The penalties for drunk driving whether the charge is for DWI or DUI are life changing. If you have been arrested on suspicion of driving drunk and charged with DWI or DUI you may decide to fight the charges after consultation with a Plano, Texas DWI/DUI criminal defense attorney.
Individuals that challenge DWI or DUI charges rely on three categories of defenses:
- Defenses related to driving
- Defenses related to the arrest
- Challenging the arresting officer’s observations regarding the suspected drunk driver’s behavior.
The next significant category of available defenses to DWI or DUI charges involve defenses related to breath, blood, urine and saliva tests. These defenses are not reviewed in this post.
There are no guarantees of success using any of the defenses reviewed below. A challenge to the charge may assist with a reduction of charges, maintaining a driver’s license pending case resolution, acquittal after trial, or nothing. To understand how your circumstances and case facts relate to the law in Plano, Texas and can be resolved consult a DWI/DUI criminal defense attorney immediately following a DWI or DUI arrest.
Defenses to Driving
One of the elements the prosecution must prove to successfully obtain a drunk driving conviction is that the suspected drunk driver was driving the car. Examples of defenses to driving are as follows.
- The suspected drunk driver was not actually driving the vehicle at the time the alleged DWI or DUI offense was committed; or
- The arresting police officer did not observe the suspected drunk driver driving at the time the alleged DWI or DUI offense was committed.
Defenses to driving are fact intensive and may need bolstering by witnesses at scene of the arrest. The facts at issue are particular to an individual’s case. Consult an attorney regarding the availability of defenses to driving in your case.
Defenses Related to the Arrest
Prior to addressing the elements of a drunk driving charge, the arrest is examined to ensure that proper protocols and procedures were followed at time of the arrest. The following defenses related to the arrest are more commonly understood by the public at large because of the prominent role they play in police dramas and television shows like Law and Order.
- The arresting officer did not have probable cause or legal justification to stop the vehicle, detain the suspected drunk driver, and make an arrest for drunk driving.
- At time of the arrest, proper procedures were not followed, like the administration of the breathalyzer exam or visual field testing.
- Miranda Warning not read to suspected drunk driver at time of the arrest.
A successful challenge to an arrest leads to the exclusion of any evidence obtained following the stop and cannot be used by the prosecution in proving that the suspected drunk driver was driving drunk.
Challenging the Arresting Officer’s Observations
The last category reviewed in this post is challenging the arresting officer’s observations. The police officer’s version of the events leading up to the arrest and subsequent arrest may be challenged by
- Introducing individuals or witnesses to the arrest that support the drunk driver’s version of the facts.
- Introducing another explanation for the suspected drunk driver’s appearance or behavior unrelated to the consumption or use of alcohol or drugs.
DWI Criminal Defense Attorney in Plano, Texas
If you are facing DWI criminal charges, without delay, consult with an experienced DWI attorney. Kimberly Griffin Tucker and her team are ready to assist you resolve your DWI case. Call (214) 445-6336 to schedule an immediate free consultation. Reach us 24 hours per day via phone and email. Our Plano, Texas office is only a phone call away.