Getting arrested and accused of drunk driving can have instant and severe consequences on your life -- even before a conviction occurs. You could be suspended from your job or suffer other job consequences, you could suffer from a smeared reputation amongst your friends and you might experience difficulties in your family relationships.
That said, if a conviction happens, the consequences of a DUI become even more severe, regarding criminal penalties and suspended driving privileges. When the DUI charge also involves a fatal or injurious accident, a conviction could result in prison time.
Examples of drunk driving defense strategies
Due to the negative consequences associated with a DUI conviction, you may want to employ one of the following DUI defense strategies if it applies to your situation:
- Defense of the improper stop: Police must have a valid reason for pulling you over. If an officer pulls you over without a good reason, and then discovers that you were too drunk to drive, your DUI charges may not be valid.
- Issues relating to your field sobriety test: Special rules and regulations apply to the way officers must administer a field sobriety test. If the officer doesn't follow those rules, your field sobriety test results might not be valid. Furthermore, extraneous circumstances may have existed that prevented your field sobriety test from being accurate.
- Issues relating to your Breathalyzer test: Just like the field sobriety test, rules and regulations apply to a breathalyzer exam. For example, officers must observe you for a specific amount of time before they can give you the Breathalyzer test. There could also be issues relating to the calibration of the Breathalyzer device and other factors that might render the test result inaccurate.
- Rising blood alcohol concentrations: A driver might drink two beers, get behind the wheel, and still be sober enough to drive. However, as the alcohol gets absorbed by the bodily system over time, the driver might eventually become too drunk to drive. This relates to the theory of rising blood alcohol concentrations. According to this theory, if police wait too long to test your sobriety -- either through a breath test, urine test, blood test or field test -- it could render the test results invalid.
Can accused persons defend against all kinds of DUI charges?
Many drivers accused of DUI will not have the ability to defend themselves to try and get their charges dropped or dismissed, especially if the prosecution has compiled strong evidence against them. However, even if conviction is likely, criminal defense strategies might still help in getting the accused person's punishments reduced significantly.