Those who have been accused of drunk driving in Florida face penalties that include the suspension of their driver’s license and jail time. A conviction for a driving under the influence (DUI) offense can also be very expensive.
Judges typically impose criminal fines after a DUI conviction. There are often also licensing expenses associated with impaired driving offenses. People may have to pay to install an ignition interlock device in their vehicles, which can cost hundreds of dollars. Finally, drivers can anticipate paying far more for insurance after a DUI conviction. As if all of that weren’t bad enough, the offense creates a criminal record that can lead to fewer opportunities related to one’s career.
Many people accused of impaired driving assert that they did not break the law but worry about how they could defend themselves, so they simply plead guilty. Utilizing one or more of the following strategies may be a smarter – and more affordable – approach under certain circumstances.
Challenging the legality of a stop
Traffic stops are quite an imposition on the average individual period they can make someone late for work and otherwise cause personal hardship. Police officers therefore typically need probable cause to suspect a significant traffic infraction before pulling someone over. If the traffic stop itself was illegal, then a defense attorney could potentially fight the inclusion of certain evidence in the court proceedings.
Explaining what looked like impairment
Maybe someone was so nervous in front of a police officer that their behavior seemed impaired to the officer. Perhaps the person arrested has a health issue that may have affected their motor function during field sobriety tests or the result produced during a chemical breath test. Those with a personal explanation for the evidence the state has could use that as the basis of a defense strategy.
Questioning the evidence itself
There have been increasing concerns about the accuracy of chemical breath tests and the prevalence of false positives. People can sometimes raise questions about the testing either by challenging the science or the police department’s maintenance of a testing unit.
Different scenarios require different approaches when it comes to mounting a strong defense. Learning more about the strategies people use to fight DUI charges with the help of an experienced legal professional can help those who hope to avoid a criminal conviction.