Your DUI arrest may have left you confused, angry, frustrated and may be even scared. Starting to find out more about your rights and defense options, however, can help assuage your concerns. It can also help you start positioning yourself for a strong defense and a favorable outcome to your case.
To help you get started, below are some questions to answer regarding your DUI stop and arrest. The answers to these questions can reveal information that could be important to your future defense case.
After a DUI Arrest, Answer these Questions
Did you take any medications before driving? Or do you have any medical conditions that could affect your performance on BAC tests? – For instance, did you take a prescription or over-the-counter medication that may have made you appear impaired even though you may not have been? Or do you live with GERD or acid reflux – both conditions that can render false positives on breathalyzers?
If the answer to any of these is yes, there may be room to challenge prosecutors’ evidence of alleged impairment.
- Do you know why you were pulled over by the officer? (If you were arrested at a checkpoint, skip to Q4) – How had you been driving prior to being pulled over? Did you commit another traffic infraction or had you been driving safely and abiding by the law before the stop?
All of these questions are getting at the probable cause for the DUI stop. No probable cause can open up the door for a dismissal of DUI charges.
- Did the officer tell you why (s)he pulled you over? – Again, this is getting at the issue of probable cause if you were not initially aware of why you pulled over and/or you had been complying with the law prior to being stopped.
If the officer cannot articulate what the probable cause was later in court (when the DUI case is being adjudicated), again, this could be a strong point for a defense case.
- What was your interaction like with the officer? What was said and what was the tone of the conversation after giving the officer your license/registration/proof of insurance? – Did you admit to having had any alcohol? Did you admit to being drunk or impaired? Did you have difficultly speaking or answering the questions?
What is said – as well as how it is said – at this point in a DUI stop can all provide evidence that prosecutors may try to use to establish impairment. For instance, if you admitting to having alcohol, you were slurring and/or you didn’t seem to understand the officer’s questions/directions, this could all be used against you later. Knowing this now can help you identify what your options are for countering these allegations.
- Did you take the field sobriety test? – If so, what tests were administered? How do you believe you performed? Did anything else noteworthy occur during this testing?
Believe it or not, field sobriety tests are not always administered – or evaluated – according to standard methods. In other words, these tests can be more subjective than people realize, and answering the above questions can start to clarify whether there may have been issues with your field sobriety test and/or the “failure” you may have gotten on it.
- Did you submit to BAC/chemical testing? – If so, what type of testing? What occurred during this testing? How soon after you were stopped was this testing performed? Did you consume anything, regurgitate and/or belch at any point between when you were stopped and when you submitted to BAC testing?
Whether or not you submitted to BAC testing, as well as what kind of testing you submitted to (if so) and what occurred during the “test,” are all issues that will all impact the direction and nature of a DUI defense case. Parsing out these particulars may reveal some strong defense points (such as testing mistakes or potentially unreliable BAC test results).
If you have answered all of these questions about your DUI stop and arrest and you are ready to find out just whether or how it could help your defense, contact one of our Broomfield DUI defense lawyers today.
Contact a Broomfield DUI Attorney at The Datz Law Firm
If you or a loved one has been charged with a DUI offense in Colorado, contact a Broomfield DUI attorney at The Datz Law Firm for superior defense representation. Call us at (720) 256-2404, or email us using the contact form at the top of this page.