Challenging a DUI/DWI starts with examining the evidence behind the traffic stop. An attorney should question whether or not the police officer had any cause to pull you over, or if the stop was invalid. Here’s why that’s important and how an invalid traffic stop may impact your DUI/DWI case.
Identifying whether or not a police officer had probable cause to pull you over in the first place is crucial. If the officer had no probable cause, it’s possible that the case may be dismissed entirely on that fact alone. At the very least, some evidence from the stop — such as field sobriety testing and breath testing — may be suppressed.
Some officers will pull over a vehicle based on the idea that they must be drinking and driving, especially if the driver is exiting the parking lot of a restaurant that serves alcohol, a liquor store, or a bar. Or, the officer may spot the vehicle weaving some inside his or her own lane. Although these are popular reasons officers pull over DUI/DWI suspects, they are not in and of themselves sufficient probable cause to do so.
True probable cause includes but is not limited to:
If you are arrested for a DUI/DWI, even if you were stopped illegally, you must follow the instructions of the police officer. You do not have any right to resist arrest under any circumstances, even if you believe the traffic stop was invalid.
You do have the option to decline a field sobriety test, but driving equals implied consent to chemical testing. This means that you must submit to a blood or breath test if the officer requests it — if you do not wish to suffer automatic consequences like losing your license. If you’re arrested after an invalid stop, the best course of action is to remain silent and take mental notes of everything that occurs from the point of your stop to your booking and provide that information to an experienced DUI/DWI lawyer.
If you’ve been arrested for a DUI/DWI, you may be able to challenge the entire stop on the basis of a lack of probable cause. Contact us for more information.
A DWI arrest can catch you off guard and change your future in a matter of minutes. It is important to understand that you do have rights. You need to be familiar with the process and what exactly it is that you can and cannot do during the course of a DWI Stop.
On day one, immediately following the arrest, you need to speak to a criminal defense attorney. Do not delay as you will need experienced and veteran criminal defense legal guidance to ahead of your charges as soon as possible.
I am attorney Scott G. Cerbin, Esq., and my firm is located in downtown Brooklyn near the Borough Hall and Jay Street stops. The Law Office Of Scott G. Cerbin, Esq., PLLC, offers free initial consultations to individuals living within all five New York City boroughs. You can reach me at any hour of the day or night, regardless of the complexity of your issue.
To schedule your initial consultation or to learn more about my firm, call 718-596-1829 or complete the lawyer contact form below.