If you have been charged with a DWI in Texas, don’t think that a conviction is certain. There are all kinds of ways that you may be able to beat your charges.
Which is a good thing, because the consequences here can be quite severe. You can lose your license for a set period of time, face higher insurance costs, and possibly even serve jail time.
An experienced DWI lawyer will be able to help you put together the strongest possible defense for your specific situation. In this post, we’ll detail several potential defenses that might work in your case.
The Police Had No Probable Cause for Arrest
To pull you over, police must have probable cause that you were driving under the influence or were committing a driving violation. They cannot pull you over on the basis of age, race, or ethnicity. If they pulled you over without probable cause, your case can be dismissed.
Your Rights Were Not Read Aloud
Police are required to read you your Miranda warnings during your arrest. If you did not hear phrases such as “You have the right to remain silent” or “Anything you say may be held against you in court,” your statements to them can be inadmissible.
The Police Officer’s Observations Were Incorrect
A police officer makes observations at the stop to determine whether you are under the influence of alcohol. These observations may include detecting alcohol odors on your breath, slurred speech, bloodshot eyes, erratic behavior, and poor field sobriety test results. Your attorney may challenge the officer’s testimony with other facts.
Perhaps your eyes were bloodshot because you have allergies, or your speech was slurred due to a physical impairment. Maybe you performed poorly on the field sobriety test because you were severely fatigued. There are several ways to poke holes in the officer’s testimony.
The Breathalyzer Test Results Are Inaccurate
At the time of arrest, the police officer may have used a breathalyzer to detect your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level. To produce accurate results, however, the machine must be correctly calibrated and used. If the officer was not sufficiently trained to use the device, or if the machine was not calibrated correctly, the test results can be thrown out.
Additionally, test results can show up as false positives for several other reasons. If you recently used mouthwash or were exposed to various chemicals, they may show up as alcohol on the breathalyzer test. If you have diabetes, the ketones in your breath may be detected as alcohol by the device. Your attorney will know if you can fight your charges with this defense.
Your Blood Test Results Were Mishandled
At the police station, your blood will be drawn for a more accurate BAC testing. If the blood samples are improperly handled or stored, the results can be compromised. Your case will be dismissed if these situations occur.
You Were Involuntarily Intoxicated
Admittedly, this is a rare one, but in very specific circumstances it can serve as a strong defense.
What does it mean to be “involuntarily” intoxicated? Well, it’s possible that you did not realize you ingested alcohol. For example, if you attended a party and drank spiked punch, you may not have realized your BAC was over the legal limit when you drove home.
If any of these defenses sound viable to you, call an experienced Texas DWI attorney today for an appointment. We will provide a free initial consultation where you can learn about the options available to you.
About the Author:
Brandon Fulgham has an in-depth understanding of both Texas law and Texans themselves. Before practicing law here, he received his undergraduate degree from TCU, and his law degree from South Texas College of Law in Houston. After graduation, he worked in District Attorneys’ offices as a prosecutor, building cases designed to put people behind bars. Now, he uses that knowledge to protect the rights of people in and around Fort Worth, making sure they receive the strongest possible defense when they find themselves on the wrong side of the law. He has been recognized for his work by The National Trial Lawyers, Fort Worth Magazine, and others.