Driving under the influence is a serious charge, and a conviction can have life-altering consequences. An experienced Colorado Springs DUI attorney from Patterson Weaver Law, LLC can examine your case and identify all possible defenses. Our trusted legal team has helped many people across Colorado get DUI charges reduced or even dismissed altogether. We will fight for the best possible outcome in your case.
Contact us today for a free and confidential consultation with a trusted DUI criminal defense attorney. Our team is available 24/7. We represent clients facing first DUI, second DUI, third DUI, and DWAI charges throughout El Paso County, Teller County, Pueblo County, Park County, Fremont County, and the nearby areas.
Is It Worth Getting a DUI Lawyer?
While it is true that you have the right to defend yourself in criminal court, there is also some truth to the old adage that “A man who is his own lawyer has a fool for a client.”
The reason people hire DUI attorneys to defend them from a drunk driving charge is the same reason they see a doctor when they are sick, hire an architect to design their house, or speak with an accountant about their taxes. Professionals have specialized training and experience that the average person simply does not possess.
Neither the police officer who arrested you nor the prosecutor in charge of your case is there to help you. They are not your friends. They are not looking to cut you the best plea deal possible. They just want you to plead guilty.
For these reasons, you should at least speak with a Colorado Springs DUI attorney to go over the facts of your case. At Patterson Weaver Law, LLC, we offer free initial consultations. Bring the police report and any other documentation relating to your arrest with you to the consultation. Write down a list of questions you would like to ask. That will help you make the most of your time. A face-to-face meeting is also a good way for you to gauge whether our law firm would be a good fit for you.
To schedule your free initial consultation, contact our DUI law firm today. We have everything you need to help you get through your legal matter.
What Does a DUI Attorney Do?
Your attorney is your professional representative who assists you in all phases of your case:
- At the DMV hearing, your lawyer will question witnesses and make arguments to the hearing officer.
- At the discovery stage, your attorney will review all of the evidence the state has against you, such as police reports, witness statements, dash cam or body cam footage, etc. This will help your lawyer identify possible defenses and evaluate the strength of the case against you.
- At each court appearance, your attorney will negotiate with the prosecutor and communicate with the judge on your behalf.
- At trial (if necessary), your criminal defense lawyer will cross-examine witnesses, present your defense, and everything in-between.
How Do You Defend Against a DUI?
After reviewing the details leading up to your DUI accusations, our attorney will then evaluate the most effective defense options available in your unique circumstances. We utilize a risk assessment approach, meaning we will anticipate the risks and costs of each DUI defense strategy and determine the best ways to counter or minimize those risks. By doing this, we hope to prepare you for the best and worst-case scenarios in your case, better preventing you from getting caught off-guard in the courtroom.
With this in mind, let’s take a look at the possible DUI defenses below that you could use to fight your charges:
- Improper stop by police: The police must have reasonable suspicion that a crime is taking place or will take place before pulling you over. Examples of indicators that could create a reasonable suspicion of a crime include weaving in and out of lanes, driving without headlights on, speeding, or driving excessively below the speed limit.
- Failure to follow field sobriety test protocols: The Standardized Field Sobriety Test (SFST) is a battery of three individual tests that all examine different signs of impairment. The SFST includes the horizontal gaze nystagmus, one-leg stand, and walk-and-turn tests, which all must be administered properly or else the test results will be skewed. If an officer doesn’t follow the rules for each SFST, they could risk causing inaccurate and unreliable results. As such, your lawyer can question the reliability of both the officer and field sobriety test results in court, potentially helping to get your DUI charges reduced or dismissed.
- Mishandling of blood samples: Once you get arrested for DUI, you may be required to give a blood sample to examine your blood alcohol concentration (BAC). This procedure must be handled by a trained and qualified technician who can be trusted to handle the blood samples accurately. If your blood samples are not stored in the right temperatures, mislabeled, or collected by an untrained professional, for instance, then your lawyer can argue that this evidence should be tossed out because it is unreliable.
- False-positive breathalyzer test: You’d be surprised at how often a breathalyzer test could go wrong. External conditions and underlying medical conditions are often the culprits of skewed test results, and even the arresting police officer could be blamed for not following the breathalyzer test protocol correctly. These errors and inconsistencies could cause false-positive breath test results, and ultimately, your DUI case could be thrown out altogether.
- Violation of Miranda Rights: Your Miranda Warning must be read before getting questioned by the police. Unfortunately, if your Miranda Rights are violated by the police, anything you say could be deemed inadmissible in court and NOT used against you as a result. Keep in mind that the police are only required to read your Miranda Warning after arrest and prior to interrogation. Thus, they are allowed to ask for things like your license, registration, and ID, but if the police arrest you and take you into custody for questioning, they must first read your Miranda Warning beforehand.
- Illegal search and seizure: Your Fourth Amendment rights protect you from unreasonable search and seizure, so if the police conduct an illegal warrantless search of your person or vehicle, for example, any evidence they obtain from that unlawful search could be thrown out and deemed inadmissible in court. Warrantless searches are legal under certain circumstances, although, we encourage you to reach out to our attorney if you have questions about when warrantless searches are allowed and we’d be happy to clarify.
- Inconsistent/unreliable testimony by police: If your DUI case goes to court and the police are called to testify against you, your lawyer should ensure the officer’s testimony aligns with their police report and other allegations. Believe it or not, some DUI cases get dismissed altogether if the judge doesn’t trust the officer’s accounts of your alleged offense. For example, if an officer wrote that your BAC was .08 but they testify that your BAC was twice the legal limit, your attorney may question the officer’s integrity and compel a judge or jury to reconsider your DUI charges.
The DUI defense strategies above are possible options for your case but should not be taken as legal advice under any circumstances. By speaking to our DUI attorney in Colorado Springs, you will get a better idea of your potential legal options and defense strategies for your individual case.