Are There Defenses to DUI Charges?

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Getting arrested for drunk driving is a stressful experience. Especially if you had been drinking prior to your arrest, it can feel like there is no way you can fight the charges against you. After all, how can you argue with the results of a breathalyzer or a police report that makes it sound like you were three sheets to the wind?

Fortunately, in many cases, there are defenses available to DUI charges. Knowing when they apply and raising them properly requires significant experience and training, however, so it’s in your best interest to contact an experienced Fargo attorney as soon as you can.  In the meantime, here are some of the defenses that may apply in your case.

Inaccurate Breathalyzer Results

While it may come as a surprise, breathalyzer results are often inaccurate. In order for the device to accurately determine your blood alcohol content (BAC), the device needs to be properly calibrated and used. If there is any evidence that the device was not properly calibrated or that the officer who administered the test was not properly trained to use it, it may be possible to have the results of the test suppressed.

In addition, there is evidence that indicates that gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) can result in inaccurate results. If you have a history of heartburn, it may be possible to call the results of the breathalyzer into question.

Alternative Explanations for Signs of Intoxication

Police officers are trained to look for certain tell-tale signs of alcohol intoxication during a traffic stop. Common signs they look for include bloodshot eyes, slurred speech, confusion, and the odor of alcohol. In many cases, the reason they engage in small talk during a stop is to observe a driver for these and other signs of intoxication.

Importantly, most of the signs of intoxication that the police are looking for can have other causes. For example, allergies can cause bloodshot eyes, and your speech can become slurred if you are very tired. In fact, people who have diabetes can have an odor on their breath that smells similar to alcohol even when they have not been drinking. If your lawyer can provide alternative reasons for the signs of intoxication observed by the officer that arrested you, it may result in your case being dropped or an acquittal at trial.                                                                                                                  

Call Us Today to Schedule a Consultation with a Fargo DUI Defense Attorney

If you have been accused of drunk driving in the Fargo Moorhead area, it’s in your best interest to contact an experienced attorney as soon as you can. At O’Keeffe O’Brien Lyson Attorneys, criminal defense attorney Tatum O’Brien is committed to helping those accused of crimes protect their rights. To schedule a consultation, email Tatum O’Brien directly, call our office at 701-235-8000, or contact us online.