Evidence in DUI Trials — Fort Lauderdale DUI Lawyer
When a person is pulled over and the law enforcement officer conducts a DUI investigation, he or she is looking for one main thing: evidence that your normal faculties are impaired by a substance (alcohol or drugs). However, the police officer a couple of disadvantage in terms of accuracy in this investigation. The first is that law enforcement is unaware of what your particular normal faculties are. This means that if you have had a knee injury, for instance, doing a heel-to-toe walking pattern on the side of a highway may be difficult for you. Similarly, standing on one foot for a long period of time may cause you to sway for any number of medical reasons that do not reflect on your degree of intoxication or impairment, notes Fort Lauderdale DUI Lawyer William Moore.
There are three ways the police try to collect proof against a driver suspected of operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated. The first is by inquiring about alcohol usage, or interrogation about the matter. An officer could ask, for instance, if you have been drinking and if so, how much. The second matter the officer will look at is your performance on roadside field sobriety tests, in which you are asked to complete several physical activities (and follow instructions) to see how well you are able to complete the task. As mentioned before, standing on one leg, possibly while counting, or walking heel-to-toe for a certain number of steps are common tasks. The officer will evaluate your performance on these tasks, although his or her perception is highly subjective, and may be colored by the fact that the officer already suspects the driver is intoxicated. Perhaps the most important test the law enforcement officer will ask you to submit to is a breath test to check for alcohol in your system, more commonly known as a breathalyzer. Although there is evidence suggesting these machines are not nearly as accurate as police or the machines’ manufacturers claim they are, the results are still admissible in a court of law. You may also be asked to submit to a blood or urine test, depending on the circumstances.
The less proof of intoxication exists, or what law enforcement believes is evidence, the less likely a driver is to be convicted at trial. “Triple refusals” can therefore be useful to your DUI defense lawyer, although refusal can have other consequences, including a longer period of driver’s license revocation. Always consult an experienced Broward DUI attorney before making these decisions.
In addition to these tests, the law enforcement official is also checking other signs of intoxication. Bloodshot eyes are an indicator they use, but one which is mimicked by other issues. Foremost among these is dry contacts, but even just being tired after a long day or allergies could cause red eyes.
This article should not be construed as legal advice in any way. Additionally, please note that because the operation of a motor vehicle constitutes implied consent to testing. Further, refusing a second or subsequent time can result in separate criminal charges.