How Not to Handle Your DUI Arrest

This off-duty officer let her emotions the better of her during her recent DUI arrest:

Video logs belligerent cop’s DWI arrest:

As it happens, the officer was already on a paid suspension on alcohol-related charges.

Should you find yourself in similar circumstances, follow your mom’s advice,

“If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.”

If you need advice concerning a DUI or Reckless Driving charge and would like a free consultation, call The Gordon Law Firm at 703.218.8416.

MADD encourages Virginia DUI charges to have severe punishments

Advocacy group,  Mothers Against Drunk Driving named Virginia as one of many states taking strong steps to prevent drunk driving in the organization’s recent Five Year Anniversary Report on the elimination of drunk driving nationwide.

MADD has done some good things to prevent teen drinking and driving.  However, these awards encourage Virginia legislators to make DUI punishments more severe and to try to eliminate or restrict due process rights of drivers.  If you have been accused of DUI, DWI, or drunk driving in Fairfax, Prince William, or Loudoun County, please contact us for a free consultation with one of our DUI lawyers at 703.218.8416.

M.A.D.D. gave Virginia a four out of five star DUI prevention rating based on an evaluation of state-by-state anti-drunk driving efforts that included:

  • Conducting Sobriety Checkpoints – Serving as a general deterrent to driving while intoxicated.
  • Increasing Penalties for DUI Child Endangerment -Entailing stiffer penalties like making drunk driving a felony when children are present in the vehicle.
  • Use of Administrative License Revocation – This allows officers to confiscate a driver’s license at the time of an alleged DUI offense.
  • Participating in “No refusal” Weekends – In which drivers are not allowed to decline blood alcohol content tests at the time of a suspected DUI offense.
  • Requiring Ignition Interlocks for All DUI Offenders – Offenders must submit to a built-in breathalyzer to start their vehicle.

States aggressively implementing all of these drunk driving prevention measures received five star ratings from the advocacy group.

Virginia fell short of the full five star rating because currently the commonwealth requires only limited use of vehicle interlock systems for DUI offenders.  Legislation to expand Virginia’s use of such systems has been proposed in the VA House of Delegates for four years running, but has not yet been passed into law.  M.A.D.D.’s northern Virginia chapter offers details on the current Virginia DUI vehicle interlock requirements for download on their website.

For further information on the M.A.D.D. Five Year Report, check out their interactive map with ratings information for every state:

M.A.D.D. Five Year Report - Interactive Map

Click to Visit the M.A.D.D. Interactive Map

If you need advice concerning a DUI or Reckless Driving Charge and you would like a free consultation, call The Gordon Law Firm at 703-218-8416.


DUI and Reckless Driving charges increase over Thanksgiving weekend

After the Thanksgiving weekend in 2010, the number of people who died on the state’s roads during the Thanksgiving holiday decreased sharply while DUI arrests increased.  Nine people died in 922 crashes from early Wednesday through midnight Sunday in 2010, down from 16 deaths in 2009, according to Virginia State Police.  At least one of the weekend’s fatal crashes involved alcohol. Troopers charged 175 with driving under the influence of alcohol, up from 132 in 2009.

The Virginia State Police superintendent said drivers were warned ahead of the 2010 weekend that the agency would have 75 percent of its uniformed personnel looking for impaired drivers.

“The fact that 175 people were still willing to risk killing themselves and others on Virginia’s highways is more than disturbing – it’s completely unacceptable,” State Police Superintendent Flaherty said. “Virginians must take proactive and responsible action this holiday season to not let themselves, their family, their co-workers or their friends drink and drive.”

Troopers in 2010 wrote 10,116 speeding tickets and cited 2,780 with reckless driving. More than 830 got tickets for failing to buckle their seat belts and 253 were cited for failing to properly restrain children. 

This article is a summarization of one written by Cindy Clayton on December 1, 2010 for the Virginian Pilot.

If you need advice concerning a DUI or Reckless Driving charge and you would like a free consultation, call The Gordon Law Firm at 703.218.8416

Prince William DUI arrest leads to charges of counterfeiting by Secret Service

In Prince William County, Virginia, a DUI arrest turned into a counterfeit currency bust when police discovered that the two men being arrested for DUI in Prince William County had three odd-looking $100 bills in their possession.

According to the Washington Post, police nabbed the two men on what they thought was a routine suspicion of drunk driving stop. When the police officer searched the men, though, he found several $100 bills that didn’t look quite right. What tipped him off was a message written next to Benjamin Franklin’s head that read “BILLETE DE LA SUERTE ALASITAS.” According to the Washington Post, it denotes the bill as a good luck ticket for the festival of Alasitas, which is a festival held every year in Peru and Bolivia. At the festivals, bills of this kind are handed out widely in casinos and elsewhere.

The officer determined that the bills were counterfeit, and police investigated the strange bills further. They found that the driver’s friend had even more of the bills, and when they searched his house they found 59 more.  According to the U.S. Secret Service, these bills have appeared in the Federal Reserve Bank 125 times. In other words, someone has accepted this type of bill as real currency at least 125 times over the years.

Federal prosecutors were not interested in pursuing the case of the drunk drivers who were caught with counterfeit cash, so instead the Prince William County Commonwealth Attorney will handle the case. County police were not aware of the bills actually being passed as real anywhere.  The driver was charged with drunk driving in Prince William County, refusal to take a Breathalyzer test, possession of fictitious bank notes and possession of a false work card. The other man, Ronald Virto, was charged with possessing more than ten fictitious bank notes, passing fictitious bank notes, and drunk driving charges.

Many times DUI arrests lead to additional charges. This appears to be one of those cases, when one offense clues police onto another and a DUI suspect must answer additional charges, too.

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