As experienced DUI defense attorneys, we hear this question a lot. After all, it can be easy to feel like you don’t have a lot of options when you are facing drunk driving charges and two impending DUI cases (one with the court and another with the Division of Motor Vehicles).
You should NOT, however, simply plead guilty to the charges you face without first speaking to an attorney. This is because you may have a number of defense options, and a seasoned defense lawyer can inform you of these options and your best choices for moving forward.
DUI Defense Options: What You Should Know
When it comes to DUI cases, the defense options available will vary according to:
- The probable cause for the DUI stop
- What occurred during the DUI stop
- The nature and results of the BAC testing
- Additional factors.
In particular, some of the more common and effective options for defending people against DUI charges include (but are by no means limited to) arguing that:
- There was no probable cause for the traffic stop – Not only do officers have to have probable cause to pull you over for suspicion of DUI (or any other alleged traffic violation), but they also have to document just what this probable cause was in their DUI police report. If they don’t and they can’t affirm what the probable cause was later, the entire case can be challenged, and it may be possible to get the charges reduced, if not dismissed.
- An officer did not administer the BAC test appropriately – This can be a strong defense because, when an officer fails to administer a breath test at least 20 minutes after the stop or uses a non-approved and/or non-calibrated device to perform this testing, it can be argued that the results are, at best, questionable and, at worst, completely unreliable. Challenging the accuracy of this testing is most effective with the help of a skilled lawyer.
- An officer violated the accused person’s rights at some point – Did an officer take a sample without the accused person’s consent? Or did (s)he search the accused person’s property without probable cause or a warrant? Or did (s)he fail to read the accused his or her Miranda rights? Any such violation (or others) can also weaken prosecutors’ cases, and believe it or not, cops regularly make the mistake of violating people’s rights during DUI stops.
- BAC test results are unreliable for other reasons – If blood samples were submitted for BAC testing, looking into how these samples were taken, transported and analyzed by the lab can provide more options for DUI defense cases, as any of these issues can result in contaminated samples, questionable BAC results and, ultimately, dismissals of charges in some cases.
- There is insufficient evidence of impairment – Aside from BAC test results, other “evidence” of impairment may be lacking or inconclusive, and pointing this out is another viable option for many DUI cases. For instance, the results of field sobriety testing can be refuted by proving how subjective these tests really are in the field. Similarly, apparent signs of intoxication – like red, watery eyes – can be explained by other factors, such as allergies or other health conditions.
So, the bottom line is that you should not just give up when you are accused of a DUI. Fighting back can be the key to resolving your case as favorably as possible and minimizing the possible negative impacts your DUI charges could end up having.
Contact a Colorado Springs DUI Lawyer at Kohn Law Firm
Have you or a loved one been charged with drunk driving? If so, a Colorado Springs DUI lawyer at Kohn Law Firm is ready to aggressively defend your rights and help you bring your case to a successful resolution.
To learn more about how we can help you, set up a free initial consultation with us by calling us at (719) 328-9555 or by emailing us using the contact form at the top of this page.
From our offices in Colorado Springs, we represent clients throughout the Pikes Peak region and Colorado.