A DUI charge often carries various legal penalties depending on the circumstances of the case. If individuals are convicted of a DUI charge, they may face a jail term in extreme cases and license revocation and legal fines in less extreme situations. As such, a defendant should consult a competent DUI attorney to avoid the legal consequences of a DUI charge. Usually, there is a legal limit of an acceptable blood alcohol percentage that a driver should stay under to avoid breaching DUI laws. Thus, once a driver fails a sobriety or breathalyzer test, they have little chances of success unless they consult a professional. There are a few legal defenses a DUI attorney can use to mitigate a defendant's liability.
Challenge the Breathalyzer Results
The first defense a DUI attorney can use is to challenge and discredit the breathalyzer results. Before a law enforcement officer can arrest a driver for drunk driving, they must administer a test to establish that the driver is indeed drunk. The breathalyzer is the most common blood alcohol concentration level (BAC) test. Given that a DUI attorney understands how DUI breath tests work, they can challenge the accuracy of the results and beat a DUI charge. A DUI attorney can prove that a discrepancy in the test results could be occasioned by many variables, including the breathalyzer's margin of error and improper calibration.
Medical Conditions Such as Ketosis
Ketosis may be triggered when the body lacks enough carbohydrates. It can also be triggered by various medical conditions such as hypoglycemia and diabetes. When the body lacks carbohydrates, it instead burns fat cells producing ketones. As a result, ketones are released through the breath and urine. Once ketones are released, they convert into alcohol. Thus, a driver's test may reflect high blood alcohol concentration levels from ketone produced in the body. In such a case, a DUI attorney can get an independent medical evaluation showing the defendant has a medical condition that affected the accuracy of the DUI breath tests.
Illegal Traffic Stops
A law enforcement officer needs suspicion or probable cause to make a valid traffic stop. Under the forbidden fruit doctrine, a law enforcement officer must follow due procedure when making an arrest. Otherwise, the arrest is invalid, and any evidence collected irregularly is inadmissible. The prosecution in a DUI charge must demonstrate that the officer had good reason to believe the driver was drunk before administering the test. A DUI attorney understands what passes for "probable cause" or "reasonable suspicion" and can challenge any illegal arrest. Thus, defendants should hire a DUI attorney for effective representation.