Common DUI Defenses

Posted on by New Mexico Criminal Law Offices

DUI Defense Attorneys Fighting for the Rights of New Mexico Dri

Car keys and a mixed drinkAfter being arrested for a DUI, you might feel as though you are out of options. Before you accept a plea deal or admit guilt, you need to consult with an experienced DUI defense lawyer.

An attorney might have a defense that will keep you out of jail and possibly avoid a DUI conviction. With a DUI case, there are numerous options for defense – but you need a skilled NM attorney to identify which apply to your case.

The Most Common Defenses to DUI Arrests

Remember that these are common defenses, but by no means should you use them to as a reason self-represent. Instead, you must speak with a defense lawyer. The consequences of even a first-time DUI are much more severe than you might realize – and could affect you the rest of your life.

  • Improper Stop – This is a common argument made by the defense because police officers cannot just pull over anyone. Instead, they must have probable cause to pull over a driver, conduct a field sobriety test, or run a breathalyzer. If the officer lacked probable cause, the arrest could be invalid.
  • Improperly Administered Field Sobriety Test – If the field sobriety test was performed improperly, or it was used as the sole basis for the arrest, an attorney may challenge it. Especially if the officer relied on the horizontal gaze nystagmus (HGN) test, which uses eye movements to detect insobriety, but is highly inaccurate.
  • The Accuracy of the Breathalyzer – A breathalyzer is highly inaccurate when not calibrated properly. To calibrate, police departments must have their units continuously maintained – something that tends to fall in-between the cracks. Therefore, your attorney may have a good shot at using the machine’s inaccuracies as a defense. However, this will require evidence of poor maintenance, calibration issues, or inaccurate results in the past.
  • Chain of Custody – If you have bloodwork, your lawyerwill look to ensure the chain of custody was not compromised. The defense can raise questions about the accuracy of the blood test if it was improperly handled – either by not following evidence collection protocol, or by the lab.
  • The Driver was Not “Driving” – While it is illegal to drive a vehicle with a BAC over the legal limit, it is another to be arrested for a DUI when you were not driving. If you were not driving the vehicle, then you cannot be arrested for drunken driving.
  • Miranda Warning – Once you fail a field sobriety test, the officer might arrest you; and as part of your arrest the officer is required to read you the Miranda Warnings. If the officer does not give you these warnings, or recites them incorrectly, you may be able to challenge the arrest.

Arrested for a DUI in New Mexico? You Need an Aggressive DUI Defense Attorney

If you were arrested for a DUI you might have a viable defense. However, you need an attorney to represent you in order to properly determine which defenses apply in your unique situation. Even a first-time DUI can result in fines, jail time, and a permanent criminal record. Therefore, you want a DUI defense attorney that can explore the options for your defense strategy and find one that helps you receive the best possible outcome.

New Mexico Criminal Law Offices is here to help you with your case. Schedule a free case evaluation with our defense team at 505-375-4672, or request more information online.