Have you been arrested for Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI) or Driving Under the Influence (DUI) in Colorado? If you intend to fight the charges filed against you, your lawyer should sift through your case and consider all the possible defenses.
With a sound defense against your DUI allegations, your lawyer might be able to dismiss or reduce the charges levied against you. A strong defense can also help you avoid being stripped of your driving privileges and other basic rights. Note that DUI is a complicated matter and defenses to such cases are practically limitless. Most defenses are associated with the following areas.
1. Driving defense
According to the Colorado Legal Defense Group, intoxication isn’t a sufficient evidence in a drunk driving case. The prosecutor must also establish that you were driving a vehicle. This can help lessen your potential sentence, as the burden of proof for intoxication lies on the prosecution.
2. Probable cause
In Colorado, the local authorities should have a probable cause to stop your vehicle, arrest you, and detain you. In case a law enforcement officer pulls you over without any reasonable suspicion, all the subsequent evidence collected by that officer won’t be accepted at trial.
3. Miranda Rights
No police officer should read your Miranda rights until you have been arrested and the law enforcement officer is conducting a legal custodial interrogation. This is the time you should be advised of your rights. Any statement you might have made when your Miranda rights had not yet been read cannot be used as evidence against you in your DUI case. Depending on how weighty those statements are, your case may be dismissed or reduced.
4. “Impaired driving.”
It is legally possible to bring the arresting officers’ views and observation regarding your level of intoxication into question as part of your defense. This may include the circumstances under which the so-called field sobriety tests were conducted and the subjective nature of what the law enforcement officer perceives as “failing” the tests.
5. Witness testimony
If your DUI charges go to trial, you will be allowed to present a witness to testify. The witness may testify that you have not been drinking, you seemed to be lucid, or the reckless driving was caused by external factors, such as vehicle equipment malfunctions or an argument you had with a passenger.
6. Other Explanations
Remember, a potential DUI defense case presents details countering the law enforcement officer’s claims. For instance, the arresting officer may say that you had slurred speech or bloodshot eyes as of the time you pulled over. Your doctor can testify that your eyes were red because you wear contact lenses or due to bad allergy. The doctor may also testify that you had slurred speech because of your existing speech impediment. There may be more to the story that lead to your arrest, but a qualified attorney won’t let these circumstances lead to a conviction.
There are many defenses to a DWAI or DUI charges in Colorado. Remember, the best defense is what works for you, a reason you should consider working with a reputable lawyer.