What Happens When I am Arrested for DUI?

The initial few hours that occur after a person is arrested for DUI in Colorado can be a nightmare. Questions can go unanswered, especially when sitting in jail with no phone and way to communicate with anyone other than the detention officers.

There are certain procedures that occur after a person is arrested for DUI. This can take up to around 12 hours depending on the police agency and whether it is a heavy night for DUI arrests.

After a DUI arrest, the police agency will do one of three things. First, the officer may serve you with a summons and release you to a sober party who will sign for your custody. This summons is the piece of paper that lists the charges against you and the information pertaining to your first court hearing.

Alternatively, the officer may transport you to a private detox facility, such as Denver Cares Detox Center at 1155 Cherokee Street. Here you will be required to “sober up” and provide a breath sample that is close to .00 prior to release. There is also a cost that will be charged to you for your stay.

The third option that the officer has is to book you into the county detention facility and require that bond is posted before you are released. Typically the bond amount in Denver County is $1,000 to $1,500. Once bond is posted on your behalf, it will still take several hours for your release. You will receive a court date to appear within two weeks in county court to answer the DUI charges filed against you. In addition, you will be restricted from traveling outside of Colorado and your sobriety may be monitored. You must not violate the conditions of your bond, or you could face additional criminal charges.

The local police agency that arrested you will also file the DUI charges with the local court clerk. The court will open its file and assign a case number to the case. This case number includes the year, a code for the type of case (“T” for traffic, “M” for misdemeanor, “CR” for felony) and the next available number in numeric order. An example of a case number would be 2014M00345.

Regardless of how you were arrested and released, the court appearance noted in your paperwork is mandatory. If you do not appear, a warrant will be issued for your arrest. In limited circumstances, a Denver DUI attorney that is retained can change this court date. If you are from out-of-state, other issues can arise.