San Diego Surgeon Might Lose Medical License After DUI Conviction

San Diego Surgeon Might Lose Medical License After DUI Conviction

San Diego neurosurgeon Rex Lloyd Patrick Rhoten is facing serious repercussions due to a DUI conviction. Rhoten crashed his Tesla into trees while driving to work on Feb. 20, 2016. Three months later, he was convicted of a DUI, and now, he might lose his medical license.

The Details

When police came onto the scene of Rhoten’s wreck, they noticed signs of intoxication, including slurred speech and red, watery eyes. They subjected him to four field sobriety tests and tested his blood alcohol level. The results showed that his BAC was at 0.26. That is over three times the legal limit in the state of California.

The neurosurgeon resigned from his position at Kaiser Permanente, but that is far from the end of this story.

The California Attorney General Steps In

It’s never good when the California attorney general intercedes in a legal matter. After reviewing the case, the attorney general filed what is called a “Matter of Accusation” with California’s medical board. The filing claims that Rhoten demonstrated unprofessional conduct by driving drunk and posed a risk to the public.

Rhoten can still file a defense to the filing. Then, the board will have 15 days to set a hearing. At that point, it will likely be determined if the neurosurgeon will lose his license to practice medicine in California.

What to Do If You’re Pulled Over

You might not have as much to lose as Dr. Rhoten, but it is still important that you follow some steps to protect yourself if you’re involved in a DUI traffic stop. Although it’s important to be courteous during a traffic stop, you should never admit to anything. It is much more difficult for your San Diego DUI defense team to make a case for you if you have already admitted guilt. That means you shouldn’t even admit to drinking a single glass of wine or beer. Something as inconsequential as that could be used against you in a court of law. Keep your mouth sealed when it comes to details about what you were doing that day or night.

In addition, do not consent to roadside sobriety tests. These tests are difficult for even sober people to pass. If you fail, the officer will have probable cause to test your breath, blood, or urine for alcohol.

California does have an implied consent law on the books, so if you are arrested lawfully, you can be required to take a BAC test. Your license will be suspended for a year if you refuse to do so. If you are required to take the test, contact a DUI lawyer for additional help. The police are trying to build a case against you, and you need outside help.

Dr. Rhoten’s case might be on the extreme end of the spectrum, but anyone who is arrested for a DUI is in some sort of danger. Keep your mouth closed, except for your call to your lawyer. It will be the smartest call you’ve ever made.

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