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DWI Defenses

You may think a DWI case is a straightforward matter, particularly if you submitted to field sobriety tests, incriminated yourself by admitting to drinking, or chemical tests show a BAC level above .08. The truth is there are several DWI defenses that may not even take into account your level of drinking.

Law enforcement officers are required to follow a standard of procedures when bringing in DWI suspects. If any protocols were not followed or if evidence was collected illegally, the entire basis for the case may collapse.

At Scharff Law Firm in Raleigh, we believe everyone deserves to have their rights protected. There are two roads you can choose after you have been arrested and charged with DWI in Raleigh. You can enter a guilty plea and submit yourself to the mercy of the courts. Those who opt for this route will likely face the full extent of punishment. The courts are not likely to reduce sentencing based on your willingness to admit fault.

The other road you can take is to hire a qualified DWI lawyer in Raleigh. Securing expert legal defense does not make you look guilty. Rather, it is a way to ensure you are treated fairly throughout the case so you can get back to living your life.

Here are some of the DWI defenses Scharff Law Firm uses to help people like you every day:

  • Prior medical condition. If you have a medical condition that could have affected your mannerisms, test results, or other evidence, it may render the prosecution’s evidence invalid.
  • Field sobriety tests. Protocols for field sobriety tests or the use of sobriety tests that are not approved by National Highway Traffic Safety Administration will not be admissible in court.
  • Failure to follow checkpoint guidelines. DWI checkpoints are standardized. If the checkpoint setup does not follow proper guidelines, any evidence obtained during checkpoint stops may be invalid.
  • Failure to prove intoxication. It is very rare that the prosecution will win a case based on a driver’s admission of guilt alone. There must be corroborating evidence through a chemical test, breathalyzer, or other field test. If other evidence is thrown out for improper direction, it is more likely that a case will be dismissed entirely.
  • Failure to prove driving in a public space. A person cannot be arrested for DWI on private property. The prosecution must prove that the area where the person was arrested was public domain.
  • Lack of probable cause for a stop. A police officer cannot pull you over simply to ask if you’ve been drinking. He or she must demonstrate some viable reason for the stop.
  • Wrong jurisdiction. If the arresting officer or other law enforcement agency was out of his jurisdiction, the charges may be dismissed.
  • Failure to inform a defendant of his or her rights. During the arrest, chemical testing, and other times, a defendant’s rights and legal information should be available and he or she should be clearly notified. For instance, the defendant has a right to access witnesses for chemical tests at the police station.
  • Failure to follow chemical testing protocols. If the standards set for chemical testing were not followed, the results of the testing will not be eligible for admission in court.
  • Deceptive language used by law enforcement. Officers should not use coercion or otherwise misleading language when speaking to a defendant. Exaggerated statements regarding the consequences of refusing or taking a BAC test can lead to a case dismissal.

These are only some of the defenses we have successfully used in DWI cases. Many times, a combination of tactics is the best way to approach a case. Contact us today for a free consultation and to learn more about DWI defense tactics that may work in your situation.