The Old Sacramento Bridge

Felony DUI

Defending Clients Against Felony DUI Charges

In California, a fourth DUI arrest in any 10-year period will be charged as a felony. When the stakes are high, it is incredibly important to have a Sacramento felony DUI defense attorney on your side with the experience and hands-on approach you can trust.

In felony DUI cases and drunk driving accidents, charges are less likely to be reduced through negotiation. Having an experienced trial lawyer on your side is vital to give you a fighting chance to avoid incarceration.

I will fight for you at the DMV hearing, giving you an opportunity to subpoena and cross-examine the arresting officer without the prosecution's interference. I can identify potential holes in the state's case, which may allow you or your loved one to stay out of jail or get minimal county time instead of a prison sentence.

Aggravated DUI Charges

California law provides for enhancements to DUI charges when blood alcohol content (BAC) registers significantly higher than the maximum. If your BAC registered above a .15 or .20, the penalties will be more substantial. The same is true if you refused to participate in a breath or field sobriety test, if there was a minor passenger in the car during your arrest or if you were charged with drunk driving under the age of 21.

Arraignment and Charges

If you are facing a felony DUI, you will be required to appear in court at the arraignment. At this time the judge will state the pending charges. It is critical to have a defense attorney at this stage to advise you of what to say and do in response to the judge's declarations. District Attorney's offices often do not submit a "complaint" - the document that officially files charges - at this point in the process. This delay is usually because blood alcohol test results are not yet available. It is important to understand, however, that this does not mean that charges will not be filed. I have known of people who went to the arraignment without a defense attorney and left thinking that charges were not going to be filed, only to find out later that a warrant has been issued for their arrest.

Pre-Hearing Conference

A pre-hearing conference is held after charges are filed. This is an excellent opportunity for an experienced defense attorney to negotiate on your behalf with the goal of protecting your rights, limiting penalties, and even getting charges dismissed.


If negotiations at the pre-hearing conference do not result in a sufficient reduction of charges or an outright dismissal, the next step is to schedule a trial date. I make sure my clients understand the possible outcomes of a trial and use my 20 years of experience to defend their rights in these serious cases.

DMV Hearing

All drunk driving cases must go through two separate legal procedures. The steps described above are part of the criminal court system that is recognizable from movies and television. This involves courtrooms, judges, and attorneys. A separate system, administered by the Department of Motor Vehicles, holds Administrative Per Se hearings on the question of whether the defendant will lose his or her driver’s license. The standard that triggers a DMV hearing is when an accused person has a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or higher. If the DMV hearing officer (a DMV staff member who runs the hearing and issues the ruling) determines that a driver’s BAC was at or above the legal limit then a driver’s license suspension will be imposed. It is important to keep in mind that this DMV hearing is a separate process from the court proceedings and that the outcome of the DMV hearing has no impact on criminal charges brought by the District Attorney’s Office. A qualified felony DUI defense lawyer will be able to represent you in both the court proceedings and the DMV hearing.

Experience Matters

I will work tirelessly to obtain a favorable outcome and to provide you with the best chance of minimizing the negative consequences of a felony charge. As a former major crimes prosecutor, I can even defend you against charges as serious as vehicular manslaughter in a fatal drunk driving accident or hit-and-run. For a free consultation regarding your charges, contact me online or call me at 916-442-1200.

Client Reviews
Nancy King was patient, persistent, and polite. She followed up and kept me informed, took a lot of the stress off of me. She was very instrumental in eventually getting the case against me dismissed. It was money well spent. Linda
My son's case involved felony theft and drug charges. We were thrilled when Nancy was able to obtain a dismissal on all charges. My son's now back on track with his career. Nancy is the kind of attorney who fights hard for her clients and actually cares about them. I recommend her highly. Shawn M.
Nancy King represented me on a DUI. I was involved in an accident and had a blood alcohol level of .13/.14. Nancy King kept pushing in the negotiation process. She was able to get me a wet reckless. Nancy King is someone you can trust. She knows what she's doing and works hard for her clients. I recommend her highly. D.V.
I was wrongfully targeted by the police for a felony offense. Nancy took care of everything for me and got the police to realize that they had made a mistake. Everything was handled promptly and professionally and I was able to protect my reputation. D.B.