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Boulder Colorado Legal Blog

DUI/DWAI charges can apply to bicyclists in Colorado

When driving under the influence or driving while ability impaired are understandably associated with people operating a motor vehicle in Colorado, it is important to understand that the charges can be applicable in other circumstances too. This could sound unusual, but many people are arrested for violations when they did not even realize there were laws regulating certain activities. Riding a bicycle while under the influence is one of them.

Those who are riding a bicycle could find themselves under arrest for DUI/DWAI if law enforcement stops them and finds they are under the influence or their ability is impaired. With the warmer weather rapidly approaching and more people in the state deciding to shun a motor vehicle and use a bicycle, those who are charged must remember their right to a strong defense. A woman was recently arrested for riding her bicycle while she was intoxicated. This might come as a surprise to people who pigeonhole DUI/DWAI as something that can only happen if it is a motor vehicle driver, but state law classifies bicycles as vehicles. With that, riders must adhere to the law and stay sober to ride and avoid an arrest.

Man arrested for harassment and stalking ex-girlfriend

Throughout Colorado, people become involved in relationships that go sour. In most cases, both parties will go their separate ways and forget about the other person. In some, however, people are accused of stalking and harassment. Those who are facing accusations that they are behaving as a stalker or harassing another person could deal with a variety of penalties if there is a conviction. In addition, the words "stalking" and "harassment" carry with them such negative connotations that it can hinder a person's life over the long-term. Having legal defense is imperative when dealing with these situations.

A man was accused of stalking and harassing an ex-girlfriend. He was arrested. The man, 58, was said to have continually contacted the woman by calling her and sending her text messages. He was arriving at her workplace, going to her home without an invitation, and tried to contact her using social media. This is said to have continued for six months after they parted ways as a couple. Her co-workers stated that the man also made calls to the business and hung up when she was not the person who picked up the phone. Another said she saw the man walk back and forth in front of the business to see if the woman was there.

How courts decide on spousal maintenance

In divorces where one spouse's earning potential is much higher than the other spouse's, Colorado courts may rule that justice requires the higher-earning spouse to pay maintenance, also known as alimony. Understanding the law is key to these situations.

The following will be considered with maintenance, its amount and duration: the financial resources of the spouse who is receiving maintenance and if he or she can meet their needs; the financial resources of the spouse who is paying and if the payments can be met; what the marital lifestyle was; how marital property will be distributed; the income, employment, ability to be employed and if there is a reduction of employment because of a child; and if one spouse had a higher or lower income when compared with the other.

What happens if my underage child is caught drinking and driving?

It is a serious crime for those under age 21 to be caught drinking and driving. Your child could be charged with an Underage Drinking and Driving (UDD) offense if he or she had a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) between .02 and .05. If your child had a BAC of .05 or higher, he or she will receive the same punishments as an adult driver, including a Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI) offense or a Driving Under the Influence (DUI) offense.

UDD offense

Reckless and careless driving leads to impounding of car

Some drivers in Boulder like to take to the road and explore how fast their vehicle can go. This is especially true if a person is driving a sports car that is designed to drive fast. While there are places where people can race legally without putting others at risk, doing so on the open roadways in Colorado will inevitably result in law enforcement becoming involved and possibly making an arrest. When the driver abandons the vehicle and flees, it is generally unavoidable that law enforcement will find that person. It is wise to think about legal alternatives to formulate a defense immediately.

A yellow Chevrolet Corvette was impounded by law enforcement after its driver was said to have been driving at excessive speed on the road, nearly leading to accidents. Reports were coming in at around lunchtime informing law enforcement of a vehicle that was being operated in a reckless manner. The driver was said to have been going over the center line and placed other drivers in jeopardy.

Drivers could get nabbed in DUI/DWAI crackdown in Colorado

The holiday season in Colorado is a time for people to spend time with family and friends and attend parties to celebrate various events. That can be positive and enjoyable. However, it can also lead to people getting behind the wheel after drinking or using drugs. When law enforcement makes a traffic stop and arrests the person for driving under the influence or driving while ability impaired, it can lead to fines, lost driving privileges and even jail time. The circumstances in which people will be charged with DUI/DWAI can differ, but when law enforcement is having a scheduled crackdown, it could lead to more people facing charges and in need of legal help.

There will be a periodic increase in patrols for law enforcement to find and arrest drivers committing DUI/DWAI. This is part of the holiday season and will continue throughout much of the month. Referred to as "The Heat Is On," the state is trying to prevent people from driving under the influence and making sure that their increased enforcement is known. The goal is to stop the accidents with injuries and fatalities that are part of drivers getting behind the wheel under the influence.

Make sure to have legal help when facing property crimes

Being accused of property crimes in Boulder can cause a slew of problems. In many instances, people are not even aware that they have committed a crime when they suddenly find themselves under arrest and are facing the prospect of a trial and a variety of penalties. The level of what was taken or done can have an impact whether it is a small incident and a misdemeanor or a larger incident and a felony. These allegations can impact minors or people who are legal adults. There are many ways for property crimes to be alleged and it is imperative for those who are confronted with these charges to have a strong legal defense.

People can find themselves making mistakes based on desperation or a simple momentary lapse in judgment. It might have been a misunderstanding with money, a motor vehicle or another item that the person used without permission. These are not the acts of hardened criminals, but simple missteps that should not lead to a lifetime of regret and an extended jail sentence.

Determining parenting time in family law and divorce

When a Colorado couple has ended their union, but shares a child, there are inevitable issues that must be addressed as part of their divorce settlement. The best interests of the child are, obviously, paramount, but determining parenting time is one of the most important factors with the care and nurturing of the child. Understanding what the law says about the child's best interests and parenting time is one of the key factors that the parents should grasp as the case moves forward.

Whether it stems from motions from either party or the court deciding to make the motions on its own, there can be parenting time provisions that the court views as being in the best interests of the child. A caveat is that if the court has a hearing and finds that parenting time for one or both parties would constitute a danger to the child or impair development, other provisions can be made. If it is found that the child will be put in danger or the development will be hindered, there can be a restriction in the parenting time.

New criminal diversion programs in Boulder County

Boulder County will soon offer two new programs to help people with mental health or addiction problems stay out of jail. The Boulder County DA, Michael Dougherty, stated that too many people are entering the criminal justice system because of a mental health issue. These programs aim to address that problem starting in early 2019. Grants from the U.S. Department of Justice will fund both programs.

 

What are the penalties for first-offense DUI/DWAI in Colorado?

Coloradans who are dealing with a first-offense for driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while ability impaired (DWAI) should know what to expect in terms of potential penalties. Because the state takes it seriously when people who are under the influence and impaired are behind the wheel, the laws and the penalties reflect that attempt to dissuade people from taking part in the activity. Knowing the penalties that can come about if there is a conviction is key to deciding a defense strategy.

When there is a conviction for DUI, the person will be imprisoned for a minimum of five days and up to one year. The five days are mandatory. However, this can be suspended if the person takes part in alcohol evaluation and completes the financial obligations for a Level I or II program. There can be a fine of a minimum of $600 and up to $1,000. The court can suspend the fine. There will be a minimum of 48 hours of community service and a maximum of 96 hours. This cannot be suspended. Should the person's blood-alcohol concentration be 0.20 or above when driving or within two hours of driving, the minimum jail sentence will be 10 days.

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