4 Little-Known Facts That Could Affect Your DUI Case

Driving under the influence is a strict liability offence, this means that the District Attorney does not need to prove that you acted with a culpable mental state. A culpable mental state is the intention you had while driving under the influence; it does not matter if you intended to commit the crime in question or not.

4 FACTS that Can Help Your DUI Case

  • There must be at least reasonable suspicion for the traffic stop.

An officer needs reasonable suspicion for the traffic stop.  If the officer can’t provide testimony about objective facts that arise to the level of reasonable suspicion, then the evidence of the DUI after the stop can be excluded. Typically, a traffic infraction, such as speeding, is fairly easy for the officer to support, and the officer will be well-trained on how to provide such facts.  However, it is important to know that if an officer mentions a factor such as race or a “gut-feeling” as to reasons for a stop, those are not objective facts that can support reasonable suspicion.  

  • You can challenge the officer’s conclusions.  

An officer’s testimony about your performance on the field sobriety tests can rebutted or discredited.  For example, an officer’s testimony about performance on field sobriety tests can be undermined for a variety of reasons specific to your case:  If  ground wasn’t level, if the place that the tests were being administered as poorly lit or unsafe.  You can ask the officer about each aspect of every test to question whether the test administered properly.  You can suggest other reasons for adverse results, such as health conditions of the driver or other innocent reasons that could impair ability to balance, etc.

  • You can challenge the breathalyzer results

Another factor that people overlook in a DUI case is the breathalyzer test results. If a police officer has reasonable suspicion he or she can ask you to take a sobriety test.  First, you have every right to refuse to take the test, but this will result in an immediate suspension of your license.  You can question whether the machine was calibrated and maintained properly by requesting and examining those records. You can scrutinize the tester’s qualifications and whether the proper steps were taken in administering the tests.  Don’t just assume that the breathalyzer results are impeachable without first looking at the records and the steps involved.

  • Involuntary consumption is not illegal

If by any chance your consumption was not voluntary then that could provide the basis for a defense. For example, if you were handed a drink that you thought was soda pop, but was actually vodka then you can use this as a defense! It is a rare case where an involuntary consumption situation will have occurred, but if that is your circumstance then that should certainly be considered.  Keep in mind that your  driving skills could be impaired due to other influences, such as prescription medicine, which can also be used as a defense.

If you find yourself in turmoil with a DUI case, keep the above facts in perspective and equip yourself with a competent DUI attorney.