If a California police officer believes that you are driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, a traffic stop will be initiated. Based on what the officer observes before and during the stop, you may be charged with drunk or impaired driving. A DUI charge could result in the loss of your ability to operate a motor vehicle as well as a loss of your current security clearances.
You’ll have a chance to explain
There is no guarantee that you’ll lose a security clearance just because you were charged with DUI. For instance, if this is your first offense, you may be granted leniency if you agree to go to rehab or take other steps to prevent future drunk driving incidents. You may also receive leniency if you have strong evidence to counter the government’s assertion that you did something wrong. For instance, if a Breathalyzer shows that you were under the legal limit, it may help your cause.
Politics might come into play
Your employer may decide to make an example out of you. Therefore, you may receive a severe punishment even if your colleagues were let off with warnings for doing exactly what you did. You may also be more likely to lose your security clearance if what you did causes negative publicity for your employer regardless of what you or others have done in the past.
If you are charged with DUI, you will have a chance to have the charge reduced or dismissed. This may happen if you can prove that there were issues with how a chemical test was conducted or that you were slurring your speech during a traffic stop because of a medical issue.