Minneapolis DWI Defense Attorney
In the state of Minnesota, you have the right to challenge your DWI. If you feel that you have been wrongly accused of DWI, you need to call a Minneapolis DWI lawyer as soon as you are charged or suspected. Let the officer know that you would like to speak to an attorney. Then, let your attorney help you. Even if you do not acquire an attorney from the beginning, you can hire an attorney at any time to challenge the DWI criminal charge and the revocation of your driver’s license.
Unfortunately, many drivers feel that their DWI case is “easy.” They’ve been accused, so they must be guilty. As a result, many people plead guilty and never seek the assistance of a criminal defense attorney. But the truth is not everyone needs to plead guilty and not everyone who is accused of DWI will be convicted.
There are both civil and criminal proceedings in a DWI case, and there are different penalties associated with each. Most people do not realize this, which is why it is important to have an attorney by your side. Many first offenders may feel guilty. They will go ahead and plead guilty because they may feel that did something wrong. You should know, however, that there IS a way out.
If you’ve been charged with a DWI, you’re probably wondering whether any possible DWI defenses exist. After all, the police say you were driving, and they say the results of the test you took measured your AC (alcohol concentration) at .08 or higher. You may think, “What possible DWI defenses could I have? Shouldn’t I just plead guilty?” No: You do have defenses. There are a multitude of possible defenses to a DWI, from the unusual and complex to the common and simple. Three of the most common defenses to DWI are:
Common DWI Defenses on your side
The Police Officer Illegally Stopped Your Car
Challenging the stop of your car is a great way to get the charges dismissed in their entirety. If the judge finds that the police did not have a valid reason to stop your car, then all evidence collected after the stop of your car is suppressed or thrown out. This evidence thrown out includes the test result or any refusal to take a test, along with any statements you may have made to the police. Most police squad cars in the metro area are now equipped with video in their cars. Your DWI defense attorney should request this video. The video may not tell the entire story of the stop, but it’s a good starting point.
The Police Officer Did Not Have Probable Cause to Arrest You
Typically, an officer will arrest a suspected drunk driver based on the officer’s observations of the suspect’s driving conduct prior to stopping the vehicle, the officer’s observations of the suspect when the officer requested the suspect’s driver’s license and insurance information, the officer’s evaluation of how the suspect performed on field sobriety tests and the result of the preliminary breath test. A skilled attorney can challenge the officer’s probable cause to arrest you. The police need reasonable, articulable suspicion of criminal activity (i.e., that you’re drunk) in order to request that you perform the field sobriety tests and submit to a preliminary breath test. To challenge these, you’ll need to hire an attorney who is familiar with the requirements of performing field sobriety tests correctly — if the tests can even be administered in a reliable manner (some say the tests are not reliable at all).
The Police Did Not Honor Your Right to Consult with an Attorney Before Deciding Whether to Take a Test at the Police Station
In Minnesota, all drivers suspected of DWI have the right to consult with an attorney (“the right to counsel”) before deciding whether to submit to a test. This right attaches after you have been arrested and brought to the station (or a hospital) but before you actually are required to take a test. The police officer is required to advise you of this right to counsel. If the police officer doesn’t advise you of this right, doesn’t properly advise you of this right or doesn’t allow you enough time to contact an attorney, then your test result or test refusal will be suppressed or thrown out
Arguments that may be used against you and your case
Each case is unique, so the evidence that is presented in each case is unique. But, a qualified Minnesota defense attorney can take the evidence and provide a case to refute the prosecution’s claims in order to have the penalties reduced or the charges dropped completely.
For instance, the prosecution may offer evidence, but the defense may be able to:
- Produce doubt that you were the one driving the vehicle
- Prove that the arresting officer did not have probable cause
- Prove that the arrest was not valid
- Show that Miranda rights were not given, so any incriminating statements cannot be
- Show that the vehicle was searched illegally
- Prove that the test was not given properly
- Demonstrate that the right to an attorney was not given or was not honored
- Prove that there was something in the mouth that interfered with the test
- Demonstrate that a medical condition such as acid reflux interfered with the results
- Prove that the testing device (such as an Intoxilyzer or Datamaster) was not properly calibrated or there has been a history of deficiencies with the device
Not all of these defenses are applicable to all cases, but some of them may be. There may also be usable defenses that are not listed here. You would be amazed at what your DWI attorney can do with your case in order to give you the most reasonable outcome possible. And the sooner you call an attorney, the better your case will be.
In order to preserve your job and your liberty, you need an aggressive, experienced Minnesota DWI defense attorney to help you raise these DWI defenses and others. Contact Max Keller today.