It’s only natural to assume that if someone is charged with drunk driving, both their short-and long-term futures are damaged. This common perception is perpetually reinforced by the celebrity mugshots and daily media coverage that DUIs and DWIs receive. These individuals are portrayed as problematic citizens who deserve to be punished for their transgression.
But in many cases, this narrative doesn’t fit. Plenty of people who are accused of drunk driving violations are good, honest, hard-working people who made a mistake — and they shouldn’t be defined by that one mistake. And more to the point, just because they are accused of a drunk driving offense, it does not mean their future is forever ruined.
There are numerous ways that an individual accused of a DUI or DWI can defend against the charges filed against them. The prosecution has to have enough evidence to prove their case, but the defense can also utilize any discrepancies or rights violations that occurred with the DUI stop. For example:
- Did the police have probable cause?
- Did they administer any breath or blood tests properly?
- Was the equipment used for said tests accurate?
- Once the evidence was gathered, did the chain of custody for that evidence follow proper protocols?
In total: did the police act in a legal, proper, and compliant manner? If they didn’t, the DUI case against an individual could collapse.
Similarly, there are circumstances relating to the accused individual that could help successfully defend a DUI charge. Was the defendant coerced or forced into driving while drunk? Was the defendant unaware of his or her intoxication, possibly because of a spiked drink? Did the accused person drive drunk out of necessity — for example, because of a medical emergency?
Depending on the circumstances, a strong defense can be made to combat the DUI charges brought against a person. This could lead to dismissal of the charges or a lesser punishment. If you or a loved one has been charged with a DUI, don’t throw in the towel–contact an experienced criminal defense attorney to find out if an answer to one of the questions posed above could revive your future.