When you are pulled over and asked to submit to a field sobriety test for possible DUI, a million things go through your mind. You may first wonder if you will be arrested, and if so how you will resolve your case. This can lead to wondering if you have a defense, and if so if your defense is plausible. While every case is different, there are some common factors that help determine your approach and will shed light on your biggest question; that of “do I have a good case?”
In Florida, the police can arrest you for DUI if your blood alcohol level is 0.08 or more. After the dust settles and you are ready to start development of your case, these five things will help you decide the strength of your case and choice of defense strategy:
- What was the reason for your stop? The police have to be able to articulate a valid, legal reason to have made the initial stop. Without showing reasonable suspicion to pull you over, the case against you may not be proper.
- Did the police give you the opportunity to decline a breath test? Most people are unaware they do not have to submit to the breath test, and must be given this choice.
- If you did not decline the test, was it administered properly? Proper administration of the test, including following proper rules and procedures, is required in order for the test results to be considered valid.
- Were there any there substances in your system that might impact the outcome of the breath test, such as prescription medication? Certain substances can result in a false positive, which gives you cause to challenge the results.
- Did the police read you your rights, and tell you that you are entitled to an attorney?
Perhaps the biggest area where a weakness in the prosecution’s case can be found is in the test itself. Sometimes the equipment malfunctions, or the officer giving the test is not properly trained to do so. If a defect in the testing equipment or procedure exists, that instance should be used as part of your defense to the charges. A thorough examination of the particular facts of your DUI case will help to reveal areas where you can challenge the case against you, and fight for your right to keep your license and your driving record clean.
If you have questions about DUI and criminal defense, call our office for answers. Call an experienced criminal defense attorney in Stuart and the Treasure Coast. Your first visit is a free initial consultation.