I hear a lot of similar stories when it comes to clients being arrested for evading law enforcement. Why didn’t you stop? I was scared because my license was suspended or I was scared because I had been drinking are the most common answers that I hear.
One of my favorite stories was several years ago from a client who was riding his motorcycle southbound on the 101 Freeway from Santa Barbara to Long Beach. CHP cars and a helicopter started following him shortly after he entered Ventura County. They clocked him at over 140 miles per hour and it took the cops a bit of time to catch up to my client and ultimately he pulled over. This was not before lengthy pursuit at very high speeds. When my client finally pulled over the cops knocked him off his motorcycle and to the ground and cuffed him up after roughing him up a bit. The cops asked my client where he was going and he told them he was late for work. The client worked on oil rigs and had to catch a boat out of Long Beach to get out to the oil rig. He didn’t want to be late for his boat ride to work so he was riding 140 on the freeway to try and get there on time.
Simply put: These none of these answers justify evading police. Evading law enforcement as a felony carries a mandatory minimum 180 days in county jail and up to three years in prison. This is assuming nobody gets injured or killed in the pursuit. By contrast, even a third offense DUI only carries a mandatory minimum of 120 days. Driving on a suspended license with no priors does not require mandatory jail and with priors is usually 30 days or less.
So, even if you think you may be over the legal limit for alcohol consumption and even if your privilege to drive is suspended, if you see those flashing lights behind you or you hear that siren and see the cops, pull to the right and stop as soon as possible. You will be much better off in the long run than if you try to evade the police.
By the way, my client on the motorcycle missed work that day because he was arrested. He was taken to jail and charged with felony evading along with resisting arrest in Ventura County. After a lengthy preliminary hearing and ultimately setting the case for trial I got him a misdemeanor and 10 days of work release (Caltrans).
If you or someone you know has been arrested for evading police, DUI, driving on a suspended license or any other criminal charge call a lawyer with the ability and experience to get the job done right, call me:
Attorney Jeffrey Vallens (818) 783-5700 or (888) 764-4340 or
Email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org