SACRAMENTO DUI LAWYER - CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY
MICHAEL REHM - (916) 233-7346
The city of Sacramento and some larger cities in Sacramento County, including Elk Grove, Citrus Heights, and Folsom, have their own police departments. The Sacramento County Sheriff's Department enforces the rules of the road outside of city limits, in unincorporated municipalities, and in cities like Isleton that contract with the county to provide law enforcement.
Those law enforcement agencies and the Highway Patrol make multiple arrests every day for the offense of driving under the influence (DUI). The most recent annual DMV statistics (compiled before the pandemic) reveal that 3,445 drivers in Sacramento County were arrested for DUI. Of those arrests, 834 were made in Sacramento, 278 were in Folsom, and 203 were in Elk Grove.
Drivers who are arrested for DUI in Sacramento County are usually taken to the Sacramento Main Jail for booking. The Main Jail is located at 651 I Street in Sacramento.
Sacramento County DUI Prosecutions
The Sacramento County District Attorney's office reviews DUI arrest reports and decides what charges to file, if any at all. Most drivers are charged with either a misdemeanor or felony DUI charge.
Sacramento County has an unusually high DUI conviction rate. On average, 75% of drivers who are charged with a DUI in California are convicted of a DUI. In Sacramento County, 85% are convicted. Statewide, about 2.2% of DUI arrests end with a felony DUI conviction. In Sacramento County, 4.6% of arrests result in DUI felonies.
Fortunately, a DUI conviction is not inevitable. About 5.4% of DUI arrests in Sacramento County are resolved with a plea to a reduced charge. Most of those pleas are to the “wet” form of reckless driving, a charge that generally has less severe consequences than a DUI conviction.
In another 9.6% of cases, the case is resolved with no conviction. In most of those cases, a DUI defense lawyer has filed motions that result in critical evidence being thrown out or that lead to a dismissal. “Not guilty” verdicts also account for the prosecution's failure to convict.
An aggressive DUI defense often makes the difference between a DUI conviction and a more favorable outcome. Sacramento DUI Attorney Michael Rehm can evaluate the circumstances of a Sacramento County DUI arrest and recommend the most effective defense strategy.
Sacramento County DUI Court Proceedings
A DUI charge filed by the Sacramento County District Attorney's office is heard by the Sacramento County Superior Court. The judges who preside in DUI cases hear cases in the Gordon D. Schaber Courthouse at 720 9th Street in Sacramento, but since the pandemic, the matters have been heard in Department 84 of the Sacramento County Court located at Bicentennial Circle.
The first court appearance is typically an arraignment. It is wise to retain a lawyer before the arraignment. Too many drivers feel pressured to accept a proposed disposition and accompanying punishment at the arraignment. Drivers lose their option to explore potential defenses that might avoid a conviction when they plead guilty at the earliest opportunity.
The median time from arrest to disposition of DUI charges in Sacramento County is 82 days, about a month faster than the statewide median. Drivers are usually well served by resisting the county's attempt to rush cases to disposition. A lawyer who takes the time to review the evidence and build a defense provides the best opportunity to avoid a conviction. For more information on how the court system works in Sacramento, contact Attorney Michael Rehm for a free, confidential consultation at (916) 233-7346.