San Francisco officer charged with DUI pleads not guilty

For many people, a clean criminal record is important for finding or maintaining employment. Finding a job is hard enough without a blemished record, which is why something like a drunk driving charge can leave many people feeling worried about their futures. Fortunately, being charged with a crime is not the same as being convicted, and everyone has the right to challenge charges that have been leveled against them.

This is exactly what one San Francisco police sergeant has chosen to do. He is facing serious charges of drunk driving and hit-and-run, but recently entered a plea of not guilty.

The officer was arrested earlier this month after he apparently hit a parked car, pushing it into a tree. Police say the officer left the scene of the accident. They followed debris from the alleged crash to a home where they found the officer. Prosecutors say his blood-alcohol level was 0.28 percent. The officer has been charged with DUI and hit-and-run, both misdemeanors.

The officer has faced problems at work because of his arrest. He is currently on paid leave, and if he returns to the office, he will be forced to work in an administrative position.

Although it seems this officer may be allowed to return to work, others in the Bay Area may face stricter penalties for a drunk driving conviction, including termination. When a person is facing these penalties and the others that come with a DUI conviction, it may be worthwhile to consider fighting the charges. Blood-alcohol tests are not always accurate, and sometimes police make mistakes. By investigating the details of a case, opportunities for a strong defense may appear.

Source: ABC 7, "SF police sergeant pleads not guilty to DUI, hit-and-run," Oct. 24, 2013

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