Walnut Creek DUI Lawyer
The Law Offices of Derek Ewin: Handling Criminal & DUI Cases in Contra Costa, Alameda, and Los Angeles Counties
CALL NOW FOR A FREE CASE EVALUATION
201 N. Civic Dr.
Walnut Creek, CA 94596
If you have been arrested for Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol or Drugs (DUI), you could face a variety of serious penalties - including jail time and the suspension or revocation of your driver's license. The severity of these penalties can depend on your blood alcohol level, your age, your prior record, whether you were involved in an accident, if you had minors in the car at the time and your manner of driving at the time of the arrest. In addition, the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) will seek to suspend or revoke your driver's license irrespective of the result in criminal court. Some of these rights are time sensitive and require setting a hearing within ten (10) days of your arrest. Derek Ewin has literally handled hundreds of these types of cases. An experienced attorney, like Mr. Ewin, can help you navigate through the courts and DMV and greatly increase your likelihood of getting the best possible outcome.
Derek Ewin - Attorney Overview
Derek Ewin has a wealth of DUI and Criminal Law experience including more than thirteen years in County Prosecutors' Offices. Eleven of those years Mr. Ewin worked as a Deputy District Attorney in Contra Costa County. As a Deputy DA, Mr. Ewin prosecuted thousands of cases, including but not limited to: Robbery, Homicide, Drunk Driving/DUI, Possession, Possession for Sale and Sale of Illegal Drugs, Three Strikes, Theft, Burglary, Auto Theft, Domestic Violence, Assault with Deadly Weapon, Illegal Firearms, Vandalism, Sex Crimes, Stalking, Gang cases, Arson and Drive By Shootings. At the DA's Office, Mr. Ewin worked in several divisions including Misdemeanors, Felony Trial Team, Calendar, Juvenile, Felony Filing, Domestic Violence/Sexual Assault, Preliminary Hearings and Homicide/Gangs. As a Criminal Defense Attorney, Mr. Ewin has handled numerous cases in the Greater San Francisco Bay Area. He has successfully defended misdemeanor, felony and drunk driving cases.
Mr. Ewin's extensive experience includes Jury Trials, Court Trials, Preliminary Hearings, Motions to Suppress, Motions to Dismiss, Discovery Motions, Pre-trial Negotiations, Plea Bargaining, Sentencing Hearings, Probation Violation Hearings, Investigations, Mental Defenses, Victim Representation, DMV License Suspension Hearings and Post Conviction Reductions and Dismissals. He has also lectured in criminal law, legal updates and constitutional law to various local police agencies. In law school, Mr. Ewin focused on Criminal Law and Trial Practice. He tutored legal writing and competed in the National Moot Court competition.
Mr. Ewin has a reputation of integrity, honesty and skill with local prosecutors, defense attorneys, judges and court staff. Mr. Ewin works tirelessly to help his clients get their lives back in order and to get them free of the Criminal Justice System. Clients and Former Clients continually call and write to tell Mr. Ewin how his representation of them has changed their lives for the better.
Mr. Ewin was born and raised in the East Bay, where he continues to reside with his family. He is an avid dirt bike rider, wake-boarder, shooter and outdoorsman. He is also involved as a teacher at his local church.
University of California at Los Angeles
B.A. in Political Science
King Hall School of Law
University of California at Davis
Yolo County District Attorney's Office
Certified Law Clerk
November 1993-January 1994
Ventura County District Attorney's Office
Contra Costa County District Attorney's Office
Deputy District Attorney
2005 - Present
Law Office of Derek R. Ewin
California State Bar - 1993
California Broker's License - 2005
California State Bar Association
Contra Costa County Bar Association
National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
California DUI Law Highlights: BAC Levels and Implied Consent (Table 1)
"Per Se" BAC Level
"Zero Tolerance" BAC Level
Enhanced Penalty BAC Level
"Implied Consent" Law
"Per Se" Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) Level
As of August 2005, all states have DUI laws that deem "per se intoxicated" any driver with a blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) at or above .08 percent. This means that drivers with a BAC at or above .08 are intoxicated in the eyes of the law, and no additional proof of driving impairment is necessary.
"Zero Tolerance" Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) Level
All states carry "zero tolerance" laws that target drivers under the legal drinking age. These laws penalize persons under 21 for operating a vehicle with any trace of alcohol in their systems (a BAC above 0.0), or with negligible BAC levels such as .01 or .02 percent.
"Enhanced Penalty" Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) Level
Many states impose harsher penalties on DUI offenders with a particularly high BAC at the time of the offense, typically .15 to .20 percent. DUI offenders with a BAC at or above their state's enhanced penalty standards will likely face additional jail time, harsher fines, and more severe driver's license sanctions.
"Implied Consent" Laws
"Implied consent" laws require vehicle drivers to submit to some form of chemical test, such as breath, blood, or urine testing, if suspected of DUI. If a driver refuses to submit to such testing, implied consent laws carry penalties such as mandatory suspension of a driver's license, usually for six months to a year.
California DUI Law Highlights: Selected Penalties (Table 2)
Administrative License Suspension/Revocation (1st/2nd/3rd Offense)
Mandatory Alcohol Education and Treatment/Assessment
Vehicle Confiscation Possible?
Ignition Interlock Device Possible?
4m/ 2y/ 3y
Both (Education if under 21)
Note: Persons arrested for DUI will be subject to additional criminal law penalties not addressed here -- including jail time, fines, and community service. Such criminal penalties are typically more discretionary than those identified in this chart, and are therefore more difficult to accurately predict. Generally speaking, first-time DUI offenders can expect to incur a fine, and face the possibility of jail time. Repeat DUI offenders will incur harsher fines, and will almost certainly be sentenced to a number of days in jail. Penalties will be harsher still if the DUI offender was involved in an accident in which someone else was injured or killed.
Administrative License Suspension/Revocation
The Administrative License Suspension/Revocation penalties indicated here refer to minimum mandatory penalties imposed on drivers whose BAC is above the state limit for intoxication, or drivers who refuse to submit to BAC testing. Administrative suspension or revocation of a driver's license is usually carried out by a state agency (such as a Department of Motor Vehicles), distinct from any criminal court penalties. Most states impose harsher penalties for second or third DUI offenses, typically defined as those that occur within five years of a prior DUI offense.
Note: the penalties identified here do not include variations for DUI offenders operating commercial vehicles, or drivers who have violated "zero tolerance" and "enhanced penalty" DUI laws (see Table 1). Most states recognize different sanctions for these types of DUI offenses.
Mandatory Alcohol Education and Assessment/Treatment
Alcohol education and treatment/assessment penalties for DUI offenders can include mandatory attendance at DUI prevention programs, and assessment of potential alcohol dependency problems. Such programs are often made "conditions" of a suspended sentence or probation, meaning that a DUI offender can avoid additional jail time and payment of additional fines if he or she completes participation in the program. This chart indicates each state's utilization of alcohol education and treatment/assessment programs.
Vehicle confiscation penalties allow a motor vehicle department or law enforcement agency to seize a DUI offender's vehicle, either permanently or for a set period of time. Such penalties typically apply only to repeat DUI offenders, and often the return of the vehicle requires payment of fines and significant administrative costs. This chart indicates each state's utilization of vehicle confiscation as a penalty for DUI.
A vehicle ignition interlock breath-testing device measures a vehicle operator's BAC, and will prevent operation of the vehicle if more than a minimal amount of alcohol is detected. DUI offenders will usually be required to pay the costs of installation, rental, and maintenance of an ignition interlock device. This chart indicates each state's utilization of ignition interlock devices as a penalty for DUI.
COMMONLY ASKED QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
- TYPE OF CASES OUR FIRM HANDLES
I handle many types of cases to bench and jury trials including Adult DUI, Criminal, Misdemeanor and Felony cases and Juvenile DUI, Criminal, Misdemeanor, Felony Cases.
- WE THINK YOU SHOULD HIRE US IF:
You want a lawyer who will personally handle your file and will be available for consultation weekdays, evenings and weekends. I will fairly evaluate your case and determine the most favorable course. I will not hesitate to go to trial on your case if it is in your best interest. That decision, however, will ultimately be yours.
- OUR FIRM IS NOT RIGHT FOR YOU IF:
You are looking for a lawyer who will only tell you what you want to hear. I will work with you to honestly assess the facts of the case and give you the best advice possible.
- IF YOU WANT TO TELL OUR LAW FIRM ABOUT YOUR SITUATION YOU SHOULD:
I personally communicate with you whenever possible. If I am in Court when you call, you can leave a message. I personally guarantee you will hear back from me in 24-hours, or less - most often, much less. My office phone is (925) 262-8406.
- THE TYPICAL COST TO GET US TO START WORKING ON YOUR CASE IS:
The cost varies depending on the allegation and facts of the case. A fee will be quoted at our initial consultation.
- OUR CLIENTS WILL TELL YOU THAT:
My level of experience, knowledge of the law, and personal familiarity with the judges, prosecutors, and system is a great advantage. In addition my personal and regular contact with clients, my availability and my involvement with every aspect of the case bring the most favorable results.
- OUR PHILOSOPHY ON HOW WE APPROACH OUR CASES IS:
Depending on the charges I like to find out as much as I can about the facts of the case and gather as much information about you as possible. Then we can discuss our options. The more information I have, the better our chances of getting a favorable result.
- IF YOU WANT TO LEARN MORE ABOUT OUR FIRM YOU SHOULD:
Call me at (925) 262-8406. During our free initial consultation I will answer any questions you have.
Do You Need a Lawyer?
Every state has some sort of "drunk driving" statute. The term "drunk driving" is in quotes because none of these laws require that you be "drunk" or "intoxicated" to be guilty. All that is required is that your ability to operate a vehicle has been impaired to any extent at all or that your Blood alcohol level exceeds the state limit (which is now .08% in all states). Some states call it DWI (Driving While Intoxicated), but it refers to the same offense. The consequences of differ drastically from state to state and are influenced by your age, blood alcohol limit (BAC), whether you have been arrested for in the past, and whether you caused injury or death during the .
A Lawyer can help...
Assess your legal situation
An experienced Defense lawyer can help you understand what you are up against and the fines you may be required to pay. A lawyer mostly deals with matters and knows the process inside and out – including options that a public defender may not tell you.
Explain the consequences
The consequences of a vary greatly from state to state and a lawyer will be able to explain how those consequences in your state apply to you such as (1) harsher punishments for those arrested with BAC limits over .08, (2) special laws for underage drivers arrested for , (3) possible community service or plea bargaining, (4) overlapping jurisdiction of Courts and your state's motor vehicle licensing department to suspend or revoke your license, and (5) contingent license programs that allow you to use your vehicle to get to and from work.
Manage the process
Dealing with the motor vehicle department can be frustrating and time consuming. A Lawyer can manage the process for you by completing the required forms; making phone calls; scheduling and/or representing you at a Motor Vehicle Department suspension hearing, and making other necessary arrangements.
Represent you in court
An experienced Lawyer knows the ins and outs of the courtroom and may be able to obtain a lesser sentence for you if your situation and state law allows for it.
Don't know if a Lawyer is right for you? Here are some general guidelines:
Definitely hire a Lawyer if you already have several 's and receive another; or if your arrest was the result of an accident or if anyone was injured; or if you are a professional driver whose livelihood depends on keeping your license.
Seriously consider hiring a Lawyer if you've been arrested for a second (in the same or another state) or were arrested with a BAC limit over double the legal limit as harsher penalties may apply.
You might want to hire a Lawyer if you don't understand your rights or laws, what you need to do, or the consequences you face. You also might want legal representation if you are in a profession (or plan to be) that requires bonding or in which any criminal conviction might prevent you from getting or keeping a professional license. If you don't know the requirements, then you need expert advice before handling the case yourself.