Alcohol Crimes Lawyer for Des Moines, IA
Everyone makes bad choices sometimes. If you've made a bad choice related to an alcoholic beverage, you need an Iowa alcohol crimes lawyer.
If you've experienced a recent DUI arrest, you may need advice about when Iowa OWI law requires you to get a temporary restricted license and an ignition interlock device. An Iowa DUI attorney can help you assess your chances of getting probation. Ask your DUI lawyer about whether your driver's license will be subject to license revocation after you've been charged with an OWI offense. Your driving privilege will be at risk and you will have to get a substance abuse evaluation. A first OWI charge is a serious misdemeanor. By the third or subsequent OWI charge, an offender will face a Class D felony. After a DUI charge, you could forfeit your motor vehicle to the government under Iowa law.
A conviction for OWI or for other alcohol-related Iowa offenses could cost you a lot. The fine for a first offense is $1,250 plus a 15% surcharge but that doesn't take into account the rest of your costs.
Alternatively, you might face the criminal charge of public intoxication. Because of recent changes to the law, public intoxication is now always a simple misdemeanor.
If you've been charged, there's no changing the past. All you can do now is try to limit the damage that the evidence can do to you.
Whether you've gotten caught making a bad decision or whether you've been unjustly accused, finding a lawyer to help you with your (alleged) drinking offense is the next good choice you can make.
When someone accuses you of a crime, the police will investigate. Then, if a judge finds probable cause, you could go to jail. Once in jail, you might be let out on bond. Pretrial release might let you out. You might not be let out at all.
Instead of sending you to jail, the judge might give you papers. Those papers will tell you when your court date is. After your arrest, police will read you your rights. Then, they will give you time to call an attorney or a law firm.
At an initial appearance, you will see a judge. The judge might schedule a preliminary hearing. At a preliminary hearing, you or your lawyer will ask questions. One or more witnesses will be under oath. After the questions, the judge will decide whether probable cause exists.
Your attorney might suggest waiving the preliminary hearing. Before deciding, consult your lawyer. Alternatively, the prosecutor might file the "trial information" before the preliminary hearing. If so, there won't be a preliminary hearing.
Your attorney tell you about your next court date. After your preliminary hearing happens (or after you receive the trial information,) you will have an arraignment.
Police will give reports to the county attorney's office. Then, the county attorney's office will review the information. After the prosecutor reads the reports, they will decide what offenses to charge you with. For instance, a prosecutor might charge you with a misdemeanor. Alternatively, they could accuse you of a felony.
Your defense lawyer will tell you what the government accused you of. Moreover, they will explain your rights. You also need to know how this could affect your criminal record. In short, they will tell you about the worst case scenario. A criminal lawyer will tell you more about the fines, terms of incarceration, and collateral consequences that might apply.
Your law firm will give you legal advice. Specifically, they will explain the pros and cons of taking your case to trial. After all, only you can decide whether or not to accept a plea offer.
Finally, if a jury convicts you, you can probably appeal. The court of appeals hears appellate arguments. So does the Iowa Supreme Court. Because they review legal issues, they might find a constitutional problem. That means that the law can be illegal. Alternatively, the district court might have treated a legal law illegally. However, the right to appeal does not apply to simple misdemeanors. Ask your criminal defense attorney for more information.