Drunk Driving Cases
Drunk driving cases involve complex legal and scientific evidence issues. If you have been arrested for DUI or DWI in Maryland, call us at 410-280-2500 for a free initial consultation about the issues in your case.
At Murphy & Price, LLP, our criminal defense attorneys share extensive experience prosecuting and defending people charged with crimes such as drunk driving.
We regularly defend drunk driving cases in the state courts in Anne Arundel County, located in Annapolis and Glen Burnie. In Anne Arundel County, we service clients in Arnold, Cape St. Claire, Severna Park, Pasadena, Glen Burnie, Severn, Linthicum, Odenton, Crownsville, Millersville, Edgewater and Lothian areas.
The first thing a lawyer deals with in a DUI case is whether or not there was a lawful traffic stop. Most acquittals in drunk driving cases are the result of there being an unlawful traffic stop by a police officer. If the police had no probable cause to pull you over, then all the evidence after the stop, including the Breathalyzer test and the field sobriety test, can be suppressed.
The next issue in these cases is whether the police can prove you were impaired by alcohol or under the influence of alcohol. These are two separate issues. Police often use the field sobriety test to determine whether you were impaired by or under the influence of alcohol. They also use the breath test to determine your blood alcohol content.
If you are alleged to have failed the field sobriety test, there are often ways a lawyer can challenge the result. Often, what may appear as proof of impairment is simply the result of errors in the way the police officer administered the test or the environment or circumstances in which the field sobriety tests were given.
If the breath test results are incriminating, your lawyer will need to find out if the test was administered properly. In Maryland, the state toxicologist sets forth a series of standards that are required for the administration of a breath or blood alcohol test. If these standards were not followed, then the breath or blood test results will be suppressed.
If one refuses to take the breath test or the breath test results are over .08, a suspension of driving privileges will often be proposed in the paperwork provided by the officer after the arrest. It is very important to bring thee papers to an experienced attorney within 10 days of the arrest to determine whether an administrative hearing should be requested. This hearing would be in addition to the court hearing regarding the DUI charges.
Our Two-Prong Approach To DUI Defense
First prong: We identify all potential defenses relating to the legality or illegality of the traffic stop, or the improper administration of the field sobriety or breath tests. Our attorneys are familiar with the standards for the proper administration of these tests. The test results can often be attacked or excluded from evidence if they are determined to have been improperly administered.
Second prong: In a DUI case, your lawyer also has to anticipate that there might be a sentencing hearing in the case if the prosecutor can prove the charges. We often refer clients to alcohol education or treatment or other alternative programs early in the process, so the court can see that you are taking the issue seriously, and may therefore exercise leniency in the case.
Free consultation: Contact an Annapolis, Maryland, DUI defense attorney at Murphy & Price, LLP, for a complimentary evaluation of your case.
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