Driving under the influence (DUI) is a serious criminal offense that can have severe consequences, including license suspension, fines, and even jail time. When facing a DUI charge, it is essential to have a competent and experienced DUI lawyer from calgaryduilawyer.ca on your side. These lawyers can help you avoid a conviction or minimize the penalties associated with a DUI charge. To accomplish this goal, they’ll use various defenses to get you off the hook. Here are three defenses they’ll use:
1. Challenging The Validity Of The Traffic Stop
Law enforcement officers must have a reasonable suspicion that a driver has committed a traffic violation or is driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol to make a traffic stop. If a DUI lawyer can successfully argue that the officer did not have a reasonable suspicion, then any evidence obtained during the traffic stop may be inadmissible in court.
For example, if a driver is pulled over for failing to use a turn signal and the officer subsequently arrests them for DUI, a lawyer may argue that the officer did not have a reasonable suspicion to make the traffic stop. If the court agrees with the DUI lawyer’s argument, then any evidence obtained during the stop, such as field sobriety test results, breathalyzer tests, and statements made by the driver, may be suppressed, making it challenging for the prosecution to secure a conviction.
2. Contesting The Validity Of The Breathalyzer Or Blood Test Results
Breathalyzers and blood tests are used to measure a driver’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) levels, which are used as evidence to prove that the driver was under the influence of alcohol while driving.
However, a breathalyzer test can produce false positives if the driver has recently used mouthwash or cough syrup containing alcohol. Similarly, blood tests can produce inaccurate results if the blood sample was not collected correctly or mishandled during transport or testing.
If this is the case, a DUI lawyer can successfully challenge the validity of the breathalyzer or blood test results, weakening the prosecution’s case.
3. Arguing That The Driver Was Not Under The Influence
To achieve this type of argument, a DUI lawyer can present evidence showing that the driver’s behavior or appearance was inconsistent with that of someone under the influence of drugs or alcohol. For example, the lawyer may argue that the driver’s speech was not slurred, that their eyes were not bloodshot, and that they exhibited no other signs of impairment.
The DUI lawyer may also present evidence showing that the driver’s BAC levels were within the legal limit or that the driver was using prescription medication that may have affected their ability to perform field sobriety tests or produce a breath sample. If the lawyer’s evidence is compelling enough, the prosecution’s case may collapse, resulting in the charges being dropped or dismissed.
4. Not Being Given A Chance To Contact A Lawyer
During a DUI investigation, a suspect has the right to contact an attorney, and the police should allow them to do so. However, their rights may have been violated if they are not allowed to do so. In some cases, the police may deny a suspect’s request to contact an attorney or not inform them of their right to do so. If this happens, the suspect’s DUI lawyer can argue that the police violated their client’s constitutional rights, getting the charges against them dismissed.
Denying a suspect the opportunity to contact an attorney during a DUI investigation can also impact the validity of any evidence gathered. For example, if a suspect was not given the opportunity to contact an attorney, any statements they made during the investigation may be inadmissible in court. This could weaken the prosecution’s case and make it easier for the DUI lawyer to get your case dropped.
5. Not Being In Actual Physical Control Of The Vehicle
A lawyer can help prove you were not driving a vehicle during your arrest. This is a crucial element in any DUI case, as the prosecution must show that you were operating or had control of the car while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. If the lawyer can demonstrate that you were not in physical control of the vehicle, the case against you may be dismissed or the charges reduced.
Even if the evidence against you is strong, the prosecution may be willing to reduce the charges or offer a plea deal in exchange for a guilty plea. A skilled DUI lawyer can negotiate on your behalf to get the best possible outcome for your case. This could include reduced fines, community service instead of jail time, or a shorter license suspension period.
6. Emergency Doctrine
When facing a DUI charge, there are certain circumstances where you may be released from criminal liability, such as if you acted out of necessity due to an imminent emergency. You may not be convicted of a DUI if you show that you had no other option but to drive under the influence to avoid harm or danger.
As it applies to DUI cases, the emergency doctrine is evaluated using an objective standard. This means that the court will consider whether a reasonable person, acting with ordinary care, would have taken the same actions in the same circumstances. If your actions were deemed reasonable under this objective standard, then you may not be convicted of a DUI, even if your actions were not the safest course of action.
It is important to note that the emergency doctrine is not a defense that can be used in all situations. The emergency must have been sudden and imminent, leaving you with no option but to drive under the influence. Additionally, you must have acted with a reasonable level of care and not put others in danger while driving. It is also important to remember that each case is unique, and the application of the emergency doctrine will depend on the specific circumstances of your case.
Ultimately, the key to success lies in having a competent and experienced lawyer who understands the nuances of DUI law and can provide you with a robust defense. If you or someone you know is facing a DUI charge, do not hesitate to seek legal help and explore all possible defense options.