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How do lawyers defend against drunk driving?

It might have happened while you were driving home from a party late at night. It might have happened while you were driving your children to school in the morning. In fact, a drunk driving arrest can happen at any time you're operating your vehicle. However, just because you get arrested and accused of this crime does not mean that a criminal court will find you guilty. Until the prosecution can prove you were drunk behind the wheel beyond a reasonable doubt, you will have every opportunity to defend yourself.

Although every drunk driving defense strategy will be different depending on the circumstances of how the arrest occurred, here are a two ways that DUI defendants might try to fight their charges:

Defenses related to police procedure: There are many things that can go wrong in the moments preceding a driver's arrest. Police have rules and procedures they need to follow, and failure to follow these rules could invalidate an arrest. Important questions to ask in this regard include: Did the police have a viable reason to pull over the driver? Did police administer the field sobriety or breathalyzer test in a lawful way? If the answer to these questions is "no," then it could reveal a strategy to defend against the charges.

Defenses related to the accuracy of tests: A lot can go wrong when police administer a breathalyzer test that results in inaccurate results. Perhaps the Breathalyzer device wasn't calibrated the right way. Maybe police didn't wait the right amount of time before administering the Breathalyzer test. As for blood tests, it's possible that lab technicians didn't handle the sample appropriately. Defendants might be able to reveal various facts and evidence that show various test results were erroneous.

Every DUI defense will be different. However, the more defendants familiarize themselves with their legal rights and options, the better chances they'll have of achieving a favorable result in their defense proceedings.

Source: LawInfo, "Defending a drunk driver hit and run charge," accessed Feb. 16, 2018

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