If you were arrested for DUI in King County, Washington by either the Washington State Patrol or King County Sheriff your case will likely be filed into the King County District Court system. Depending upon which precinct the arresting trooper or deputy works out of your case will either be filed in the West Division at the Seattle Courthouse, the South Division at the Kent Regional Justice Center, or the East Division at the Redmond Courthouse. The filing of your DUI in the King County District Court system means that the prosecutors working on your case will be King County Deputy Prosecutors and the judges will be elected King County District Court Judges. If you were arrested by a King County Sheriff in Shoreline, Maple Valley, Enumclaw, or Burien, your DUI charge may be filed by one of those municipalities or in King County District Court. If you were arrested by a city police office in this county, your case would most likely be filed into the municipal court of that city.
King County DUI Filings
King County DUI cases usually are filed within two days to six weeks of arrest. The caveat here is that historically, the King County Prosecutors have been known to delay the filing of DUI cases for up to 6 months and sometimes more than a year. A good reason for this has never been given though since 2013, King County has seemed to be much more efficient in its filings. Though it is always a good idea to consult with a DUI lawyer as soon as possible after arrest, don’t assume that because it has been more than a month your case won’t be filed. If the allegation is of a breath or blood test near or above the legal limit or of a refusal to submit to testing, the case will more than likely eventually be filed. And in the case of blood test cases, delays of up to two months can be expected while the Washington State Patrol tests the blood.
King County DUI Judges
In the three divisions of the King County District Court that hear DUI cases there are a total of 17 elected judges. No two judges are exactly alike and sometimes there are significant differences in the manner in which they treat defendants at arraignment, rule on legal motions and their overall demeanor and disposition. Knowing who your judge may be and what their predilections are, in advance or your hearing, can be vitally important.