A conviction for driving while intoxicated (DWI) could impact both your short-term and long-term future. Therefore, if the police stop you and charge you with DWI, it is vital that you take all available steps to defend yourself.
Saying, “I didn’t do it,” or “The police are wrong,” is unlikely to prevail in court. To overcome a DWI charge, you need to think tactically. Here are three questions to help you focus on the important issues:
Why did the police stop you?
Why were you pulled over in the first place? What led the police to believe that you were violating the law? Why did the officer ask you to complete roadside sobriety tests or ask for a Breathalyzer test? Were their assumptions reasonable?
How reliable is the evidence?
If the police base the charge on a Breathalyzer test, you need to research the particular machine they used. Do they have the records to show they have properly maintained and calibrated it? Even if they do, no Breathalyzer is 100% accurate and user experience can affect your outcomes.
What other reasons could have caused you to fail a Breathalyzer test?
Your diet or a medical condition such as diabetes could have influenced the results of your Breathalyzer test. Alternatively, you may take prescription medication, which can cause the machine to read over the limit. If the charge is based on failing a field sobriety test, your footwear or bad leg might have made it hard to walk in a straight line. Maybe you did not understand the police officer’s instructions, or perhaps you were so worried about the consequences of failing the test that you could not focus.
Fines, license suspensions, jail time and ignition interlocks might all be avoidable if you can find the right line of defense to a DWI charge.