Flagstaff DUI and Criminal Defense Attorney
Steven Scharboneau is a Flagstaff DUI attorney and Criminal Defense Attorney. Steven graduated cum laude from the University of Arizona earning a bachelor’s degree in political science with an emphasis in law and public policy. Knowing that he always wanted to be a lawyer practicing as a criminal defense attorney, he then earned his Juris Doctorate degree from ASU Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law.
Steven is a Flagstaff trial attorney who primarily practices in the area of criminal defense and is extremely passionate about protecting the rights of others. Protecting individuals from the government’s intrusion of their constitutional rights is the reason he became a Flagstaff criminal defense attorney. His passion and deep knowledge of the criminal justice system make him an extremely effective advocate for his clients and makes him your choice for your Flagstaff DUI and Criminal Defense Attorney.
Dealing with DUI charges in Flagstaff
DUI laws in Arizona can be complicated and there are many nuances to defending a Flagstaff DUI case. Every part of any Flagstaff DUI case must be looked at critically. This is true from the time that you are pulled over by police, to the time you field tested on the roadside, to the blood or breath testing, to the time of release. Each of these phases of a Flagstaff DUI investigation hold an abundance of room for error, and law enforcement officers often do not perform Flagstaff DUI investigations like they are trained to—or even as they are required to by law.
Some of the different types of Flagstaff DUIs are:
- Driving while impaired to the slightest degree (commonly referred to as a regular DUI)
- Driving with drugs or a metabolite of drugs in your blood stream (commonly referred to as a drug DUI)
- Driving with a BAC at above a .08 (commonly referred to as a regular DUI)
- Driving with a BAC at or above a .15 (commonly referred to as an extreme DUI)
- Driving with a BAC at or above a .20 (commonly referred to as a super extreme DUI)
- Felony DUI or Aggravated DUI
Each of these categories of DUIs have different mandatory minimum penalties, including jail time, fines and fees, interlock requirements, drug or alcohol screening and treatment, as well as other consequences. That said, no one is guaranteed the minimum penalties and they may be aggravated by circumstances such as if a collision was involved or if you have prior DUI convictions.
Having a Flagstaff DUI attorney and criminal defense attorney that has the training and experience to thoroughly investigate the investigation done by law enforcement is critical in fighting for the best outcome for you and your case.
Flagstaff criminal defense attorney Steven Scharboneau is experienced in handling these cases and can represent you. If you have more questions about specific details regarding the process of a DUI case, please call or text Flagstaff attorney Steven Scharboneau at (480) 363-0090 anytime.
Dealing With Misdemeanor Charges In Flagstaff
Misdemeanor charges in Flagstaff, like other misdemeanor charges in Arizona, are more serious than a petty offense but less serious than felony charges. Some examples of Flagstaff misdemeanors are Flagstaff domestic violence charges, assault, criminal damage, disorderly conduct in Flagstaff, theft, and Flagstaff DUI charges as discussed above.
The maximum penalties for Flagstaff misdemeanor charges are as follows:
Class 1 Misdemeanor
- 6 months jail, ARS 13-707(1).
- $2500 (plus an 83% surcharge), ARS 13-802(A).
- 3 years of probation, ARS 13-902(5).
Class 2 Misdemeanor
- 4 months jail, ARS 13-707(2).
- $750 (plus an 83% surcharge), ARS 13-802(B).
- 2 years of probation, ARS 13-902(6).
Class 3 Misdemeanor
- 1 month jail, ARS 13-707(3).
- $500 (plus 83% surcharge), ARS 13-802(C).
- 1 year of probation, ARS 13-902(7).
However, having a Flagstaff DUI attorney and criminal defense attorney like Steven Scharboneau working your case can help move your case toward decreased penalties, decreased charges and sometimes even dismissal of charges. If you have more questions about misdemeanor charges in Flagstaff, call or text Steven Scharboneau 24/7 and he will answer your questions free of charge–(480) 363-0090. Or, you can submit an online inquiry by clicking here.
Dealing With Felony Charges In Flagstaff
Dealing with a Flagstaff felony can have serious consequences and can be incredibly stressful and scary for those being charged and their families. Flagstaff felony charges vary in severity and a labeled from class 1 to class 6, a class 1 felony being the most serious. Some examples of Flagstaff felony charges are aggravated assault, aggravated DUI, armed robbery, arson, burglary, Flagstaff disorderly conduct, forgery, prohibited possessor or misconduct involving weapons charges in Flagstaff, drug possession and sales among other charges.
Class 1 Felony
Class 1 felonies are the most severe type of criminal offense in the state. There are only 2 crimes that are class 1 felonies, and both are homicides: First-degree murder and second-degree murder. Convictions for first-degree murder are punishable with fines and either a life jail sentence or the death penalty. Convictions for second-degree murder carry jail sentences.
Class 2 Felony
Some examples of class 2 felonies are arson, manslaughter, drive by shooting and sexual assault. Class 2 felonies in Arizona carry a sentence of 3 to 12.5 years in prison for a first offense. For most first time offenses, probation is available unless a dangerous designation is sought by the prosecution–which can be relatively common for this level of offense.
Class 3 Felony
Some examples of class 3 felonies are theft, aggravated assault, stalking, and fraud. Class 3 felonies in Arizona carry a sentence of 2 to 8.75 years in prison for a first offense. For most first time offenses, probation is available unless a dangerous designation is sought by the prosecution.
Class 4 Felony
Some examples of class 4 felonies are aggravated DUI, aggravated assault, robbery, burglary, and misconduct involving a weapon (prohibited possessor). Class 4 felonies in Arizona carry a sentence of 1 to 3.75 years in prison for a first offense. For most first time offenses, probation is available unless a dangerous designation is sought by the prosecution.
Class 5 Felony
Some examples of class 5 felonies are animal abuse, rioting, criminal damage, and aggravated assault. Class 5 felonies in Arizona carry a sentence of .5 to 2.5 years in prison for a first offense. For most first time offenses, probation is available unless a dangerous designation is sought by the prosecution.
Class 6 Felony
Some examples of class 6 felonies are aggravated DUI, possession of drugs, possession of drug paraphernalia, disorderly conduct and shoplifting. Class 6 felonies in Arizona carry a sentence of .33 to 2 years in prison for a first offense. For most first time offenses, probation is available unless a dangerous designation is sought by the prosecution.
Class 6 Undesignated Felony
In Arizona, there are two types of class 6 felonies, a class 6 “designated” felony and a class 6 “undesignated” felony. A class 6 designated felony the type of felony discussed above, there is nothing special about it. However, a class 6 undesignated felony is a felony that, upon completion of probation and any other terms of sentencing, can be turned into a misdemeanor conviction.
There are many nuances to the way an Arizona class 6 undesignated felony works. For example, sometimes the terms of how the misdemeanor is earned can be negotiated by an Arizona criminal defense attorney. Recent legislation was passed at the Arizona legislature that Attorney Steven Scharboneau was directly involved in passing that requires for most purposes, a class 6 undesignated felony be treated as a misdemeanor for some purposes. This legislation was drafted and passed as to avoid creating hardship is securing housing or employment for folks with a class 6 undesignated felony conviction.
Contact Flagstaff Criminal Defense Attorney Steven Scharboneau Now
Having a criminal defense attorney who is experienced with representing clients against Flagstaff criminal charges, such as criminal defense attorney Steven Scharboneau, can be extremely helpful. If you are facing felony charges arising out of the Flagstaff area, contact Steven 24/7 to set up a time for him to answer your questions free of charge. Please call or text (480) 363-0090.
Flagstaff DUI Lawyer FAQs
When am I allowed to refuse a blood or breath test in Flagstaff?
Arizona operates under an Implied Consent Law. This means that when driving on Arizona streets, you are considered to have given your consent to undergo a blood, breath, or urine test if an officer has probable cause to believe you are driving under the influence. This applies regardless of whether you possess an Arizona driver's license or reside in the state. Even visitors are subject to this law.
If you refuse to provide a breath or blood test, the officers can obtain a Search Warrant through an on-call judge within minutes. This warrant compels you to submit to a blood, breath, or urine test. In the event of continued refusal, the officers have the authority to restrain you in a "restraint chair" and forcibly take a blood sample.
Additionally, any refusal, whether before or after being shown the warrant, can result in a one-year suspension of your driving privileges in Arizona.
If I am Suspended in Arizona, but live in another State, will this affect my driver’s license there?
If you receive a suspension in Arizona, it will be communicated to the other 49 states through the Interstate Compact. Your home state will subsequently send you a letter, suspending your driving license until you obtain a "Clearance Letter" from the Arizona MVD. Essentially, you cannot simply leave Arizona without addressing a DUI charge or MVD suspension, as it will likely have consequences in your home state. It is important to note that Arizona does not have authority over your out-of-state license, but they can suspend your driving privileges within the state. Therefore, if you receive a DUI or refusal suspension within Arizona, it is vital to act and address the issue to avoid further complications.
What happens if I refuse to do any of the field sobriety tests?
Field Sobriety Tests are voluntary and not mandatory. However, they give the officer grounds for reasonable suspicion that you may be intoxicated. Your refusal may be used against you in court, but it is important to remember that the results of these tests are subjective and can be challenged in court.
What happens if I am arrested for a DUI in Flagstaff?
If you are arrested for a DUI, the arresting officer will inform you of your Miranda rights, including the right to remain silent and the right to an attorney. It is important to exercise these rights and not make any statements without consulting a lawyer first. The officer will also confiscate your driver's license and issue a 30-day temporary driving permit.
Within 30 days of your arrest, you must request a hearing with the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) regarding your driving privileges. Failure to do so will result in an automatic suspension of your license for 90 days if you consented to the chemical tests, and 12 months if you refused. It is important to contact a DUI lawyer as soon as possible after your arrest to guide you through the process and ensure that all necessary steps are taken.
Can I still be charged with a DUI if my BAC was below the legal limit?
Yes, in Arizona, you can still be charged with a DUI if your BAC (blood alcohol concentration) was below the legal limit of 0.08%. If there is evidence that you were impaired while driving, such as erratic driving or failed field sobriety tests, you can still face charges for a DUI even if your BAC was below the legal limit. A skilled DUI lawyer can help defend against these charges and challenge any evidence presented by the prosecution.
How much jail time am I facing for a DUI in Flagstaff?
The duration of incarceration for a DUI in Flagstaff depends on various factors, such as blood alcohol content (BAC) level, prior offenses, and the occurrence of injuries or fatalities resulting from your actions. For a first-time DUI offense with a BAC below 0.15, the typical minimum jail term is one day, with a maximum of six months. Repeat offenses within a seven-year period can result in lengthier periods of imprisonment.
If you are responsible for an accident while driving under the influence and someone sustains injuries or loses their life, you may face additional charges and penalties, potentially including felony charges and prison time.
What are the potential penalties for a DUI conviction in Flagstaff?
In addition to incarceration, a DUI conviction can result in various consequences such as monetary fines, probation, community service, mandatory alcohol treatment programs, and the requirement to install an ignition interlock device. These penalties can also increase for repeat offenders or those found to have a high BAC level. It is crucial to consult with a DUI lawyer to understand the potential consequences specific to your case and develop a defense strategy.
Can I get my DUI charge reduced or dismissed?
It is possible for a DUI charge to be reduced or dismissed depending on the circumstances of your case. A skilled DUI lawyer can help negotiate with the prosecution and potentially get a reduced charge or have your case dismissed. Factors that may influence this outcome include evidence presented, previous criminal history, and any mitigating circumstances.
What should I do if I am facing a DUI charge in Flagstaff?
If you are facing a DUI charge in Flagstaff, it is crucial to seek legal counsel from a knowledgeable and experienced DUI attorney. They can guide you through the legal process, defend your rights, and help achieve the best possible outcome for your case. It is essential to act quickly and consult with a lawyer as soon as possible after your arrest.
In addition to seeking legal representation, it is also crucial to make necessary changes in your behavior and seek help if needed. A DUI charge can have severe consequences, and it is essential to take the necessary steps to prevent future offenses. Overall, facing a DUI charge in Flagstaff can be daunting, but with the right legal guidance and personal accountability, you can navigate through the process and work towards a positive outcome.
Do I need a lawyer for my DUI case in Flagstaff?
While you are not required to have a lawyer for your DUI case in Flagstaff, it is highly recommended. A skilled and experienced Flagstaff DUI lawyer can help you navigate the legal system, build a strong defense against the charges, and potentially reduce or dismiss the charges altogether. They can also advise you on your rights and potential consequences of a conviction, as well as negotiate with prosecutors on your behalf.
Additionally, a lawyer can represent you in court and handle all legal proceedings related to your case, allowing you to focus on other important matters. Overall, having a knowledgeable DUI lawyer by your side can greatly improve the outcome of your case.
What exactly is a Certified Ignition Interlock Device, and when is it required in Flagstaff?
If your license is suspended due to the MVD's Implied Consent/Administrative Per Se Affidavit and/or Hearing, or if you have a DUI conviction, you may be required to install an Ignition Interlock Device in your vehicle. This device requires you to blow into it before starting your car and approximately every 15 minutes while the engine is running to ensure that you are not under the influence of alcohol. Failing these tests or registering alcohol consumption will prompt the Ignition Interlock Device company to notify the MVD, potentially leading to a complete revocation of your driving privileges.
What happens if I don’t live in Arizona, but I get a DUI while visiting Flagstaff?
You cannot merely just leave the State and ignore your traffic citation or the Arizona MVD. If you do this, a Warrant will issue for your arrest (which may or may not be effective across State lines), and your license will be Suspended (which will most likely extend across State lines). This means if you just ignore the citation and return home, ultimately your home State will suspend your driving privileges there. Plus, there is a risk the police will show up and arrest you at your door. You will need a Flagstaff DUI Lawyer to handle your case while you are out-of-state.
How will a DUI affect my professional licenses or employment?
Many professions have a governing Board which have specific rules regarding a DUI conviction. A DUI conviction or arrest may negatively impact your ability to maintain your professional license. It’s important to hire a Top Flagstaff DUI Attorney, such as Steven Scharboneau, who know the ins-and-outs of the collateral consequences of a DUI conviction.
If I am convicted of a DUI, how long will this stay on my record in Arizona?
To enhance insurance coverage, most insurance companies review the past 39 months. Regarding a supposed "prior conviction," the law stipulates that any Misdemeanor DUI will remain on your record and be considered against you if it occurred within the last 7 years. Additionally, Felony Aggravated DUI charges are considered throughout one's lifetime. This implies that if you had a prior Felony Aggravated DUI 20 years ago and face a new Felony Aggravated DUI charge today, the new offense can be treated as a Second Felony Offense.
Can I get my Flagstaff DUI conviction expunged?
While it is true that before January 1, of 2023 Arizona did not have a specific law for "Expungement” that law has recently changed. Now, 3 years following the completion of all of the terms of your sentence, you can petition to have your DUI conviction expunged under certain circumstances. There is also an option to obtain a "Judgment of Guilt Set Aside" which is often perceived by employers as a positive step forward and is also a good step toward eventually having your records sealed under the new law.