Improper Use Of Time
Nothing bothers us more profoundly than the artificial “rush” the Utah DUI prosecution tends to put on a criminal case, if only because such a severe charge should be explained to the last degree. While we fully understand the need of prosecutors to clear the criminal docket, it is a personal pet peeve of ours that almost all justice courts have plenty of “waiver of rights” (guilty plea) forms, but not a single Utah court offers defendant’s the chance to meet with defense attorneys or permits defense attorneys to place published information in the hands of defendants. Courts are required to play a few minutes of video, but even that doesn’t recommend that every defendant see a defense lawyer. However, the silver lining is that defendants are guaranteed TWO separate trials, one in Justice Court and another in Distirct Court, and the effect of this process is, on the whole, to award the benefit of time to the defendant.
One of the main reasons for hiring a Utah DUI Lawyer besides gaining the advantage of their expertise, proper case review, and mitigating sentencing if found guilty, is that the rate at which the case is prosecuted will slow considerably. This can have the following beneficial effects: (1) due to high turnover in the police force, a case will sometimes settle due to an officer’s retirement, suspension or absence (in one case the police officer received a DUI the week after the trial – we appealed); (2) cases get occasionally lost and may be dismissed for lack of timely prosecution or speedy trial; (3) police memories may fade (understandably); (4) appellate law affecting the admissibility of evidence (such as the breath or blood result) may change favorably with time; (5) fines and/or penalties such as a costly interlock device) and increased insurance premiums remain unpaid, and do not garner interest during the interim. Simply put, time favors the defendant and having legal counsel buys time (appropriately of course, as it would be unethical to unnecessarily prolonge a case).
Most of all, time buys education, peace of mind, and understanding of the process; as we say, you can always plead guilty at any time, but you never undo your guilty plea. Think about it; how can waiting possibly hurt you? We see no problem with defendants pleading guilty if they are convinced of their guilt, but we would argue that they should be fully informed prior to considering this life changing action. There is no way for a defendant to become fully informed without reading extensively on the subject and consulting with a Utah defense attorney about their case.