DUI by Ages 60 or Older in Los Angeles
In recent years, drivers who are 60 and older have been committing an increasingly larger proportion of Los Angeles driving under the influence offenses than ever before. This is likely due to a number of reasons, including the fact that people now live longer lives than ever before and also because many drivers in this age group are on medications that can adversely affect their ability to drive safely. Through all stages of the DUI process, there may be issues unique to drivers who are 60 or older.Decline in Driving Abilities After 60
Drivers in this age group tend to experience a decline in their driving abilities as they get older. This can result in more frequent violations of traffic laws, such as running stop signs or maintaining one’s position within a lane of traffic. If an officer observes a driver commit any traffic violation, that officer would be justified in performing a traffic stop. Once stopped, the officer will speak with the driver and if he or she suspects that the driver is under the influence, a more thorough DUI investigation will be conducted.
Drivers who are over the age of 60 may suffer from physical conditions or impairments that would affect their ability to perform effectively on the field sobriety tests. These tests have been developed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (“NHTSA”) to determine whether a driver may be impaired. Many of the tests evaluate a driver’s physical agility and balance. Any preexisting physical impairment or condition can affect a driver’s performance on the field sobriety tests. In many cases, a defendant’s performance on the field sobriety tests will be used as evidence of the driver’s level of intoxication. It may be necessary for a defense attorney to show how a poor performance on the field sobriety tests was actually caused by a driver’s preexisting physical condition and not intoxication.Driving Under the Influence of Prescription Medications
In addition, drivers who are 60 and older may be subject to charges of driving under the influence of drugs in violation of California Vehicle Code Section 23152(e)VC or driving under the combined influence of alcohol and drugs in violation of California Vehicle Code Section 23152(f) VC. While many people think of street drugs or party drugs when thinking about DUI drug offenses, a person can be convicted of driving under the influence if certain prescription medications are discovered in their system. Many drivers who are over the age of 60 may be taking several medications that can affect their ability to safely operate a motor vehicle. In addition, there are instances where the driver mixes alcohol and prescription drugs. Even if the driver’s blood alcohol content is found to be below 0.08 percent, he or she could still be charged with a DUI offense. The fact that the driver had a valid prescription for the drug in question would not preclude him or her from being charged with a DUI offense.
It is imperative for drivers over the age of 60 who have been charged with driving under the influence to retain the services of a skilled Los Angeles DUI Attorney. For drivers who have no criminal record and whose BAC was relatively low, an effective attorney may be able to convince the prosecutor to agree to a reduced DUI charge. In addition, there may be issues with physical conditions and prescription medication that may need to be presented to the court. Sometimes a drug will be present in a defendant’s blood after its intoxicating effect has worn off. It may be necessary to bring in an expert to explain how a driver was not under the influence of a drug that was found in trace amounts in the defendant’s blood.Driving Under the Influence of Prescription Medications
If you or a loved one have been charged with driving under the influence, it is important that you consult with a Los Angeles DUI Attorney as soon as possible. As a former Deputy District Attorney with over 14 years of prosecutorial experience, Attorney Michael Kraut is highly effective at fighting DUI cases on behalf of clients of all ages. Mr. Kraut works hard to ensure his clients receive the best representation possible.Driving Under the Influence of Prescription Medications >
For more information about DUI offenses for those who are 60 and older, and to schedule your free consultation, contact Michael Kraut at the Kraut Law Group located at 6255 Sunset Boulevard, Suite 1520, Los Angeles, CA 90028. Mr. Kraut can be reached 24/7 at 888-334-6344 or 323-464-6453.