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Vince Imhoff, Managing Director of Imhoff & Associates, Warns About 5 Common DUI Mistakes

Vince Imhoff, Famed Criminal Attorney

The talented attorney provides an inside look by sharing the 5 biggest mistakes that people make after being arrested for drunk driving.

LOS ANGELES, CA, UNITED STATES, October 7, 2019 / -- Vince Imhoff, the managing director of Imhoff and Associates, was recently chosen by the “Best of Los Angeles Award” community as one of L.A.’s 100 most fascinating people, according to Aurora DeRose, award coordinator for the “Best of Los Angeles Award” community. Now, the talented attorney provides an inside look by sharing the 5 biggest mistakes that people make after being arrested for drunk driving.


1. “I blew over the limit. I might as well plead guilty.”

“People incorrectly believe that because they blew over the limit, they can’t win so they might as well plead guilty and get it over with,” explains Vince Imhoff, “that’s because OVI (Operating a Vehicle while under the Influence) sounds like a very cut-and-dried case. If you are over 0.08% you are going to be found guilty, right? Wrong. Depending on the situation, the test might be inadmissible. If it is inadmissible it cannot be used against you. If it cannot be used against you then, for criminal law purposes, it is like it never happened.”

There are a variety of ways in which a test can become inadmissible. When someone is pulled-over, if the officer did not have the appropriate grounds upon which to stop you, all the evidence collected after the stop, including the test, is excluded. Second, if the officer did not administer the field test properly, this may invalidate the field test which would likely render the subsequent chemical test inadmissible. Even if the officer did everything properly at the scene but the chemical test itself was improperly administered, the test result will be unreliable and hence inadmissible.

This is not an exclusive list. Each case, even OVI cases, has unique facts and for this reason, there are literally an endless supply of reasons why the chemical test may not be considered as evidence. A good lawyer can investigate each case and determine if there is a good argument to be made.

2. “DUI Attorneys are all the same.”

“Attorneys are not all the same. We probably do not help this particular stereotype by dressing in the same boring suit, but underneath the suit we are as different in skill, expertise, and experience as anyone else in any other profession,” continues Vince Imhoff, “this leads to the next point, DUI cases are relatively short cases but that does not mean that they are easy or that any lawyer can do them well. The truth is, the best way to figure out if a lawyer is good at trying OVI cases is (1) whether he is trained to do them, (2) whether he does them regularly, and (3) how good his results are.”

3. “I have time before the trial. I can wait to get an attorney.”

“Once you are convinced that you have found a good attorney, do not wait one instant longer that you need to before hiring that attorney,” warns Vince Imhoff, “success at trial and good plea deals happen because, more than any other reason, an attorney prepared well and thoroughly. If you wait to get an attorney, you are crippling your defense.”

To properly defend a person’s rights, certain demands (like for a jury trial) should be made at the arraignment, or first court appearance. At the arraignment, a prepared attorney should also serve a demand for discovery upon the prosecutor. A diligent attorney will want to review discovery, independently investigate, determine if there are grounds for a suppression motion, and if so, file one and have oral argument regarding it. If someone waits before hiring an attorney, and certainly if they wait until just before trial, none of this will have time to occur.

4. “I’ll just ask [unqualified person], they’ll know what to do.”

“Everyone has someone – an uncle, a police officer buddy, a friend who drinks a lot and has about three DUI’s. Everyone has someone who thinks they know the law and is ready to offer some free advice. Do not listen,” states Vince Imhoff, “as science has advanced and the law has changed with it, OVI has become an increasingly complex area in which to litigate. Advice from anyone other than a lawyer with a significant record of success in OVI cases will almost always be wrong”.

5. “If I just go talk to the prosecutor/police I can probably talk my way out of this.”

“If you are accused of an OVI, particularly where no one was injured and no property was damaged, you may be thinking that this is not such a big deal. But for whatever the reason, many people seem to think that it is a good idea to talk to the police or prosecutor. This never works,” concludes Vince Imhoff, “talking to the police or prosecutor without an attorney present can cause horrendous damage to your case. Everything you say can and will be used against you. You should not discuss your case, ever, with anyone except the attorney you hire to represent.”


Originally from Chicago, Vince Imhoff is admitted to practice law in Illinois, California, and Pennsylvania. He obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Lewis University and earned his JD from the Illinois Institute of Technology/Chicago-Kent College of Law in 1989. From 1990 to 1997, Imhoff was a Cook County, Illinois Public Defender (Chicago). In 1997, he entered private practice as a solo practitioner.

In 2003, Imhoff founded Imhoff & Associates, PC. In 2005, he became the Managing Director of The Cochran Firm, Criminal Defense section. After Mr. Cochran passed away, Imhoff re-established Imhoff & Associates, PC and left the Cochran Firm.

From 2000 through 2002, Imhoff was the assistant coach for the trial team at Loyola University of Chicago, School of Law. He is currently a member of the State Bar of California, State Bar of Illinois and the State Bar of Pennsylvania. He is also a member of the California Public Defenders Association, Santa Monica Bar Association (Treasurer 2012-2014, Board Member 2008-2014), Lesbian Gay Lawyers Association (Secretary 2009-2011, Board Member 2009-2015), San Bernardino County Bar, San Fernando Valley Bar Association, California Attorneys for Criminal Justice (CACJ), and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL).

Aurora DeRose
Michael Levine Media
+1 310-396-6090
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