In most cases, no driver wants to see blue police lights flashing behind them, but when it does happen, it is important to keep your priorities straight and pay attention during your interaction with police. If the officer suspects that you’ve been drinking, then you may have to submit to sobriety tests and will likely receive drunk driving charges if you fail these tests.
The way that you conduct yourself during the stop can strongly impact the outcome, even after you receive charges. Simply receiving drunk driving charges is not an automatic conviction, but it is a sign that you need to begin building your legal defense immediately.
The longer you wait to begin building your defense, the less time that you have to investigate your legal options in Texas and review the evidence against you. If you have not started building a defense against current drunk driving charges, now is the time to begin.
Mind what you say
From the moment that a police officer decides to pull you over, they are gathering evidence against you. This is a part of their job, and some officers are extremely talented at drawing out incriminating evidence and confessions.
While you should always remain calm and courteous to officers for your own safety, this does not mean that you must say anything that might incriminate you. In general, it is wise to remain silent rather than volunteer any information, because everything you say to an officer may act as evidence against you. If an officer asks you a question that you do not wish to answer, you may simply say that you would like to have your attorney present before continuing the conversation.
Challenging Breathalyzer evidence
In most drunk driving stops, police who suspect that a driver is intoxicated will require the driver to breathe into a Breathalyzer. If the driver fails the Breathalyzer, the officer will almost always arrest the driver and charge them with drunk driving. This does not mean that the driver is out of options.
Breathalyzer devices are not always reliable, especially if they do not receive regular maintenance and calibration. As you review the evidence against you, you may find reasons to believe that the Breathalyzer used in your test did not produce accurate results.
It is also possible that the officer administering the test did not properly use the device, although this is difficult to prove. Even if some aspect of your stop does not seem useful or relevant to your defense, it is wise to look at all sides of the interaction.
The conduct of your arresting officer
In some instances, police officers violate the rights of a suspect or do not follow their own protocols at some point during a traffic stop. Even if you do not think that this applies to your circumstances, it is a good idea to review the officer’s conduct closely, to make sure that your rights remain secure.
A strong defense against drunk driving charges examines every part of the suspect-officer interaction to keep the rights of the suspect protected and possibly see the charges dropped altogether.