It can be a very tough situation if you find yourself or a loved one arrested for a DWI (driving while intoxicated) or DUI (driving under the influence). Obviously, it is a situation you don’t want to be in, but it is something that can and does happen. Throughout the entire process, you need to see therapy and counseling to ensure you are dealing with it in the right manner, but that’s not all. You also have to deal with the legal aspects, which is easier said than done. How should you deal with a DWI or DUI? This guide can help you in knowing what to do.
Generally, three methods are used by police officers for determining if you have had too much to drink. They can pull you over if they observe you and find your driving suspicious. They can also ask you to do a sobriety tests, which involves speech tests or performing balance tests. Last, they can choose to measure the alcohol level in the blood. You have the option of refusing to take the chemical test at a DWI or DUI stop, but doing so will imply consent. This means that your refusal can get your driving license suspended for somewhere between 3 and 12 months, even if you are not guilty.
It should also be noted that if the case goes to trial, jury members will be inclined to believe that you refused to take the test because you were actually under the influence or intoxicated. In some cases, you may have to go to the court for an arraignment, an appearance where formal charges are brought against you and you have to respond by entering a plea. You have to decide whether you want to plead guilty or not guilty. At this stage, you don’t need to have an attorney to assist you as you can always change your plea later on.
You also have the option of insisting on a jury trial and convictions should be denied so their validity can be challenged by your attorney later on. Defending a drunk driving charge can be difficult because it involves a good understanding of medical and scientific concepts. Therefore, it is better if you hire a lawyer who specializes in these cases and can offer you effective legal counsel. You can do a search for a DWI lawyer in Springfield, MO or where you are based and they can assist you during the process.
If there is no physical evidence, your lawyer can plea your case to a ‘wet reckless’, which carries the same penalties and fines as a DUI, but is not that as bad. When you are released, you can decide to plead guilty, try for a plea bargain or ask for a trial before a judge. A lawyer can guide you about the best option for you as it all depends on your blood-alcohol level. Regardless of what route you decide to take, having an attorney in your corner can go a long way in dealing with a DWI or DUI.