DUI Washington Attorney – Best Practices

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A person driving under the influence often times does not realize that they have consumed too much alcohol to drive until it’s too late. Unfortunately, they do not realize the consequences of their actions until they are arrested for driving under the influence or in a vehicle accident or worse.

You have to find a DUI attorney in Olympia, Seattle and Tacoma if you find yourself arrested for driving under the influence.

According to the laws in the state of Washington, a DUI will never be expunged from your criminal record and carries with it mandatory jail and license suspensions as well as significant fines. A DUI is typically a gross misdemeanor, but it is as complicated to defend as a felony case. This is because a DUI case involves the merging of scientific evidence, police testimony, and issues of constitutional law.

When an officer suspects DUI, they begin the process of a DUI arrest with a Breath Test (BAC). But, a breath test isn’t entirely accurate because it is not an exact science. The detector used can be fooled by interferences. Liquid inside your mouth (mouth alcohol) even if it’s just a drop can cause the device to give an artificially high BAC end result. Additionally, poorly fitting dentures, loose fillings, untreated cavities, or a tongue piercing could all cause a fault in the BAC readout. To minimize the chance of this officers are requires to conduct an “observation period” where the police officer will check your mouth, and then you cannot eat or drink until the waiting period is over and you have completed the breath test; otherwise, the food or drink could interfere with the breath test. Talk to your lawyer and explain to them if you burped or threw up during the waiting period, because that could make it look like you were under the influence even if you were not.

There may also be constitutional issues for your attorney to raise. While in some places, a police officer can randomly stop passing vehicles, in Washington, a police officer needs to have a valid reason to pull you over. They can’t stop passing cars without suspicion. Once they’ve pulled your car over, the police must have probable cause to arrest you for DUI. In order to determine if the constitutional requirements had been met, your DUI lawyer will evaluate the police reports, the in-car video, and probably interview the arresting office.

Your lawyer will also attempt to determine whether the “facts” provided by the officer are true of if there are any flaws in his narrative. Your lawyer will compare his side of the arrest with witness testimonies and the provided evidence. If there are details that don’t correlate it could be used to your advantage. A DUI conviction is very serious. If you have been arrested for DUI, it is vital that you hire a DUI attorney to begin your defense right away, so contact Horwath Law now.