An arrest for a
DUI risks not only your driving privileges, but also your freedom. If you’ve
been accused of a DUI, you should know that your defense is an important
part of retaining your driver’s license and avoiding community service,
heavy fines, and even jail time. Learn more about the 5 most common DUI defenses.
1. No Probable Cause For a Stop
If you are pulled over by a law enforcement officer, they must have a reasonable
suspicion that you are driving while impaired in some way. Probable cause
is required before an officer can pull you over, detain you, conduct a
DUI investigation, or arrest you. If the officer does not have probable
cause, any evidence gathered by them may not be used in court. If the
prosecution is relying on this evidence to convict you, they may be unable
to secure a conviction.
2. Faulty or Unreliable Breath Tests
Breath tests are commonly used to measure the alcohol content of a person’s
breath and translate the results into the driver’s blood alcohol
content (BAC) level. There can be several factors that can affect a breath
test and make it less accurate. These factors can include:
- Improper use by the officer
- Physiological conditions, including diabetes and gastroesophageal reflux disease
- Instrument malfunction
- Failure to observe the driver for signs of intoxication prior to the test
3. Mouth Alcohol
A breath test is designed to measure the amount of alcohol contained in
the person’s alveolar air, or air from their lungs. It is possible
that it may pick up alcohol from your mouth while measuring your breath.
Alcohol soaked food or dental work can cause the level of measured alcohol
to be increased.
4. Rising Blood Alcohol
It can take between 50 minutes and 3 hours to completely absorb an alcoholic
drink. If you recently finished drinking before you got behind the wheel,
it is possible that your body will still be metabolizing your drink, and
your BAC will continue to rise until the alcohol is completely processed
by your body. When you BAC is still rising, you may have a BAC that is
much higher by the time you are finally tested than it was when you were
actually driving. It is assumed that you are at peak absorption when you
are tested, but rising blood alcohol can cause the breath test results
to be skewed. Your lawyer may argue that your breath test results aren’t
applicable to your BAC while driving.
5. Field Sobriety Tests Are Inaccurate
A popular way to evaluate impairment, field sobriety tests are notoriously
inaccurate. A number of factors can cause you to appear drunk, including:
- Officer-induced intimidation
- Poor lighting
- Bad weather
- Uneven surface
- Poor footwear
- A naturally uncoordinated driver
Start your DUI defense today. At
Hanson, Gorian, Bradford & Hanich, we can help you determine the best defenses for your case. Our Murrieta
DUI lawyers can help you protect your driving privileges and defend yourself
from your charges.
Contact our offices to request a
free initial case evaluation. Call (951) 506-6654.