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Why do they call it Drunk Driving when you aren’t driving?

In Virginia, you don’t have to be driving to get found guilty of DUI/DWI. DUI applies to “operating” a vehicle not just “driving”. Driving a vehicle requires motion. Operation just requires control. A person can be controlling or operating a vehicle by sitting behind the wheel with the keys in the ignition. Cops frequently charge people with DUI when they are sitting in the driver’s seat of a parked car.

So if you have been drinking in Virginia, NEVER put the keys in the ignition and don’t sit behind the drivers seat. This means: No sleeping it off with the keys in the ignition, no making out with your girl friend with the radio on, no listening to the radio and charging your phone.

If you have been drinking, hide the keys and stay out of the front seat. But if this advice comes too late for you, then give me a call and we’ll see what we can do for you.

Luke J. Nichols

Nichols & Green pllc


About Luke Nichols

Luke Nichols practices almost exclusively traffic law in Northern Virginia. His primary practice areas include reckless driving, speeding, DUI/DWI, refusal, hit-and-run, driving on a suspended license, and driving on a revoked license. Mr. Nichols has represented hundreds of Virginia drivers. You can also connect with Luke on Google+
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