Some Facts About DUI Charges
If you or someone you know is charged with driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while intoxicated (DWI), it is important to keep in mind that this is rarely an open-and-shut case. DUI attorneys will tell you that there are many types of errors which may have been committed at the time of the arrest that can be used to mount a good defense and beat a DUI or DWI charge. Whether you were actually drunk or not, or if any error was committed, your first move should be to get legal representation for your case.
Is the Breathalyzer Test Infallible?
Most people think that if you register blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08 or higher on a breathalyzer test, all is lost and you might as well just plead guilty, even if you don’t think you were drunk at all. The truth, however, is quite different. Defective equipment, some medical conditions, and high-protein diets can all lead to a false-positive BAC reading. And even if none of these conditions are present, if you were detained without probable cause (you weren’t driving erratically, behaving suspiciously, or the subject of any outstanding warrants), the arrest and subsequent test are not legally admissible in court.
Options to Consider
A DUI charge means different things for different people. If you are a first-time offender, then it is considered a misdemeanor, and the judge will most likely not keep you in jail.
Another thing you will have to discuss with your lawyer if you decide to go to trial is whether to ask for a jury trial or a trial by judge. In general, a judge is more likely to be lenient with first-time offenders. Otherwise, a jury is usually easier to convince than a case-hardened judge. Let your lawyer have all the facts; DUI attorneys will make an accurate assessment of your situation and how to best handle the situation.