Criminal and DUI Defenses: “I did not know, it was against the law” does not relieve a defendant of criminal liability.

“What You Don’t Know, Could Cost You Your Freedom”

Article by: James Novak, DUI & Criminal Defense Lawyer Arizona
Good criminal lawyers can challenge your AZ DUI using different types of defenses; but in Arizona, “I didn’t know” is not one of them.

Arizona criminal defense attorneys may challenge your DUI or criminal charges using certain defenses for example, “Affirmative Defenses”, “Reasonable Doubt”, and “violation of rights” defenses. If successful, the DUI or criminal charges may be dismissed or acquitted. But the fact that you “did not know” you violated the law, does not release you of “criminal responsibility”. Thus an experienced Arizona criminal lawyer would not attempt to use it.

Arizona Law
A.R.S. Arizona Criminal Code Title 13, Chapter 2, 13-204
“GENERAL PRINCIPLES OF CRIMINAL LIABILITY” Chapter 2, 13- 204 of Arizona Law
Reads in part as follows:

“13-204. Effect of ignorance or mistake upon criminal liability

A. Ignorance or a mistaken belief as to a matter of fact does not relieve a person of criminal liability …

B. Ignorance or mistake as to a matter of law does not relieve a person of criminal responsibility”
AZ Criminal Charges – What You Should Know
1) Criminal and DUI laws are different in every state; Arizona has some of the most harsh penalties and strict DUI laws in the Country;
2) Arizona Prosecutors egregiously pursue convictions for DUI, Drug and other Criminal charges in Arizona;
3) Currently all DUI convictions both Misdemeanor and Felony DUI expose you to incarceration in jail or prison;
4) Most Arizona drug charges are prosecuted as Felonies:
5) Your chances of getting DUI or Criminal charges dismissed increase drastically when you retain a criminal lawyer or DUI attorney to defend you.
How to Prevent, Avoid, or Mitigate Criminal Convictions in Arizona
• Become familiar with Arizona Criminal Laws, especially if you are visiting from another state; or you have recently moved to Arizona;
• Become familiar with your basic Federal and State Constitutional Rights;
• If you are driving and stopped by police for suspicion of DUI, do not offer information may harm your defense such as “I just left a bar”, or I only had two drinks.
• If you are arrested, the police are not required to read you the “Miranda Rights” which include your right to remain silent; and your right to an attorney, until or before interregation or questioning;
• Remain cooperative.
• Invoke your right to “remain silent”, until your attorney is present, either verbally or in writing. If you do not formally invoke this right, and you just remain silent, you will appear uncooperative which will harm your defense.
• Become familiar with several Criminal Defense or DUI Lawyers in your County, before you need one; and keep their contact information with you, or in your mobile device.

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Source: Arizona State Legislature
Arizona Revised Statutes azleg.gov
If you have been arrested; face active Arizona criminal or DUI charges, or have an existing warrant for your arrest in Maricopa County for Arizona DUI, DWI, drunk driving, drug or any other criminal charges contact the Law Office of James Novak, for your Free Consultation at (480) 413-1499. James Novak, experienced Arizona criminal Defense and DUI & Criminal defense Attorney, James Novak will speak with you directory concerning your charges, and provide you with defense options. James Novak is an experienced trial lawyer and former prosecutor. The Law Office of James Novak is devoted 100% to defending DUI, Drug & criminal charges in valley wide within Maricopa County including Mesa AZ, Scottsdale AZ, Tempe AZ, Phoenix AZ, Chandler AZ, Gilbert AZ, East Valley, and surrounding cities within the Phoenix metro and Maricopa County Area.

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