by Brett Nagle, DUI Attorney Edmonds
DUI charges in Edmonds, Washington are handled mainly by two different courts: (1) Edmonds Municipal Court; and, (2) Snohomish County District Court, South Division. The agency that arrests you will determine which court your case is filed into. There are three main police agencies serving Edmonds. The Edmonds Police Department, located at 250 Fifth Avenue North, Edmonds, WA 98290, cites DUI cases into Edmonds Municipal Court. Edmonds Municipal Court is located at the same address, right across the hall from the police department. Edmonds police often cite cases directly into Edmonds Municipal Court, which causes the arraignment hearing to be held within a day or two of arrest. Edmonds Police can also send the case to the prosecutor for review.
Misdemeanors and gross misdemeanors (like DUI) in Edmonds are prosecuted by a private law firm on contract with the city. This firm is located at 23607 Washington 99 Edmonds, WA 98026. When an Edmonds officer sends a case to the prosecutor for review, this delays the filing of the case. Typically the prosecutor makes a charging decision within about a week to approximately a month. When the Edmonds prosecutor charges you with DUI, you will receive a summons in the mail to appear at Edmonds Municipal Court for arraignment.
The second police agency serving Edmonds is the Washington State Patrol (WSP). WSP troopers have statewide jurisdiction, but generally patrol state highways like Highway 99 or State Route 104. State Route 104 runs from I-5 to the Edmonds ferry dock. The state patrol covers SR 104 and also responds to reports of DUIs and other crimes reported on the Kingston ferry or at the dock. The Washington State Patrol refers Edmonds DUI cases to the Snohomish County Prosecutor for review. The amount of time the it takes for the prosecutor to review your case varies, depending on the workload of the office. Once a charging decision is made, the state will file your case in Snohomish County District Court, South Division, located in Lynnwood.
The Snohomish County Sheriff also patrols Edmonds and files cases into South Division. Sheriff deputies follow the same filing procedure as the state patrol, by sending cases to the county prosecutor for review and ultimately filing cases in South Division.
The third and most serious possibility for someone arrested for DWI/DUI in Edmonds is referral into Snohomish County Superior Court. Superior Court in Everett handles felonies. An example of a felony arising from a DUI arrest is vehicular assault or vehicular manslaughter. If you injured or killed someone while driving under the influence in Edmonds, you probably earned a ticket to superior court in Everett. Another example occurs if you have multiple prior DUI convictions and the state is going to pursue a felony DUI. If you are held in Snohomish County Jail following your arrest, the state has 72 hours to file an affidavit of probable cause telling the judge why you should be held on the charge. If you are released, the state has years (statute of limitations) to decide whether to charge you with a felony. If this information applies to you or a loved one, turn away from the computer and call an experienced Edmonds DUI lawyer right away. Before ending my career as a prosecutor in Snohomish County, I handled hundreds of felony cases in Everett’s Snohomish County Superior Court. If this information applies to you, we have a lot of work to do.
Prior offenses and ignition interlock: If you have been arrested for DUI and your record shows a “prior offense,” judges in Washington must require you to install ignition interlock on any vehicle you drive. A “prior offense” is any charge that was originally charged as DUI, even if that charge was reduced to reckless or negligent driving. This condition will be ordered as a condition of your release at arraignment, which is typically your first appearance in court. Other mandatory conditions of release also apply. Whether or not you have a prior offense, you should consult an attorney prior to arraignment so you can be prepared to address conditions of release.