What Are The Grounds For Getting A DUI Charged Dismissed?
There is nothing as intimidating as a driver than to realize that those blue lights flashing behind you are meant for you. Many drivers are unsure of what they should do in the event they are stopped by law enforcement on suspicion of driving under the influence. Even if you have had nothing to drink it can be stressful.
When police stop a driver because they suspect he or she is driving under the influence, they will try to find enough evidence so they can charge the driver. Police need probable cause to make an arrest, however, that probable cause needs to be based on facts and not just on an officer’s suspicion.
In order to stop a vehicle, the officer needs a valid reason. Some of the commonly cited reasons include driving erratically, running a stop sign, or expired vehicle registration. If the officer stops a driver because of the way they are driving, that fact can be used as part of the probable cause for a DUI charge. A DUI lawyer may be able to get the charges dismissed if they can prove the officer did not have probable cause to stop the driver.
Once the vehicle is stopped, the officer will approach the driver, looking for evidence of alcohol and/or drug use. Some evidence that can be used against the driver includes the smell of alcohol or drugs, beer or other alcohol containers, and prescription drug bottles.
The officer will also study the driver to see if he or she exhibits any signs of being under the influence, such as red eyes, slurred speech, or the smell of alcohol on the driver.
Police will also attempt to determine if a driver is sober through different tests that are recognized by law enforcement across the country as standard sobriety tests. The officer may ask the driver to walk in a straight line, follow a moving finger or pen with their eyes, and stand on one leg. It is critical for every driver to know that they have the right to refuse to participate in these tests without suffering any consequences.
The next test the officer may request the driver take is a breath test which will measure their blood alcohol content. A driver can also refuse to take this test, too. However, in many states, refusing to take this test may be grounds for license suspension even if it is proven later on in criminal court that the driver was not under the influence. This is allowed under states’ implied consent laws.
Some states have adopted laws that address those drivers who refuse to submit to BAC testing which forces drivers to submit to testing via a warrant. Police are able to obtain an electronic warrant on their mobile devices right at the scene of the traffic stop, avoiding the risk of the driver sobering up before a paper warrant could be obtained.
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