The first thing that I do when someone calls me or comes into my office regarding a DUI/OVI/DWI, is ask what happened. I get the facts beginning with the initial stop when pulled over by law enforcement. Where it was, any search that was performed, any testing taken, and any and all conversation that took place. I will review paper work that was given by the officer combine it with all the facts, apply the law and begin building the defense.
The Stop: Were their any violations of my client’s constitutional rights. Did law enforcement have reasonable suspicion that a traffic offense was committed? A person’s Fourth Amendment Rights are that he can not be pulled over from a tip or a hunch. There must be a specific fact to support the decision to stop. If there isn’t – anything that occurred after the initial stop can not be used as evidence.
Breathalyzer: Often these machines are not calibrated properly before or even after it is taken resulting in an invalid test. BAC test results over the legal limit are usually presumed to be proof of intoxication. BUT, I will challenge the conclusiveness of the results by showing all the irregularities in the administration of it or issues the equipment may have.
Field Sobriety Tests: Were they explained and demonstrated properly. I have had clients who took these and failed because they didn’t understand what law enforcement was asking. The way it was explained was meant to confuse the client, setting him up for failure.
Miranda Warnings: They MUST be read as part of the process. If they were not read, certain evidence will be excluded at trial.
Once a person is arrested it is in their best interest to have the criminal defense attorney present before speaking about or disclosing anything other than license, registration and proof of insurance. There should be no oral or written statement and nothing should be signed.
Be sure to have and keep all the documents and evidence that may have been gathered during the arrest. It will be useful in defending your situation.
Just TWO things must be done: The prosecution MUST prove that the person arrested drove and was under the influence.
The Bottom Line: It is confusing, embarrassing and frightening when you have been arrested for a DUI/OVI/DWI. Please know that, as a criminal defense attorney, I have seen it all and there is nothing to be embarrassed about. I know that good people make mistakes and exercise poor judgment at times. We are only human. I will discover all the evidence that the prosecutor has in the case and then evaluate it all. If you are pulled over, don’t take any tests and remain silent except to call your lawyer. Put my number in your phone: 513-260-2099