A DUI conviction has serious consequences that can affect the rest of your life, including losing your license, jail time, and future employment. If you face a DUI charge, you should seek legal counsel immediately to fight for your rights. Experienced DUI attorney Alison M. Lopes understands the most effective strategies to defend your case. Here are some common defenses used to dismiss or lessen DUI charges.
The most common methods to prove intoxication are breathalyzer, chemical, and field sobriety tests. Since you will have your license automatically suspended for 30 days if you refuse a breathalyzer test in Florida, many people agree to it and face the consequences of registering a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or higher. However, these tests can be inaccurate and give false readings, especially if the equipment has not been maintained properly. Body temperature, gender, and medical conditions may influence how these tests register your BAC, leading to false positive results.
In addition, field sobriety tests are only 40 to 60% accurate in most cases. These tests are highly subjective and based on the law enforcement officer’s discretion during your arrest. Factors like wet roads or medical conditions may cause you to fail a field sobriety test even if you are sober.
The 4th Amendment of the US Constitution protects you from unlawful searches and seizures. This applies to traffic stops. Law enforcement must have a reasonable concern about the safety of the roadways or suspected criminal activity to pull you over. If there was no valid reason for the traffic stop, your case could be dismissed. If you were arrested at a DUI checkpoint, you could provide evidence that law enforcement did not follow proper procedures.
To be convicted of driving while under the influence, you must have been driving or been in actual physical control of the vehicle, and under the influence of an alcoholic beverage or chemical substance to the extent your normal faculties were impaired or your blood alcohol level (BAC) was greater than .08 grams of alcohol. Therefore, if the prosecutor is not able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you were driving while your normal faculties were impaired or your BAC was greater than .08, then you were not driving under the influence, and a jury would have to return a verdict of not guilty.
The circumstances surrounding your arrest may rely heavily on eyewitness testimony, which can be unreliable. In addition, law enforcement may give conflicting reports about what happened. Inconsistent testimony may cause reasonable doubt in the eyes of the jury, which could be enough for an acquittal. Alternatively, you could cast doubt on the credibility of an expert witness that may be called during the case.
If you are facing DUI charges, you deserve an experienced attorney to help fight for your rights and take any necessary steps to avoid conviction. Do not wait. Call Alison M. Lopes to discuss your case today. Contact our office or call us at 407-442-2724. We serve residents throughout Orlando and Central Florida.