Driving Under the Influence (DUI) is a serious offense in Washington, D.C. A DUI is often people's first arrest and encounter with the criminal justice system. The most important call you can make after your arrest is to an experienced criminal defense attorney. At S.L. England, PLLC, we are prepared to aggressively defend your future while giving you the best legal advice we have.
After Your DUI Arrest
After you are arrested for DUI, you are taken to one of the seven police districts for processing. You will be fingerprinted and provide a breath sample at this time. If you are arrested on a first offense DUI and your Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) is below 0.20 percent, you will likely be cited and released. You will be given a date when you have to appear before a judge for your arraignment.
Washington, D.C. has an implied consent law. If you refuse to submit a breath, blood, or urine sample, you will have your driver's license revoked for one year. If your driver's license was issued in another state, the revocation only applies to your ability to drive in Washington, D.C., but your state's DMV may be notified, and you may face penalties there as well.
If you have an urgent medical need while you are at the police station, the police will either treat you at the station with over-the-counter medications or transport you to a hospital. If you are transported to a hospital, you will likely remain there until you can see the judge for your arraignment, usually the next day.
The police have the option of holding you overnight, depending on the circumstances of your arrest. If they choose to do this, the police will transport you to Central Booking. This is where everyone who was arrested waits until they are transported to the court for arraignment. This is a holding area, not a jail.
Central Booking is located at:
300 Indiana Avenue NW
Washington, D.C. 20001
At your arraignment, the judge will decide if you can be released on bail or if you must remain incarcerated until your trial. If you cannot post bail, if you are a flight risk, or if you have another pending criminal charge, you will be transported to the Central Detention Facility, where you will remain until your trial.
The Central Detention Facility is located at:
1901 D Street SE
Washington, D.C. 20003
Your DUI case will be prosecuted by the Criminal Section of the Public Safety Division of the Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia. Your pre-trial hearings and your trial will be held at the D.C. Superior Court.
The courthouse is located at:
500 Indiana Avenue NW
Washington, D.C. 20001
You are expected to be civil while you are in the courthouse. Disorderly or disruptive behavior is not tolerated at any time, including shouting, arguing, or using aggressive language.
The court does not have a specific dress code, but will remove people from the property who wear clothing that distracts from court proceedings. This includes any gang insignia, exposed undergarments, provocative garments, or sheer clothing. Any clothing with words or pictures that make sexual or drug references or that are obscene or intimidating are also prohibited.
Food is prohibited in all public areas of the courthouse except in the Courts Cafe on the C Street level.
You may not take photographs or make audio recordings of any court proceedings. Electronic devices, including cell phones, tablets, or computers, may not be used in the courtroom.
Smoking tobacco or using electronic smoking devices is permitted outside the courthouse at least 25 feet from an entrance. Using drugs, alcohol, or tobacco inside the courthouse is prohibited at all times.
Weapons, including firearms, knives, tasers, and pepper spray, are not allowed in the courthouse. Anything that can be used as a weapon is also prohibited.
Service animals that meet the criteria set in the Americans with Disabilities Act are welcome.
Any violations of these rules can lead to expulsion from the courthouse, being banned from entering any D.C. court building, or arrest.
Your attorney will notify you of court dates and accompany you to your hearing.
Aggressive, Experienced DUI Representation in Washington, D.C.
If you have been charged with DUI in Washington, D.C., the most important call you can make is to an experienced DUI attorney who can provide you with aggressive representation. A DUI conviction can carry consequences that extend beyond jail time and fines. At S.L. England, PLLC, our attorneys have the courtroom experience you need to effectively present your case to a judge or jury. We can represent you in any level court. Call (202) 489-0720 or contact us online today.