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Here is a partial list of type of criminal charges that I handle

  • Cases Involving Driving Under the Influence (DUI) of Alcohol and/or Drugs
  • Driving while having a blood alcohol content of .08% or more of alcohol
  • DMV License Suspension Hearings
  • Domestic Violence Cases
  • Cases Involving the Possession, Use, and Transportation of Controlled Substances (Drugs)
  • Cases Involving Being Under the Influence of Controlled Substances (Drugs)
  • Probation Violation Cases
  • Criminal Threat Cases
  • Assault and Battery Cases
  • Child Abuse and Neglect Cases
  • Theft (Including Fraud and Embezzlement) Cases
  • Residential and Commercial Burglary Cases

Service Areas

I serve clients located in the County of Santa Cruz, which include the communities of:

  • Santa Cruz
  • Watsonville
  • Scotts Valley
  • Capitola
  • Soquel
  • Aptos
  • Boulder Creek
  • Ben Lomond
  • Felton
  • Davenport
  • Freedom
  • Corralitos

More About DUI Law

In California, it is illegal to drive a vehicle if your ability to be safe and prudent is impaired by the use of alcohol or drugs, including prescription medication. This is sometimes erroneously referred to as “drunk driving.” It is also illegal to drive if you have .08% or more of alcohol in your blood system.

Once you are legally arrested (probable cause) you are required under California’s “implied consent” law to take either a breath or a blood test (even if you did a field breath test prior to being arrested). You also have the right to “refuse’ to take either of these tests, however, your license will be suspended by the DMV, and you will suffer greater consequences in your criminal case in court.

The pre-arrest breath test is optional, and I recommend that you decline to take this test. However, I do not recommend refusing to take or complete a post-arrest chemical test (breath or blood). Additionally, I would advise one to decline to perform the field sobriety tests (FST’s).

Frequently Asked Questions During DUI Case Evaluation

DUI cases are not always open and shut situations because they usually involve very technical and complex legal issues. Criminal defense attorneys who specialize in DUI cases ask the following questions to find potential legal and scientific issues with the charges against you.

  • Did the officer have “probable cause” to arrest the suspect for DUI?
  • Did the police observe enough “objective symptoms” of intoxication to conduct a DUI investigation?
  • Did the officer administer the field sobriety tests (FSTs) or balance and coordination tests properly to determine whether to arrest the suspect for DUI?
  • Was the in-field breath test administered in the right manner and was the machine used working properly?
  • Was the additional blood or breath chemical test conducted according to required procedures in the acquisition, handling, and analysis of the samples?
  • Was the equipment used to analyze test samples working properly and maintained in accordance with regulations?
  • Were the test samples and results analyzed and reported according to state regulations by a licensed laboratory and in a scientifically approved manner?
  • Was the suspect’s blood-alcohol level rising or falling at the time of driving and at the time of the chemical test?
  • Were there any physiological reasons, such as gastroesophageal reflux disease, residual mouth alcohol, heartburn, and acid reflux disease, that could cause a false result on the breath machine?
  • Where you properly admonished about your choices under the ‘Implied Consent Law'?

California DUI Fines and Penalties

First DUI Conviction

  • 96 Hours to 6 Months of Jail Time
  • Fine of Approximately $2,500
  • Six-Month License Suspension
  • Required Completion of a Driving Under the Influence Program
  • Potential Order to Install an Ignition Interlock Device (IID)
  • Required California SR22 Insurance for a Restricted License

Second DUI Conviction (Within 10 Years of Previous Conviction)

  • 90 Days to 1 Year of Jail Time
  • Fine of Approximately $3,000
  • Two-Year License Suspension (Arrestees With an IID May Apply for a Restricted Driver License)
  • Required Completion of a Driving Under the Influence Program
  • California SR22 Certificate Required for Restricted License

Evidence Used by the Prosecution to Prove DUI Charges

  • How You Drove the Vehicle
  • Objective Symptoms of Intoxication
  • Your Performance During the Field Sobriety Tests
  • Breath or Blood Chemical Test Results

The most critical evidence, other than the reasons for stopping the driver, is the result of the breath or blood test. A person is presumed to be under the influence (DUI) if their blood-alcohol level is .08% or greater. This, however, is a rebuttal presumption, and reasonable doubt that one is guilty may exist.


DUI Lawyer Consultation

Many DUI cases are subject to plea negotiations with the prosecution which may result in dispositions for lesser offenses or lesser penalties. Arrestees should consult with a DUI lawyer before entering a guilty or no-contest plea.

DUI is a serious offense, so you will need a defense attorney who will protect your rights. Contact Me to Schedule a Free DUI Consultation.

More About Criminal Law

Assault and Battery Crimes

Assault is an act of violence against another individual. While the specific meaning of assault varies among countries, it can refer to any act that causes another to fear immediate and personal violence. In a more limited sense, it can also mean a threat of violence caused by an immediate show of force.

Battery in some jurisdictions is still defined more broadly as any intentional physical contact with another person without their consent.

Additionally, there are jurisdictions that have incorporated the definition of civil assault into the definition of the crime. This makes it a criminal assault to intentionally place another person in “fear” of harmful or offensive contact. Fear, in this context, only refers to their awareness of the violent action rather than a particular emotional state.

Legal Counsel for Assault and Battery Charges

Being charged with an assault or battery are serious matters, so you will need an attorney to fight for your rights. Contact me today for a free case evaluation.


Types of Assaults

  • Simple Assault: This is a misdemeanor and is defined as an unlawful attempt, coupled with a present ability, to violently injure another person. No injury or contact needs to take place for this offense to occur.
  • Simple Battery: Is defined as any willful and unlawful use of force or violence on another person.
  • Assault With a Deadly Weapon Other Than a Firearm: This is considered a felony in California. It is punishable by up to four years in state prison and fines up to $10,000.
  • Assault With a Firearm: Unlike the previous type of assault, this does not have to be committed in a manner likely to produce bodily harm. Merely possessing a firearm while committing assault is enough to elevate the assailant’s potential sentence.

Domestic Violence

Domestic violence can also be referred to as abuse, spousal abuse, family violence, or intimate partner violence (IPV). This crime can be broadly defined as a pattern of abusive behaviors by one or both partners in an intimate relationship. This can involve spouses, people who are dating, family members, friends, or cohabitating partners.

Instances of domestic violence can come in different forms, such as:

  • Aggression - This can include hitting, kicking, biting, shoving, restraining, slapping, throwing objects, or the mere threat of aggression.
  • Sexual Abuse
  • Emotional Abuse
  • Controlling or Domineering Behavior
  • Intimidation
  • Stalking
  • Passive or Covert Abuse – An example of this is neglect.
  • Economic Deprivation

Alcohol consumption and mental illness can be comorbid with abuse and add challenges when present alongside patterns of abuse.

Being Accused of Domestic Violence

I am aware of how difficult, and often emotional, being accused of this crime can be. I fully understand the great emotional impact that domestic violence and the long-term repercussions associated with a criminal record have on families and loved ones.

Domestic Violence Attorney Consultation

If you have been accused of domestic violence you can count on me to fight for your legal rights. Call my office today to schedule a free consultation.

Drug Offenses

Have you been charged with a drug offense? If so, then you already know that you are possibly facing jail time. Additionally, the punishment may include financial penalties, the suspension of your driver’s license, forfeiture of property, and more.

Drug crimes can include:

  • Drug Trafficking
  • Drug Distribution
  • Possession
  • Possession with Intent to Distribute (Sales)
  • Transportation
  • Being Under The Influence

Being Accused of Drug Crimes

You need to talk to an experience defense attorney if you want to learn about your drug charges and the possible ways you can fight them. I will represent you in the same manner I would like to be represented.

As a former prosecutor and judge, I know how the system works and how to help you. Call my office today and schedule a free consultation to discuss your case.


Theft Offenses

Theft is defined as the illegal taking of another person’s property without their consent. It is also an informal term for some property crimes, such as burglary, embezzlement, credit card fraud, larceny, looting, robbery, shoplifting, fraud, and even criminal conversion.

Consult Me to Learn More About Your Theft Offense

Are you currently facing theft charges? If so, I can provide expert criminal defense services at every stage.

Call my office today and schedule a free consultation to discuss your legal rights.

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