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Common Defenses Against California DUI Charges

Posted on in DUI

San Jose DUI lawyer defense strategiesIn the age of technology and connectivity that we live in, the potential for drunk driving has been reduced. While getting to your destination after consuming alcohol may have previously required planning and a lot of hassle, it can now be completed with a simple order of an Uber on your cell phone. Because of this, many law enforcement officials do not take DUI charges lightly and will punish offenders to the full extent of the law. In California, even a first DUI conviction can carry possible jail time, large fines, and a driver's license suspension. A solid defense strategy can be key to getting a fair outcome in your DUI case. 

Elements of a DUI Case

Before you can begin building a solid defense, you must first understand a few things about your DUI case. When you are charged with DUI, the prosecutor has the burden of proof, meaning he or she must prove that you were in fact driving a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or other intoxicating substances. Knowing that the prosecutor must prove that you were impaired at the time you were driving, you and your attorney can construct a solid defense.

DUI Defense Strategies

Though there are many ways you can defense against a DUI charge, you and your lawyer should talk about your specific case and come up with a plan that is best suited for you. Here are a few strategies that may be of benefit if you are charged with a DUI:

  • You were stopped improperly: Before a police officer can pull you over, they are required to have probable cause. They are not able to just pull people over to randomly test them for alcohol. If you were driving erratically, that would provide probable cause for an officer to pull you over. If you can prove that the officer had no reason to actually pull you over, you may be off the hook.
  • You were not read your Miranda Rights: This is a must in all criminal cases. Before a police officer begins questioning you, they are required to notify you of your constitutional rights, known as the Miranda Rights. The officer must inform you that you have the right to remain silent to avoid self-incrimination and that you have the right to be represented by an attorney. If the police officer did not read you your rights, or if they only read you part of your rights, you may be able to have the case dismissed, or some of the evidence may be inadmissible.
  • The breathalyzer test was inaccurate: Being a piece of technology, breathalyzer tests are not always accurate. There are many things that can throw off the reading of a breathalyzer. Certain medical conditions, like acid reflux, can cause the breathalyzer reading to be higher than it actually is. Also, if a person has alcohol or alcohol-containing substances in his or her mouth when the breathalyzer is performed, the reading will come back much higher than it should. Officers are supposed to wait 15 to 20 minutes after they pull you over to perform a breathalyzer test for accurate results.

Contact a Santa Clara County DUI Defense Attorney Today

DUI charges are nothing to brush off -- they can have serious consequences if you are convicted, especially if you had aggravating factors in your case. If you have been accused of driving while you were under the influence, you need to contact a skilled San Jose, CA DUI defense lawyer as soon as possible. At the Law Offices of Erik Steven Johnson, we know that a DUI conviction can affect your entire life, which is why we aim to keep you from being convicted if at all possible. Call our office today at 408-246-3004 to schedule a free consultation.

Sources:

https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/codes_displayText.xhtml?lawCode=VEH&division=11.&title=&part=&chapter=12.&article=2.

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