When facing a DUI/DWI charge in Virginia, it is important to act as soon as possible to ensure minimal (if any) consequences. There are many defenses to DUI/DWI in Virginia, it is important to hire a lawyer to go over the facts of the case and find a suitable defense.
Breath/Blood test (Breathalyzer) refusal charges in Virginia are very common. I often see refusal charges paired with DWI’s. This one was charged under Code of Virginia section 18.2-268.3 which states:
“§ 18.2-268.3. Refusal of tests; penalties; procedures.
A. It shall be unlawful for a person who is arrested for a violation of § 18.2-266 (Driving While Intoxicated), 18.2-266.1, or subsection B of § 18.2-272 or of a similar ordinance to unreasonably refuse to have samples of his blood or breath or both blood and breath taken… to determine the alcohol or drug content of his blood…the arresting officer shall advise the person…that (i) a person who operates a motor vehicle upon a highway in the Commonwealth is deemed thereby, as a condition of such operation, to have consented to have samples of his blood and breath taken for chemical tests to determine the alcohol or drug content of his blood, (ii) a finding of unreasonable refusal to consent may be admitted as evidence at a criminal trial, (iii) the unreasonable refusal to do so constitutes grounds for the revocation of the privilege of operating a motor vehicle upon the highways of the Commonwealth…A first violation of this section is a civil offense and subsequent violations are criminal offenses. For a first offense the court shall suspend the defendant’s privilege to drive for a period of one year.”
In short, if you are charged with a breath/blood test (breathalyzer) refusal in Virginia, you are facing a license suspension of a year. It is possible to get refusal charges dropped. Sometimes the defendant is not given clear instructions or the facts of the case may not be sufficient to prove that the breathalyzer was “refused.”
In the case below, the DWI/DUI charge was reduced to a lesser charge of Reckless Driving. With this charge, the client avoided jail time as well as a license suspension. Note: on the picture below, “sentence suspension time” means the amount of time deducted from “sentence” which in this case equals 0 days in jail.
The refused blood/breath test (breathalyzer refusal) charge was dismissed without a license suspension.
If you have been charged with a DUI and/or a Breathalyzer refusal in Virginia, contact me as soon as possible to discuss your case and possible defenses.