What is Evidence in DUI/DWI Cases?
If you are facing drunk driving charges in Anne Arundel County, Montegomery County, or anywhere throughout the Washington, D.C. and Annapolis metropolitan areas, the police have collected evidence to substantiate those charges. As experienced DUI/DWI accident lawyers at the Hanover law firm of Hartel, DeSantis & Howie, LLP, we know that there is seldom such a thing as an iron-clad piece of evidence – which is why, when we defend you against DUI charges, no piece of evidence goes unchallenged.Typical Evidence in a Drunk Driving Charge
The prosecution relies on several pieces of information when building a case against you: Any prior charges or convictions you may have, the testimony of the arresting police officer and/or any other witnesses, and results of tests. Evidence based on test results is notoriously flawed and is the first thing our lawyers will challenge:
- Breathalyzers are not infallible: These machines often malfunction, and have been known to pick up readings for acetone in diabetics or the alcohol content from mouthwash – even ambient chemicals, such as those found in dry cleaning fluids – which can lead to an incorrect reading.
- To be admissible as evidence, a portable breath test device requires at least two samples: Less than that is less than reliable.
- Police officers are not phlebotomists: If the police have taken a sample of your blood, chances are that their procedures can be challenged.
- Field sobriety tests: Most field sobriety tests are not standardized, generally not recognized by any authority and often not admissible.
In addition to evidence from tests, we challenge prosecution witnesses – and find some of our own who can speak on your behalf. We also challenge chain of evidence, contradictions between police statements and squad-car videos and inconsistencies in police or witness claims. If the police failed to read you your rights or if you were stopped without probable cause – we will also use that as part of your DUI/DWI defense.
Most importantly: Do not say anything to the police without a lawyer present. It is your constitutional right to have legal counsel – and it is in your best interest to exercise that right.
Contact an experienced Maryland DUI attorney to schedule a free consultation
For more information about how Hartel, DeSantis & Howie, LLP can help you by challenging evidence, please contact us online or call us at (443) 749-5111. Our phones are answered 24/7, 365 days a year. We help clients throughout the region from our office in Hanover, MD.