If you're facing drunk driving charges, then you were probably subjected to field sobriety tests which the police claim you failed. Prosecutors will use this evidence in an attempt to obtain a conviction, whether through plea negotiations or trial. However, simply because the police say you failed a field sobriety test does not mean that you will automatically be convicted of the crime for which you have been charged. Oftentimes, strong criminal defense options are available to those who are in this position, which may allow them to avoid the harshest penalties, or even all of them.
One way to do this is to challenge the procedures the police utilized when conducting your field sobriety tests. These tests require strict compliance with certain procedural safeguards to ensure that false positives are not received. Yet, police officers commonly skip steps, fail to appropriately analyze a test or even provide legally inadequate field sobriety tests. If any of these is the case, then you may be able to get the results of the test suppressed, which could devastate the prosecution's case.
Another way to challenge a drunk driving case is to argue about the validity of a breathalyzer test result. There are many ways to do this, too. One way is to again draw into question the procedures utilized by the authorities. However, field sobriety and breathalyzer tests may also be suppressed if it can be shown that the initial reason for a traffic stop was illegal.
With so many criminal defense options, those accused of drunk driving need to carefully craft their case to give themselves the best possible chance of success given the facts. At the Law Office of James L Riotto, our team of skilled legal professionals know how to use the law to our clients' advantage, crafting compelling legal arguments that not only protect their legal rights, but also their futures. Those who want to learn more about our firm and how we may be of assistance should browse the rest of our website.