Common OWI Defenses

From the initial police stop to the introduction of evidence at trial, the following OWI defenses may help to reduce an unreasonably harsh sentence or even result in a dismissal altogether.

Improper stop by police

The law prohibits police from randomly stopping a person driving a vehicle without reasonable suspicion.

In the context of an OWI, police must actually see the suspect do something wrong. It is possible to assert that the police did not have reasonable suspicion to stop your vehicle if you were obeying all traffic laws. Additionally, any evidence gained thereafter is inadmissible.

Failure to follow proper field sobriety test protocol

There are several protocols that must be followed when field sobriety tests are managed. If the law authorization fails to stick to the predetermined processes, this can rapidly result in a concealment of any proof accumulated during the test, particularly if officials engaged in rude and inappropriate conduct toward the test subject.

Improper testing and storage of blood alcohol samples

Following an arrest, police officers must organize a suitable blood-alcohol analysis by a trained and licensed phlebotomist as quickly as possible. Testing by an untrained laboratory technician or delays could be possible defenses against the results.

Additionally, police are required to make certain that blood samples are correctly maintained after the test to avoid contamination, fermentation, or mislabeling.

Improper interrogation

Police officers are required by the law to inform a suspect once a person is officially under arrest. If an individual is placed under arrest, police must instantly advise the suspect as to their rights and the fact that statements made hereafter may be used in a court of law by the prosecution. These include the right to remain silent, the right to an attorney, and the right to court-appointed counsel if indigent.  

Violations of the rules of evidence & procedure

At long last, there are a few OWI defenses that may not emerge until the day of trial, including infringement of the state rules of civil procedure and evidence. This general classification includes the introduction of improper character evidence, the rules against hearsay, and the use of fabricated documents, photographs, or recordings.

The following defenses are the best place to start when trying to beat an OWI charge, but depending on your situation, an experienced OWI attorney may be able to provide even more options to reduce or dismiss your OWI charges.

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