How to Beat a DWI Charge

When you are facing DWI charges, a lot is at stake. Your freedom, driving privileges, and reputation in your community – all of that can change in a moment and put your life on a more difficult path. The only thing worse than facing these consequences is doing so when you know you aren’t responsible for the charges against you. Unfortunately, though, people who were not illegally intoxicated can be – and are – arrested and charged with this serious offense.

Legal Defenses That Can Beat DWI Charges

If you are facing accusations of DWI that don’t seem fair, fortunately, you can beat these charges. Doing so isn’t easy or something to be taken for granted, however, and you will need an experienced DWI defense lawyer’s help with building and presenting your case.

Ultimately, there are three broad ways to beat DWI charges:

  • Prove you weren’t intoxicated prior to your arrest
  • Prove your driving wasn’t impaired
  • Prove that the police didn’t follow proper DWI procedures

While it may be enough to beat a DWI charge by proving one of these, a good defense will take all opportunities to attack every weakness in the case against you. Let’s discuss each of these items in more detail below.

Prove You Weren’t Intoxicated

A DWI arrest is predicated on the belief that a driver was driving while intoxicated by alcohol and/or drugs. The legal intoxication limit is 0.08% BAC, and no driver should drive while impaired by any drug – prescription or otherwise.

Upon arrest, drivers are required to submit samples of their breath, blood, and/or urine for testing. If none of these tests are conducted or show the presence of an intoxicating substance, the case against the driver can become very weak. Likewise, faulty equipment, poor testing procedures, inappropriate handling of samples, and other forms of police negligence can weaken the prosecution’s evidence for DWI.

Prove Your Driving Wasn’t Impaired

The legal BAC limit of 0.08% isn’t a magic number that can prevent all DWI arrests. Instead, this value is what legally defines the per se intoxication limit. As a consequence, it’s entirely possible for someone to be who hasn’t reached this limit to be impaired enough by alcohol that they can’t safely drive.

If you were charged with DWI despite having a BAC of less than 0.08%, chances are the case against you is based on your driving behavior. A police officer might say that saw you swerving, having difficulty maintaining a consistent speed, or any of many other odd driving behaviors that could be interpreted as intoxicated driving.

While erratic driving behavior is often a sign of intoxication, there may be alternative explanations. If you normally wear glasses and were driving without them, this can explain why you had trouble staying in your lane. Maybe you were in an unfamiliar area and were unsure of which street to turn down, which caused you to swerve a few times. You could have also been using your cell phone or were distracted by something else.

While you may not escape the consequences of a traffic citation, it’s possible to beat DWI charges if your driving behavior could be explained by a traffic violation.

Prove the Police Didn’t Follow Proper DWI Procedures

The police officer who arrested the defendant is required to follow certain procedures when arresting and charging someone with a DWI. If these procedures were not followed correctly, it may be possible to prove that the defendant’s rights were violated and therefore their charges cannot stand.

One way to prove that proper procedures weren’t followed is by examining the officer's report of the arrest. This document should contain detailed information about the events leading up to and during the arrest, as well as any results from sobriety tests. If anything is missing or inconsistent in the report, it could be used to argue that proper procedures were not followed.

The defendant’s lawyer may also be able to prove that proper procedures were not followed by cross-examining any witnesses who were present at the time of the arrest. If their testimony contradicts what is stated in the officer's report or if it indicates that improper procedures were used, then this could be used as evidence in court.

Further evidence of police negligence or misconduct may be obtained through the police officer’s bodycam, dashcam, or any cellphone videos taken by the defendant or witnesses to the arrest.

Contact The Law Office of Rene A. Flores PLLC

DWI convictions happen all the time, but it doesn’t have to happen to you. While those with strong cases against them can face the consequences of a DWI arrest, the case against you may have enough soft spots for a skilled criminal defense attorney to thoroughly examine and attack.

That’s what we do for our clients at The Law Office of Rene A. Flores PLLC. When you are facing unfair criminal allegations involving DWI, we can provide the legal support you need to protect your freedom and reputation.

Learn more about how we can help during an initial case evaluation – contact us today to learn more.

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