3 Potential Defenses Against Drunk Driving Charges

Anyone who has been charged with drunk driving is likely to wonder what legal defenses they may have. Here are three possibilities a DUI attorney will usually want to explore.

Illegal Traffic Stop

Normally, a drunk driving attorney will try to work through the legal logic of a charge from the beginning. In the majority of cases, the process started with a traffic stop. The police can't randomly pull folks over without cause, and that means there has to be an initial reason.

When the charges are filed, the cop usually files an accompanying affidavit explaining what they saw that justified the stop. This might be something like a broken taillight or witnessing the driver repeatedly crossing the center lines of the road. If a DUI attorney can show that the stop was unjustified, they can then ask the judge to dismiss the case.

Procedural Issues

Once an officer initiates a stop, they also have to follow a set of established procedures. This usually involves asking questions, observing your condition, and checking out the condition of the vehicle. They do this to work their way from reasonable suspicion to probable cause, and then they'll finally charge you if they have enough evidence. For this reason, DUI stops tend to go from talking with the driver to conducting a physical test of motor skills. A cop then will administer a field breath test and charge the driver if they fail it.

Failure to follow the procedures is grounds for a DUI attorney to ask for the dismissal of a case. A drunk driving attorney will usually demand discovery of video and audio surveillance footage from cameras in a police cruiser or on an officer's body to show what happened.

Technological Issues

The police depend heavily on technology to prosecute driving offenses. In addition to breath tests, the cops also use radar guns to find speeders and blood tests to check for intoxicants other than alcohol. As with all technologies, these systems can and do sometimes have bugs.

A cop must document which equipment they used during a stop. Your DUI attorney can then check the maintenance records for the equipment, and they also can cross-reference the model numbers against known recalls. For example, a specific breathalyzer system might have a history of producing false positives. Once more, the standard remedy is for your lawyer to inform the court of the issue and ask for the dismissal of the charges.

For more information contact a law office like Cohen Law Offices, LLC.