Options For Fighting A DWI Charge
When you've been arrested for a drunk driving offense, this doesn't have to be the end of the story. There are a couple of different options for fighting the charge either to reduce or eliminate it. Here are three paths you can take to fight your DWI.
When to Deny the Charge
Sometimes, you have the option of denying that you were intoxicated altogether. This is possible when a breathalyzer test came close to the legal limit, for example. In the event that there were no observers who saw your drunken behavior, it's your word against the police officer's. There are a few defenses that your DWI defense attorney may bring up. First of all, blood alcohol tests aren't always completely accurate if the equipment was malfunctioning. Observations of behavior are subjective as well; there could be plenty of other reasons for unusual behavior.
When to Reduce the Charge
If there is considerable evidence that you were over the legal alcohol limit, you can still work with your DUI attorney to get the penalties reduced. There is a range of fines and jail time that comes with a DWI charge, so aim to be on the lower side of the scale. If you have a clean driving record other than that, then you might argue that it was a one-time mistake. It helps if you have a lot of factors that point to you being a responsible and engaged citizen, such as a long-term job and ties to organizations in the community.
When to Make a Plea Deal
You might also consider making a plea deal; you agree to plead guilty in exchange for certain terms being carried out. One thing that people negotiate about, for instance, is their ability to still drive despite an active DWI charge. One way around the complete license suspension is an interlock device that goes on your car's ignition. It sporadically tests your blood alcohol level to make sure that you aren't drinking on the road. These may be granted by individual judges who believe you have a strong need to continue driving. For instance, if your job is your only source of income for a family with children, and public transit isn't feasible in your area, an interlock device is more likely to be granted. Each of these options can be helpful in different scenarios, so it's important to consult a DWI defense attorney, such as David A. Mansfield, to see which is most feasible.