Accused drivers facing drunk driving charges need to know who they can defend themselves against the charges they are facing because of how serious the penalties and consequences of a DUI are. There are different options for defending against DUI charges depending on the situation which is why accused drivers need to know what they are.
Legality of the stop
In order for the traffic stop to be legal, authorities must have probable cause to pull the driver over and stop them. Accused drivers should understand what this means to determine if it will be part of their criminal defense strategy.
Breathalyzer tests must meet certain requirements to be considered reliable and accurate. If the breathalyzer test in question was not routinely maintained and calibrated according to a set schedule and at set intervals, it may be possible to challenge the reliability of the results it produces.
Additionally, the police officer administering the breathalyzer test must be trained to do so and administer the test in accordance with the training they have received.
It is also important that the accused driver’s bodily functions do not interfere with the test results.
Field Sobriety test
Field sobriety tests must be administered according to the appropriate training received by the police officer for field sobriety tests. Field sobriety tests can produce questionable results which may be a cause for challenging them especially if not conducted properly.
A category of defenses referred to as affirmative defenses may apply in certain limited situations. Affirmative defenses can include duress, necessity, mistake of fact, entrapment or involuntary intoxication. Accused drivers should know if any of these defenses apply to them.
A strong DUI defense to the charges the accused driver is facing is vital given the high personal and professional costs associated with drunk driving charges. Accused drivers should be in a position to offer a strong criminal defense strategy and should know how to do that as part of their criminal defense rights.