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$327,897
$101,211
$1,080,822
$210,902
$812,791
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$470,491
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$57,665
$1,812,791
$2,221,801
$1,812,791
$140,897
$966,307
$1,001,211
$1,470,491
$1,057,665
$2,221,801
$2,140,897
$2,298,300
$327,897
$101,211
$1,080,822
$210,902
$812,791
$1,210,902
$80,822
$470,491
$1,298,300
$57,665
$1,812,791
$2,221,801
$1,812,791
$140,897
$966,307
$1,001,211
$1,470,491
$1,057,665
$2,221,801
$2,140,897
$2,298,300
$327,897
$101,211
$1,080,822
$210,902
$812,791
$1,210,902
$80,822
$470,491
$1,298,300
$57,665
$1,812,791
$2,221,801
$1,812,791
$140,897
$966,307
$1,001,211
$1,470,491
$1,057,665
$2,221,801
$2,140,897
$2,298,300
$327,897
$101,211
$1,080,822
$210,902
$812,791
$1,210,902
$80,822
$470,491
$1,298,300
$57,665
$1,812,791
$2,221,801
$1,812,791
$140,897
$966,307
$1,001,211
$1,470,491
$1,057,665
$2,221,801
$2,140,897
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Defending Against a DUI/DWI Charge: Common Strategies

Common DUI/DWI defenses include challenging the traffic stop legality, sobriety test accuracy, and medical conditions affecting test results.

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Facing a DUI (Driving Under the Influence) or DWI (Driving While Intoxicated) charge can be daunting, with potential legal, financial, and personal repercussions. However, not all charges lead to convictions. Various defense strategies can be employed to challenge the evidence and circumstances surrounding the arrest. This article outlines some common defense strategies used in DUI/DWI cases, offering insights into how legal professionals navigate these complex legal waters.

Challenging the Traffic Stop

One foundational defense strategy involves questioning the legality of the initial traffic stop. Law enforcement officers must have a valid reason, such as a traffic violation or reasonable suspicion of impaired driving, to stop a vehicle. If an attorney can demonstrate that the stop was unjustified, evidence obtained during the stop, including breathalyzer results and officer observations, may be deemed inadmissible in court.

Accuracy of Sobriety Testing

Field sobriety tests (FSTs) and chemical tests (breath, blood, or urine tests) are standard tools used to assess impairment. However, these tests are not infallible:

  • Field Sobriety Tests: Defense attorneys might argue that FSTs were improperly administered or that factors such as medical conditions, age, or physical disabilities affected the results.
  • Chemical Tests: The accuracy of chemical tests can be contested based on the calibration and maintenance of testing devices, the methodology of blood sample storage and analysis, or the possibility of contamination.

Rising Blood Alcohol Concentration

The defense of rising blood alcohol concentration (BAC) contends that the defendant's BAC was below the legal limit while driving but rose to an illegal level by the time the test was administered, due to the absorption of alcohol into the bloodstream over time. This defense requires expert testimony to explain how alcohol metabolism could support the defendant's claim.

Medical Conditions and External Factors

Certain medical conditions or external factors can mimic the signs of alcohol impairment or affect test results:

  • Medical Conditions: Conditions such as diabetes, hypoglycemia, or neurological disorders might produce symptoms that an officer could mistakenly attribute to alcohol or drug impairment.
  • Diet and Medication: Some diets (like keto) or medications can interfere with breathalyzer tests, producing falsely high BAC readings.

Improper Police Procedure

Violations of legal procedures and rights can serve as a defense in DUI/DWI cases. This includes failure to read Miranda rights, lack of probable cause for arrest, or improper handling of evidence. Demonstrating procedural errors may lead to the exclusion of evidence or, in some cases, the dismissal of charges.

Defending against a DUI/DWI charge requires a nuanced understanding of both the law and the science of impairment testing. While the above strategies are among the most commonly employed defenses, the effectiveness of any given approach depends on the specific circumstances of the case. Individuals facing DUI/DWI charges should consult with a qualified defense attorney who can evaluate the case's details and develop a tailored defense strategy aimed at achieving the best possible outcome.