Michigan Drunk Driving Attorney
Driving under the influence of alcohol, or more commonly known as DUI or “drunk driving”, is one of the most common offenses in our country and our courtrooms. Driving under the influence or DUI is also one of the most difficult charges to defend. DUIs or “drunk driving” is one of the only crimes in America that is not afforded the constitutional safeguards we have all come to know and appreciate. The evidentiary, scientific and procedural processes of defending DUIs has grown so complex over time as a result of continuing to lower the “legal limit” and placing harsher penalties on people charged with and convicted of DUI.
The most noticeable change to our DUI laws was the inclusion of the per se law. This law fundamentally states that it does not matter whether or not you were impaired or under the influence, but rather if your chemical test was above our magic number. In Michigan, if a driver has a bolily alcohol content (BAC) of .08 or above they are presumed to be intoxicated. This makes the prosecution’s job much easier and the defense’s much more difficult. The prosecution now relies upon the “science” of the chemical test and not whether or not you were truly intoxicated.
As pressure to arrest and convict more DUIs increases so does the monetary gain for the State and third party businesses who supply the State with the tools and machines to test suspected drunk drivers. Thus, our need for more complex and “accurate” testing devices increases. As we continue to make the methods of testing more complex, the level of error continues to increase as well.
In Michigan, you have expressly consented to submitting to a chemical test by driving on our public roadways. You have a choice of a blood or a breath test. If you choose breath, you will be required to blow into a device known as the BAC Datamaster. A well-trained Michigan DUI defense lawyer will be trained and certified in the operation and functionality of this machine and know how to attack the validity of its results.
An aggressive and well-trained DUI defense lawyer will understand and embrace the challenges in DUI defense and will investigate and exploit issues with every test result. Because of the complexity and difficulty in preparing successful defenses, you must select your DUI defense attorney carefully and ensure that their level of knowledge is superior to that of other defense attorneys. Do not hire based on price alone. Remember, you often get what you pay for when it comes to criminal defense attorneys.
Chemical analysis is not the only aspect that your DUI defense lawyer should attack. Along with chemical analysis, other evidentiary changes have evolved in recent years. One of these areas is field sobriety tests. Your Michigan DUI defense attorney should be trained in standardized field sobriety tests and must understand the validity of each test and how these tests can be compromised by instructor error.