practice, if you are arrested by Phoenix Police for DUI then your case is sent to the Phoenix Municiple Court.
On the other hand, if your DUI arrest occured by a deputy with the Department of Public Safety (DPS) or the Maricopa County Sherrif’s Office then your case will be sent to justice court.
What do you need to know about a DUI in Phoenix Municiple Court?
In any large organization, there are good people and people not so good. The Phoenix Police Department is no exception. Accordingly, you should be aware of some of the more notable things that have come out about the Phoenix Police Department. Here is a recent article that provides: “A Timeline of the Phoenix Police Department’s Worst Misconduct Scandals.”
Here are a few more recent issues in the media:
The Arraignment is provided on your citation or on a summons mailed to you. The primary purpose of your arraignment in Phoenix City court is to inform you of what specific Arizona DUI laws the police claim you violated. If you are cited with an Arizona DUI and released a few hours later, then an arraignment is your first court hearing.
An arraignment can feel more adminstrative than legal. If you hire a private Phoenix DUI Lawyer then they can appear on your behalf at the arraignment.
Pre-Trial Disposition Conferences – a “PDC” give your attorney a chance to discuss your case with the prosecutor, monitor discovery and enter into plea negotiations.
Jury Trial – if you were unable to resolve your case then it will proceed to trial. Arizona specifically makes DUI cases jury eligible.
After a DUI arrest a blood sample is typcially drawn by Phoenix police officers. Once collected it’s sent to the Phoenix Crime Lab.
Point of Concern:
The Phoenix Crime Lab (as are other forensic labs in Arizona) is a wing of the Phoenix Police Department. This raises concerns as to their independence.
The National Academy of Sciences is one of the world’s most respected scientific organizations. They were tasked by the United States Congress to evaluate our country’s crime labs. One of their primary findings was that crime labs should be independent from police departments.
The specific facts of a DUI arrest may dictates who needs to be contacted. However, a good place to start is with the Phoenix Police Department Code Enforcement, Vehicle Impound Unit.
Their phone number is (602) 495-2096.
Your attorney will be given a copy of the police report as part of the discovery process. However, police reports can also be obtained directly from the Police Department.
Here is a link: Phoenix Police Records Department.
- Call the State bar of Arizona to see if they have any issues?
- Find out if they have done a significant amount of DUI jury trials in the city of Phoenix?
- Can the lawyer provide specfic examples of cases and DUI Jury trials they actually won in Phoenix city court?
- Is the attorney aware of the critical problems with the Phoenix Crime Laboratory? Have they litigated any of these issues?
- Ask the lawyers you speak with: who would they hire – if they were charged with a DUI – and looking for a DUI lawyer in Phoenix?