Driving under the influence (DUI) is a serious criminal offense in Florida, and being convicted of it can have severe consequences on your driving privileges, finances, and even your personal and professional life. If you are facing a DUI charge, it's crucial to understand the defenses against a DUI that can help you fight the charges or reduce the penalties. In this blog, we will discuss the top 10 defenses for a DUI charge and how they can work for you.
1. Lack of Probable Cause
Before a law enforcement officer can pull you over and arrest you for DUI, they must have probable cause to believe that you were driving under the influence. If the officer did not have any valid reason to suspect that you were impaired, you can argue that the arrest was made without probable cause.
2. Inaccurate Field Sobriety Tests
Field sobriety tests, such as the walk-and-turn or one-leg stand, are often used to determine if a driver is impaired. However, these tests are not always accurate and can be influenced by various factors such as medical conditions or even the weather. If the tests were not administered correctly or the results were misinterpreted, you can challenge their accuracy.
3. Faulty Breathalyzer Tests
Breathalyzer tests are commonly used to measure a driver's blood alcohol concentration (BAC). However, these devices are not always accurate and can produce false readings due to various factors such as improper calibration or interference from other substances. If you can prove that the breathalyzer test was faulty or unreliable, you can challenge its results.
4. Rising Blood Alcohol Level
Alcohol takes time to be absorbed into the bloodstream and reach its peak concentration. If you consumed alcohol just before driving, your BAC may be rising while you are being tested. You can argue that your BAC was below the legal limit at the time of driving and only reached an illegal level after you were pulled over.
5. Medical Conditions
Certain medical conditions can cause symptoms that mimic those of intoxication, such as slurred speech or impaired balance. If you have a medical condition that can explain your behavior, you can use it as a defense.
6. Mouth Alcohol
Breathalyzers are designed to measure the alcohol content in your deep lung air, not in your mouth. If you have consumed alcohol recently, residual alcohol in your mouth can cause a false positive reading. You can argue that the breathalyzer results were affected by mouth alcohol.
7. Improper Police Conduct
If the police officer who arrested you acted improperly or violated your rights during the arrest or testing process, you can use it as a defense. For example, if they did not inform you of your rights or used excessive force during the arrest, it can be grounds for dismissal of the charges.
If you can prove that you had to drive under the influence to avoid a greater harm, such as to seek medical attention or escape danger, you can use the defense of necessity.
If you were forced or threatened to drive under the influence, you can use the defense of duress.
If you can prove that the police officer induced you to commit the offense, such as by offering you alcohol or pressuring you to drive, you can use the defense of entrapment.
You Can Count on Ali & Blankner
Understanding these 10 defenses to a DUI charge can help you build a strong defense strategy and increase your chances of avoiding conviction or reducing the penalties. If you are facing a DUI charge in Florida, it's crucial to seek the help of an experienced criminal defense attorney who can guide you through the legal process and protect your rights. At Ali & Blankner, we have a proven track record of successfully defending clients against DUI charges. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and let us fight for your rights.