The consequences of driving while under the influence (DUI) can be harsh as you will likely be subject to an array of fines, license suspension, installation of an ignition interlock device, potential jail time, and other significant penalties depending on the circumstances of your offense. However, before the prosecution can convict you, they must prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt to the court. To do this, a lot of evidence is required. That being said, many individuals wonder if there are ways to beat a DUI charge. One of the best ways of reaching reduced or dismissed charges is by identifying legal flaws in the prosecution’s evidence. There are a plethora of defenses that can be used including inaccurate breathalyzer tests, medical conditions, police errors, and other potential defenses that can be used to fight charges brought against you. Keep reading to learn about some potential DUI defenses and discover how a qualified Chesterfield County DUI Lawyer can use legal motions and arguments that protect your rights and interests.
How can I beat a DUI charge in South Carolina?
To stop your vehicle on suspicion of a DUI, the law enforcement officer must have probable cause. Lack of probable cause can be used as a DUI defense as police officers must have reasonable suspicion to pull you over. If they do not have probable cause any evidence obtained cannot be used against you as it was unlawfully acquired through an illegal search. By your 4th Amendment right, a motion to suppress evidence can be filed to ask the court to throw out certain evidence that was illegally obtained at the time of the arrest.
If a police officer pulls you over due to reasonable suspicion, they will ask you to perform a field sobriety test. However, field sobriety tests can be difficult to pass even when you are sober as they are conducted under less-than-ideal circumstances. There are many reasons why a sober driver can fail a field sobriety test. These include poor coordination, police officer intimidation, poor balance, and clothing that interferes with testing. Inaccurate field sobriety testing can be used as a potential defense.
One of the key elements the prosecution must establish to convict you is that you were in actual physical control of the vehicle. If you were found in your vehicle while intoxicated, you could face a DUI charge as you may be considered in physical control of the vehicle which means you could operate the vehicle while impaired. Therefore, the prosecution must prove that you were driving the vehicle, you had your keys, your engine was running, and you were seated behind the wheel. If you were not in actual physical control of the vehicle, this can be used as a potential defense to fight the charges.
If you have recently been charged with DUI, it is in your best interest to retain an adept and determined lawyer from the Cockrell Law Firm, P.C. With years of experience, you can trust our firm to represent your interests to avoid the long-term negative repercussions of this criminal offense.