What are my DUI defense options?
Many people that face a DUI charge are not aware that they have options when it comes to their DUI defense. In extremely rare cases, an individual and their attorney may use an affirmative defense. More commonly, an individual and their attorney will defend against a DUI charge by dismantling the officer’s account or the evidence against the driver.
An affirmative defense essentially says that the driver was under the influence, but a DUI charge should not be given because the driver had no choice. Driving drunk out of necessity is one way an affirmative defense can be used in a DUI charge. If a person must drive to stop something worse from happening, this defense can be used. The driver has the burden of proof to show that their decision to drive drunk was the lesser evil of their options.
If a person is forced to drive by threat and is in turn charged with DUI, then as a defense, he or she may be able to claim having been under duress while behind the wheel. Likewise, an individual may be able to claim that a DUI resulted from driving while being involuntarily intoxicated. That is to say, the individual had unknowingly consumed alcohol before getting on the road.
If a driver wishes to dismantle the case against them, their attorney may work to prove that the DUI charge came from an improper stop. This common argument suggests that the officer involved did not have probable cause to make the traffic stop that led to the DUI charge. A defense attorney may also be able to dismantle the evidence against a driver by showing that the field sobriety test or Breathalyzer was administered incorrectly.
Successfully defending yourself against a DUI charge may hinge on the evidence against you, the defense you choose, and the attorney you work with. A knowledgeable DUI defense attorney may be able to help you choose the best defense for your case.