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California arrest: guilty of driving under the influence?

Most California sports fans have probably read or heard about the recent arrest of NBC announcer, Al Michaels. Mr. Michaels was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence after it appeared that he avoided a DUI checkpoint by making an illegal u-turn. After he was booked on suspicion of driving under the influence, he was held for approximately five hours before being released.

While driving under the influence is a serious offense, it is important to note that each person who is arrested on suspicions of a crime are to be considered innocent until and only if proven guilty. Mr. Michaels is entitled to a fair court appearance just as any other citizen would be. People can be quick to make a snap judgment in cases that are highly publicized because of the amount of media coverage. However, information published in the media may not always be accurate.

DUI charges can hurt a person's reputation even if the charges ultimately prove to be unfounded. The importance of fair treatment and waiting to assume a person's guilt until after a trial based on evidence can prove to be critical. Too often a person can seem to be guilty before all of the facts are validated.

Any California resident that is facing charges of driving under the influence may find it useful to take a proactive approach. Having an understanding of the laws can help a person receive the best possible outcome and potentially show charges to be unfounded. There are also options available for plea agreements should a defendant decide that this is an appropriate direction to take. Once again, having a strong knowledge of the state laws can be helpful in knowing the best way to proceed with any charges the defendant may face.

Source: ESPN, "Al Michaels of NBC arrested for alleged DUI in California," April 22, 2013

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