Washington DC DUI Defense
DUIs are taken seriously in DC, and if you are found driving under the influence, it will most likely lead to a DUI trial. These trials are difficult to handle alone but a skilled DUI attorney can help you through this process. A qualified lawyer is instrumental to your case and can help build you the Washington DC DUI defense best suited to your case.
Under DC law, a DUI occurs when someone is driving a vehicle within the District of Columbia while they are appreciably impaired or under the influence of alcohol, a controlled substance, or a combination of a controlled substance or medication that requires a prescription.
Minimum BAC a Person Can Have
The law states that they are per se intoxicated if their blood alcohol content is above a 0.08. However, a person can be convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol without being over a 0.08.
The government must prove that a person is appreciably impaired. An individual can also be charged and/or convicted of operating while impaired (OWI) for being appreciably impaired by alcohol, a controlled substance, or something else.
Seriousness of DUI Charges
DUI charges are taken seriously. There is a select group of judges that deal with DC DUI cases on their standard docket.
DUI charged are prosecuted seriously because of the danger to the person who is driving the vehicle and the dangers to others on the road. Judges are aware that other people can be hurt and/or killed by someone who is driving a vehicle while under the influence.
Constitutional Issues in DUI Cases
Constitutional issues that may come up in a DUI case are Fifth Amendment issues related to alleged statements made by the person accused of driving the car.
Often officers come into court and claim that the person charged with a DUI made statements after they were told they were under arrest or during the course of a DUI investigation.
The defense attorney can use this in a Washington DC DUI Defense to make an argument about whether that alleged statement should be admitted and whether a judge or a jury should be allowed to take it into consideration.
How Constitutional Issues Impact Cases
The impact of a constitutional issue depends on the issue. For example, a Fourth Amendment issue results in the suppression of the field sobriety test results. That can lead to the suppression of any breath test that was taken or administered. This suppression of evidence can bolster a Washington DC DUI defense.
Furthermore, when evidence is suppressed, the government may be unable to proceed with their case, resulting in a dismissal of the case. It can so severely hamper the government’s case, they are unable to proceed successfully.
Whose Interpretation of the Constitution Do DC Courts Follow When Prosecuting DUI Charges?
A DC trial court follows case law issued by the DC Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court of the United States because of DC’s somewhat unique position as a district and not a state.
Sometimes, DC courts recognize another state’s law when it is particularly instructive on an issue. The DC courts typically use DC Court of Appeals cases and Supreme Court cases that set precedent.
Benefits of an Attorney
A DUI lawyer can represent you and try to eliminate all criminal liability to that client. The attorney may be able to have the case dismissed or may take the case to court to win the trial. The attorney can also try to keep you out of prison by building you a solid Washington DC DUI defense.