It’s essential that you look at your defense options if police officers arrest you and you’re then charged with driving under the influence (DUI). Drivers often underestimate the consequences a conviction or guilty plea can inspire and only later realize the effect it has on them and their families.
The following are some of the most useful DUI defenses to consider as you work with your legal team to craft a strong strategy.
The initial stop was unjustified
Police officers must be able to explain why they stopped you. If it was outside a sobriety checkpoint, they need to show what gave them reasonable suspicion that you were committing an offense. If at a checkpoint, they must show how they chose you instead of someone else to check – unless they checked every driver.
The test result was wrong
Breath-testing machines are not infallible, especially if the police force does not respect a required calibration schedule. As for field sobriety tests, those contain a huge opportunity for error. Firstly, there is room for drivers to misunderstand what the officer wants them to do. Secondly, factors such as a driver’s disability, medication or nervousness could cause them to perform poorly even when sober.
The police made chain-of-custody errors
If you took a blood or urine test rather than a breath test, the accuracy relies on the proper handling of the samples. If yours got mixed up with someone else’s, you will get the wrong result. To prevent this, the police must document the entire journey of the evidence, and if they cannot, a court may dismiss it.
Other defenses could work, too, but it all depends on your unique situation. With appropriate legal help, you can explore all your options to fight a DUI charge where possible.