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When can I win a drunk driving defense?

Before discussing the situations in which you could win your DUI defense, it's important to address the misconception that – if you're crafty and clever enough during your legal process – you can always achieve a verdict of not guilty.

However, it's important to keep in mind that lawyers are not miracle workers. Sometimes, when a conviction is likely, the best a defendant can achieve is a plea bargain agreement, in which the defendant pleads guilty in exchange for a reduction in punishment. A reduction in punishment can serve to make the defendant's life a great deal easier, so even if you get convicted, there is the potential to receive tremendous value from the criminal defense process.

Examples of 3 winning DUI defenses

What follows are several example scenarios in which a defendant could win a DUI defense:

When police didn't have a good reason to stop you: Police need an actual reason to stop you. If they pull you over, simply because of the color of your skin, and then they smell alcohol on your breath, this will not result in a valid or lawful DUI arrest. In fact, many defendants have successfully gotten their charges dismissed on the grounds of an unlawful stop. Police need to see that you were speeding, drove through a red light, failed to maintain your lane, or committed some other driving infraction before they have the legal right to pull you over.

When police fail to properly administer a field sobriety test: Rules and guidelines apply to the way police must administer a field sobriety test. If the arresting officer makes a mistake regarding your field sobriety test. It could serve to render the test invalid. Accuracy issues may also come into play – especially when they relate to the horizontal gaze nystagmus (HGN) test. This test involves the officer observing your eye movements, but there are many ways that a defendant can question the test's accuracy.

Police made mistakes regarding your Breathalyzer test: Breathalyzer tests are known to have accuracy problems. Also, there could be issues relating to the calibration and/or accurate functioning of the particular Breathalyzer test device that police used to examine your blood alcohol content. In addition, officers may need to observe you for 15 minutes before administering your breathalyzer test. When defendants can cast doubt on the accuracy of a Breathalyzer test, it can help their cases tremendously.

Stay realistic and you'll do well in your criminal defense

Measuring whether you have achieved a favorable result in your DUI defense is not necessarily a question of whether you get convicted. It's a question of what you can reasonably expect to achieve given the factual circumstance surrounding your arrest and charges. Ultimately, when criminal defendants can stay realistic, they can achieve much better results than if they stubbornly cling to unrealistic expectations.

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