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Matthew Ruff, Top Torrance DUI Attorney in the South Bay

Your life deserves the best defense, Do not settle for second best. Unfortunately it is amatuer hour in Los Angeles County with neophytes and "kids" fresh out of law school claiming to be DUI experts with little or no experience to back it up. Who gets hurt? The client. When you get into Court and the lawyer pressures you to plead guilty or no contest with little investigation, prep work or challenge to any of the governments case. Matthew Ruff has 21 years experience defending drunk driving cases, he doesn't kowtow down to the prosecution and leaves no stone unturned when representing his clients. Over 4000 cases under his belt.

There are few things in life that are as terrifying as being arrested for a DUI. The moments after the occurrence are fraught with worry, fear, distress and concern about your drivers license and potential criminal consequences. Torrance DUI Attorney Matthew J. Ruff can help to alleviate the anxiety and address your concerns about what immediate steps need to be taken to mitigate the damage and prepare for Court and the DMV ramifications.

Contact Matthew Ruff now at (310) 527-4100

Does Hiring a DUI Lawyer guarantee a dismissal? Not in every case. However, there is no better way to deal with a DUI arrest than to hire a professional who can evaluate every aspect of the arrest, testing process and DMV issues. The bottom line is that not everyone arrested for drunk driving is guilty. Because the case revolves around opinion and conclusions of machines, there is oftentimes errors that can be uncovered by an expert familiar with the shortcomings of breath and blood testing and assessments made during field sobriety testing.

Did you know: Nearly all breath testing equipment makes certain assumptions about the subject giving the sample. These assumptions allow the device to calculate the breath alcohol level into a blood alcohol concentration. The problem with these assumptions is that they base the calculation of BAC on the fact that all people blowing fit into a particular category such as body temperature. If the subject has an abnormally high body temperature, for example, the machine will falsely report the blood alcohol concentration as a higher number than the true level. One recent scientific study found that for every degree above "normal" the machine will exaggerate the true BAC by 8%. Therefore, a person with a temperature who blows a .08 or .09 may indeed be falsely convicted. If you or anyone close to you recently was arrested at a time they were sick with the flu or an infection, it is worth it to speak to Torrance DUI Attorney Matthew Ruff about how this can be presented to a Court to obtain a dismissal of the charges.

Question of the Day: Does a police officer have to observe an actual violation of the vehicle code in order to stop a motor vehicle for suspected DUI? The short answer is no. Law enforcement may stop and detain any driver if they observe a "reasonable suspicion" of criminal activity. What this means is that certain driving behavior can be considered when deciding to pull someone over for possible dwi, even if the behavior does not revise to the level of an actual violation. Here is an example, say a Torrance cop sees a vehicles tires touch the lane lines multiple times over a long period of time but never cross over. This may constitute a stop if the officer can articulate the "weaving" was pronounced and is indicative of impairment. The bottom line is that a Judge will need to hear that the stop was based on facts that would cause a reasonable person to suspect a crime may be occurring, anything short of that will not suffice.

Recent Case Successes

A jury agreed with Matthew about the guilt of his client after trial in Bellflower on July 12, 2015 and handed down a NOT GUILTY verdict. The accused was charged with driving with a BAC above the legal limit and DUI after a night of partying with his friends in Lakewood California. Matt argued that his client's blood alcohol level was below the legal limit at the time of driving even though a blood test later revealed a result of .11%. During cross examination of the states's expert Matt brought out the fact that a BAC changes over time and a driver can have a level well below the legal limit even if a later test shows a higher result. The jury took less than 2 hours to come back with an acquittal on those charges. Matthew had earlier won the DMV hearing in the case so the client was quite pleased with the outcome.

On April 27, 2015 Matthew resolved a very complicated case occurring in Palos Verdes Estates. The client was involved in a minor collision and was arrested by PVE police after submitting to a chemical test that showed her blood alcohol level to be .29 BAC. The other aggravating factor was that she was already on probation in the Torrance Court for a DUI which occurred one year prior. The client was in desperate need of help and the family turned to Matthew for guidance. He immediately got the Judge to go along with a treatment program for the client which she desperately needed. Matt worked with the Court and the DA to resolve the case for NO JAIL and no community service, just rehab and probation.

On October 21, 2014 Matthew obtained a dismissal of a second DUI arrest case in Torrance Court. Here are the facts: The client was arrested by Palos Verdes Police at her home after they received a 911 call about her vehicle and reckless driving. When they arrived they saw the car in her driveway and proceeded to enter her yard in order to contact her and interview her about the 911 call that was made. She admitted she just got home and they administered FST's and gave her a breath test that showed a .14 BAC level. She was booked and susequently charged with DUI. The attorney sought to have the charges dismissed by arguing that the client's 4th Amendment rights were violated because the police did not have a warrant when they entered the property. A motion was filed and a hearing was conducted where the arresting officer testified about the incident, Matthew presented evidence that showed his client had an expectation of privacy on her property and the Constitution protects that privacy protects citizens from unreasonable searches by the police without a judicial warrant. The Judge agreed and the DA had no choice but to dismiss the charges

Mr. Ruff was retained by a local resident after being stopped and arrested in Gardena for DUI. He was pulled over by the cop for "tinted windows" and was run through the usual paces for drunk drivers, FST exams, questioning, the whole bit. He was given a breath test at the police station which displayed .12 BAC. Matthew filed a request for a DMV hearing within the 10 day deadline and was given a date to appear. At the hearing he presented argument and case law challenging the reason for the initial stop, asserting his client's arrest was in violation of the Fourth Amendment. The hearing officer ignored these arguments and took the license anyway. Not deterred, Matthew filed an appeal of the decision and within 3 weeks got word that Sacramento reversed the hearing officer, agreed with Matt and returned and set aside the suspension on March 6, 2014.

Mr. Ruff was hired by a young lady charged with DUI after she was stopped for speeding on the 405 freeway. She took a breath test that showed her BAC level to be .09%. Matt appeared in Court and presented mitigating evidence to the city attorney that resulted in all DUI charges being dropped and a deal struck for "exhibition of speed" on October 20, 2014 in the Los Angeles Superior Court Division 60.

Matthew was hired by a client's father after the young man called home from the Redondo Beach jail at 2 am saying he had been arrested and booked on Driving under the Influence of alcohol, VC23152ab. The client took 2 breath tests in the field that showed a level of a .08 and a .08, the legal per se limit in California, the client was a student and would be entereing the job market soon. Matthew Ruff embarked on an investigation of the case, starting with the DMV demand, at the hearing he obtained a set aside of any suspension and the license was returned. Next, the attorney set his sights on the criminal charge of DUI in the Torrance Courthouse. He served a formal request for records pertaining to the breath test and he discovered a number of errors in the testing protocal employed by the police department. The errors allowed for an argument that the client truly had a BAC below .08 at the time of driving. This new evidence was presented to the prosecution and the DUI charges were both dismissed. The case was dropped down to a "dry reckless" on June 25, 2013 . The client was spared from having any IID on his car, his DMV record remained clean of any alcohol related charge and he had no suspension of any kind, so no need for an SR-22. An additional bonus for the client is that he never had to appear in Court. Because he was out of the area in College, Matthew was able to make all appearances for him and resolve the case.

Question of the Day: Is a Breath Test Better Than a Blood Test? Both tests can be an accurate reflection of a person's true blood alcohol level if done properly. However, the breath test for BAC levels are prone to more errors than blood testing as a general rule. The main reason is that the blood test is more "direct evidence" of actual ethanol concentration. The main issues concerning breath machines relate to the manner in which the tests are administered and the time when a person is tested. For example, breath machines may tend to overstate actual levels when the individual is tested in the "absorptive phase" of alcohol elimination. During this time the chance of error is more likely. A good example of a circumstance where breath tests may yield a false high is when the driver consumes alcohol within 15-45 minutes prior to being tested. At the end of the day all testing methadology can produce error and it is therefore important to have the resilts reviewed by a competent attorney prior to pleading guilty to driving under the influence in California.

DUI enforcement in the South Bay has always been an area of emphasis for the local Police Department. Programs such as the South Bay DUI Task Force have been in existence for many years with the stated goal of aggressively enforcing drunk driving laws. A local Torrance DUI Attorney can examine the arresting officers handling of the case and look for improprieties and evidentiary problems that can give the defense leverage in negotiating a favorable disposition. For example, most driving under the influence cases involve the use of a breath test to prove the driver's blood alcohol level at the time of driving. What many people do not know is that these tests are governed by state regulations which dictate the manner is which the test is to be administered and how the machines are maintained. DUI attorney Matthew Ruff knows these regs better than most cops and prosecutors and uses them as a sword to attack and get the breath test thrown out. In one recent case, for example, the lawyer found a problem with the test when he was examining the breath machine records. The sample it turns out was taken in violation of the regulation requiring a 15 minute continuous observation of the subject and he proved that the rules were not followed and got the case dismissed at the DMV even though the BAC level was a purported .17%.

Another common type of case we defend are driving under the influence charges filed against a person with a prior conviction for drunk driving or DWI. In these instances, the client is certainly encouraged to have a lawyer on their side, particularly since the California Vehicle Code compels a mandatory jail sentence if the person is convicted on a new case. Fortunately, Torrance DUI Attorney Matthew Ruff has extensive experience with clients facing a DUI with a prior, or priors. In one recent case, for example, Matthew represented a client arrested in the South Bay near the beach, the case was filed in Torrance Court. The allegations were: 2 Counts VC23152(a),(b) with a breath test of .14/.14 and a prior conviction for driving under the influence within the last 10 years. The client retained Mr. Ruff who knew exactly what to do. In Court, the attorney met and conferred with the prosecution and negotiated a disposition that involved "striking the prior". This resolution know transformed the case to a "first offense" DUI where no jail time was mandatory, the client paid a fine, had to attend the class and was placed on informal probation, no Caltrans, No Community Service, No ankle bracelet, No home confinement or house arrest.

Another common type of drunk driving issue that has huge consequences for a person's driver's license is a refusal allegation. The DMV will seek to strip you from your ability to drive for a minimum of one year if the officer checks the box on the APS order that you "refused" to take a breath or blood test. Also, the officer may claim the blood test that administered was "forced", which means it was against your consent, if this is what is happening in your case the DMV will also treat that as a refusal for suspension/revocation purposes. In one Torrance DUI case Matthew handled his client was charged with the refusal to take a test, the client insisted the officer was being abusive and overbearing to the point the client had to "shut down". The case proceeded to trial in the Torrance Court and Matthew was successful in persuading the jury that not only was his client not guilty of the DUI charge but also never refused as alleged by the officer.

Having a local Torrance DUI Attorney on your side in Court also allows for better negotiations because the prosecutor knows that the lawyer is not afraid to go to trial if necessary. Matthew Ruff has won many jury trials in Torrance DUI cases. In one case, the attorney represented a young man who worked in the aerospace industry, he was accused of driving while intoxicated and refusing to submit to a chemical test. The client was adamant that he was not inebriated and the Torrance Police were treating him unfairly. Matthew took the case to a jury even though the prosecution offered a reduced charge, and the jury sided with Mr. Ruff and acquitted his client of all counts. Our Torrance DUI Law Firm takes the approach that all cases are resolved much more favorably when you negotiate from a position of strength.

All DMV hearing regarding an individual's drivers license after a Torrance DUI arrest take place at the El Segundo Driver Safety Office on Sepulveda Blvd. Matthew Ruff has litigated hundreds of hearings at this location and knows all the hearing officers by first name. If your license is important to you, a DMV hearing must be scheduled within 10 calendar days of the arrest. Our firm has one of the highest success rates at DMV hearings. With an intricate knowledge of APS rules and procedures, the lawyer is able to save his clients from a license suspension in most cases.

More common nowadays are the cases where the accused is an immigrant with aspirations of becoming a United States citizen. For those seeking to make the U.S. their home, a DUI can create an obstacle. Torrance DUI Lawyer, Matthew Ruff has represented countless people who are in this situation. For example, in one recent case Matt was retained by a foreign born national here on a work visa. The client was arrested in Torrance for driving under the influence and the breath test was nearly .14%. The client was in the process of moving to Canada and was in fear the DWI would hinder his ability to maintain employment and move back to California in the future. Matthew took great care to fight the charges in Court, he was able to go to Court for the client so that his work would not be adversely impacted. In the end the attorney negotiated a reduced charge of reckless driving and got the DUI charges dropped. The client was able to comply with all terms of the dispostion without having to travel back to this state.

In recent years, Matthew has seen a rising concern about how a DUI conviction will impact a person's ability to travel outside the United States. He is cognizant of the fact that a criminal record may exclude entry into some countries and therefore works hard to resolve evry case with an eye toward the possibility the client may encounter problems if the outcome is not in his or her favor. For example, Canada has a very strict policy about admitting travelers with a drunk driving conviction, even for a pleasure trip or a business travel. As such, if you have aspirations of foreign travel and are facing a charge for any crime, talk to an attorney to explore a way to minimize the consequences of the charge.

Matthew's office is in the Old Courthouse Building next to the 405 freeway on Crenshaw. Because he is local to the area, this gives his clients a significant advantage. 1). Knowledge of the local Judges 2). Familiarity with the Torrance Court Courts and procedures 3). Knowledge and experience with the local Prosecutors (Both District Attorneys and City Prosecutors) 4). Knowledge of individual police and law enforcement officers, their practices and Departmental policies.

A DUI arrest ending with an appearance in the Torrance Court can originate in a number of the cities located in the South Bay, including Rancho Palos Verdes, Lomita, Gardena, Hermosa Beach, Rolling Hills, Manhattan Beach. If you were taken into custody within the borders of the city of Torrance then you were likely issued a notice to appear in Division P of the Court where all DUI cases are ultimately adjudicated. Torrance DUI Attorney Matthew Ruff has personally defended over a thousand matters in the Torrance/South Bay Courthouse on Maple Avenue. Due in large part to the proximity of his office at 18411 Crenshaw Blvd. in Torrance, Matthew knows the ins and outs of the local Judicial system including knowing who the Judges are that will be hearing your case, including their likes and dislikes. He also is personally familiar with the local prosecutors that will be pursuing the charges against you. All of this local knowledge adds up to a huge advantage for his clients DUI cases.

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Call Matthew Ruff if you or someone you care about is facing a DUI charge in Torrance, he can be reached directly at (310) 527-4100.

 

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