As a Bloomington IL DUI lawyer I am often asked what are the 3 key DUI defenses. The most important defenses available to a person charged with DUI are that the officer did not have a valid reason to pull you over, that you were not actually intoxicated, and that your blood alcohol content was not obtained according to proper procedure.
The first defense to analyze in defending a DUI is to determine whether the officer had a valid reason to pull you over in the first place. An officer does not have an absolute right to pull you over. Valid reasons for a stop could include violating a traffic law, not having a valid driver’s license, or exhibiting suspicious behavior. All three of these reasons could give the officer the required reasonable suspicion which would allow him to pull you over. A good DUI lawyer will always first determine whether the officer was justified in making the initial traffic stop.
Not actually being drunk or under the influence of drugs while you were driving a vehicle is another key DUI defense. If your blood alcohol level was below .08 and you were not under the influence of any illegal or prescription drugs then you are not guilty of a DUI. This may seem basic to most people, but many people end up being charged with a DUI who have not consumed drugs or alcohol. This may be the best defense to a DUI of all. In situations like this, a good DUI lawyer will know how to properly preserve and present your defense.
A third key DUI defense is when the officer did not follow the proper procedures in testing your blood alcohol content. An officer may use one of three different methods for obtaining your blood alcohol content: breath, blood, or urine. Each method has certain legal procedures which must be followed or else the results are not valid. In order to determine whether the results were properly obtained it is important to review the discovery materials including the police report and lab results. If your blood alcohol content was not obtained properly then you may have a good defense to your DUI.
A DUI is a serious charge. Whether the officer was justified in pulling you over, whether you were actually intoxicated or under the influence, and whether your blood alcohol content was properly obtained are crucial. Determining whether one of these 3 key DUI defenses apply to your case is the job of an experienced DUI lawyer.
Thanks to our friends and contributors from Pioletti & Pioletti Attorney’s at Law for their insight into DUI defense.