A man was recently arrested for a DUI after police were alerted through a 911 call that a person was driving in an erratic manner in the community. The man charged with the crime is about 50 years old and was arrested in Ocean Beach.

At the time of the arrest, the driver pulled into the parking lot near the beach and parked in a handicapped spot, which he was registered to do. As he was beginning to pull out of the parking place, officers blocked his vehicle with their own and instructed him to exit the vehicle.

Although officers informed the suspect that he could refuse to take a field sobriety test or a Breathalyzer test, he decided to take the test. Officers indicate that he blew a 0.31, well over the legal limit of 0.08.

The man was driving with a passenger in his vehicle, but the passenger was allowed to leave the scene. Police then impounded the DUI suspect’s vehicle.

When asked to take a breath test, you do have the right to refuse it, as stated by the officers. Often, however, refusing to take a breath test will result in an arrest.

The penalties for DUI charges can include jail time, fines, driver education and license suspension. Repeat offenders may receive harsher sentences than first-time offenders. However, it’s important to remember that a charge is not a conviction — you still have rights if you’ve been accused of a crime.

Source: San Diego Reader, “DUI Makes for Bad Beach Day in O.B.,” Mercy Baron, Sept. 17, 2012.