Legal Meaning of DUI in Colorado

Driving under the influence is the operation of a motor vehicle while your ability to drive is substantial impaired by drugs, alcohol, or a combination of drugs and alcohol.  Operating a motor vehicle includes actually driving or being in actual physical control of the vehicle.  Colorado law will presume you are substantially impaired if your blood alcohol content is greater than .08.  Driving under the influence is an unclassified misdemeanor, and it is defined at C.R.S. 42-4-1301.

What is driving?

Driving means actually driving or being in actual physical control of a motor vehicle.  

“Actual Physical Control” is present when a person exercises bodily influence or direction over a motor vehicle;  

which is to be decided by a totality of the circumstances.

Factors you may consider in deciding whether or not a person was in actual physical control of a motor vehicle, include, but are not limited to the following:

A.  Where the vehicle was found;

B. Where in the vehicle the person was found;

C. Whether or not the keys were in the motor vehicle's ignition;

D. Whether or not the motor vehicle was running;

E.  Any other factor which tends to indicate that the person exercised bodily influence or direction over a motor vehicle or not based on your every day experience.

No one factor listed above definitively decides whether or not a person was in actual physical control of a motor vehicle.

People v. Swain, 959 P.2d 426 (Colo. 1998).

What do you do if Actual Physical Control is an issue in your case? 

These types of cases require an in-depth review of the facts of your case and a skilled attorney.  You should speak with a competent DUI Attorney as soon as you can.  DUI Cases have serious consequences and can have a profound impact on your life.