Getting charged with a DUI can be a devastating experience that can have a significant emotional and financial impact. Many people do not realize that when they are charged with a DUI, they have a variety of defenses that could lessen or mitigate the consequences they face.
There are many potential DUI defenses that may be effective in your case. A Washington attorney specializing in criminal defense can evaluate the facts surrounding your case and determine which defense strategy is best for you.
Possible DUI defenses
Defending against DUI charges often requires you to establish that the officer handling your case did not act in accordance with the law or with department procedures. Some of these defenses include:
- Illegal traffic stop – An officer must have reasonable suspicion that you are breaking a law to stop your vehicle in the first place. Valid traffic stops often occur when an officer sees a driver swerving, running a red light, speeding, or otherwise violating a traffic law. However, if an officer stops your vehicle based on a feeling or hunch that you are up to no good, the traffic stop was unlawful and could result in the dismissal of your charges.
- Inaccurate test results – Even when administered properly, Breathalyzer tests and field sobriety tests can yield inaccurate results for many reasons, including the motorist’s medical conditions. If the officer fails to calibrate the Breathalyzer device, fails to give proper instructions, or otherwise fails to properly administer the test, there is an even higher likelihood that the results are inaccurate. Establishing that the test was not administered properly or that the officer was not qualified to administer the test in the first place may be a solid defense strategy.
- Rising blood alcohol concentration – If too much time passed between the time of the stop and the time the Breath/blood test was administered, there could be an argument that the driver’s blood alcohol level was actually at the legal limit when he was driving, but later rose to above the legal limit.
Defending against DUI charges is not easy, but a defense attorney with years of experience can give you the best chance at avoiding a DUI conviction.