The first time my son got into some legal trouble, I didn't hire an attorney. I figured that he would just get a slap on the wrist and that he should accept his punishment, and that's what happened. The second time he got into trouble, I had to hire an attorney. I knew that since he had a record, the judge would not be so lenient about his punishment and he could suffer some serious consequences that could haunt him for his entire life. If you have a troubled child, my blog could help you understand the value of hiring an attorney for him or her.
Driving Under the Influence (DUI) laws are meant to keep people safe on the road and to deter senseless levels of intoxication or other mentally-impairing substances. Unfortunately, stricter interpretations of the law may put many people looking for a small drink after work, taking much needed medication or heading out for an emergency under undue inconvenience. If you're sure you were under legal influence levels or not under the influence at all, keep a few ideas in mind.
Influence Is Often About The Small Details
The first thing to consider during a DUI event is whether you're truly breaking the law. Every state has its own laws for intoxication limits, but there are times when other substances can lead to an unfair charge. Prescription medication can be one way to talk yourself into a DUI that wasn't necessary in the first place.
Being apologetic during an arrest is a big problem. Although it may seem natural to be as agreeable as possible to a police officer, don't make it a point to admit to all of your problems after a traffic stop. For example, using your pain medication or anti-depressants as an excuse for alleged erratic driving can create more problems than it solves.
You need to consider whether you were driving erratically in the first place, as the officer could have been mistaken. You also need to think about what you're admitting to when you claim the medication as a problem, as your medication may have obvious warnings against operating vehicles or heavy machinery.
The officer may have been acting correctly and safely, but admitting to the problem doesn't make anyone safer. Keep that information to yourself, get to a safe place and discuss the issue with a medical professional.
If you've already admitted to taking prescription drugs while driving, don't say a single extra word on the subject. Contact a DUI lawyer and get detailed advice on how to proceed, as you could be inadvertently admitting to other charges that you didn't commit.
A Completely Incorrect Charge
Continuing with the medication example, you may not have been driving erratically at all. You even might not have medication in your system. Unfortunately, if you're keeping medication in your vehicle for convenience and it has a label warning about driving while taking the medication, a stopping officer could jump to conclusions.
It isn't professional and may not be common, but if you absolutely did nothing wrong and stand by your driving skills, being silent can help here as well. Although there is a lot of evidence that could be submitted to prove your case, such as blood tests or a good excuse for keeping the medication in your vehicle, certain words or phrases could be twisted against you. You may be innocent at the end of the ordeal, but it could cost a lot of unnecessary time and money.
Take your evidence to a DUI lawyer and nowhere else. Contact them immediately to begin any necessary defense preparations, such as private blood tests and other forensic toxicology reports that could defend your position. For more information, contact Hogan-Kimrey LLP Attorneys At Law or a similar firm.