How to Beat a DUI Charge in Minnesota [infographic]

A DUI charge in Minnesota has severe consequences, but steps can be taken to beat the charges or at least have them reduced. Driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs or other substances that impair your driving ability is illegal in all states. Some states refer to violations as DUIs, while others call them DWIs, but in either case, there are big consequences, including possible jail time.

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Table of Contents

Reducing or Eliminating DUI Charges

Drinking and driving is never a good idea under any circumstances. It can result in injuries, fatalities, property damages, loss of a driver’s license, huge fines, and increased insurance rates, not to mention the arrest. It only takes a few drinks to exceed the legal limit which is 0.08% blood alcohol content (BAC). If stopped on the road, it’s important for drivers to know how to protect their rights in a traffic stop.

Field Sobriety Tests

Although field sobriety tests are commonly administered in DUI stops, they are not always accurate indicators of impairment. Breath tests measure the amount of alcohol in the breath, then convert that number to determine the alcohol blood content (BAC). As a result, breath tests are susceptible to a variety of influences that cause inaccurate readings.

Probable Cause

Police officers must have probable cause to stop, detain, or arrest someone for a DUI. Officers must have a reasonable suspicion of criminal activity which may be prompted by a traffic violation, an observable safety violation, or a driving maneuver that indicates the driver may be intoxicated. Broken headlights or taillights, broken or cracked windows, darkly tinted windows, and loud exhaust pipes provide probable cause for a traffic stop. If a driver is stopped and the evidence doesn’t show probable cause, DUI charges may be reduced or dismissed.

Communication

If stopped, a driver should be courteous, but admit to nothing. Many divers become overly talkative and provide too much information due to stress or anxiety, but admitting to guilt can be held against the driver in court. Drivers are under no obligation to provide police officers with any information beyond that on their driver’s license, vehicle registration, and proof of insurance.

Max Keller has won countless jury trial cases involving misdemeanors and felonies, sex crimes, and DWI’s. He is a member of the Minnesota Society for Criminal Justice, which only allows the top 50 criminal defense attorneys in the state as members. Max is a frequent speaker at CLE’s and is often asked for advice by other defense attorneys across Minnesota.

Years of Experience: Approx. 20 years
Minnesota Registration Status: Active
Bar & Court Admissions: State of Minnesota Minnesota State Court Minnesota Federal Court 8th Circuit Federal Court of Appeals State of Maryland

What to Do If You Have Been Charged with a Criminal Offense

Minnesota recently passed a public safety bill that brings sweeping changes to the state’s juvenile justice system. While minors sometimes run afoul of the law, the juvenile justice system seeks to account for the differences between children and adults. Therefore, while the penalties for adults convicted of crimes focus on punishment, those for juveniles are aimed at diversion and restorative practices.
If a county medical examiner’s work is called into question in one case, it can affect all those they were a part of. An independent review is underway of murder cases involving the testimony of the long-time medical examiner in Ramsey County, Minnesota. The review comes in response to a wrongful murder conviction that was recently vacated on the basis that the medical examiner gave flawed medical testimony.
You might ask how plea bargains work if you are considering settling your criminal case by skipping the trial phase. A plea bargain in Minneapolis, MN, happens when a criminal defendant agrees to plead guilty or no contest instead of having the prosecution prove his or her guilt at trial. The prosecution agrees to reduce the charges, recommend less harsh penalties, or drop the charges altogether in exchange for a guilty plea.