If you have the misfortune of getting arrested for attempted DUI, you might wonder just how that could ever have happened. Either you were driving the car, or you weren’t, right?
While that does seem logical — and a diligent criminal defense attorney could potentially succeed in winning an acquittal — the terms of California Code, Penal Code – PEN § 21a state that “[a]n attempt to commit a crime consists of two elements: a specific intent to commit the crime, and a direct but ineffectual act done toward its commission.”
In other words, that you were too hapless or inebriated to complete the action of your intent does not matter under California law.
An attempted DUI is (slightly) less serious than a DUI
If convicted on charges of attempted DUI, the courts cannot use that as a prior offense for any subsequent DUI arrests. There also is no mandatory notification sent to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to suspend your license.
In some cases of DUI, plea bargaining to a lesser charge of attempted DUI may be the best outcome that you can expect.
You have the right to a robust defense
Of course, it is far better to beat the charges outright than to plea bargain and have a conviction on your record. This can really become a problem if you are seeking a green card and want to remain legally in the United States.
By working closely with your San Jose criminal defense attorney, you can craft a strong defense strategy that could lead to an acquittal or dismissal of the charges against you.