Many people think that a DUII arrest necessarily leads to a conviction. But the truth is, many DUII charges can be beaten. That's because every DUII case has one or more defenses.
When taking a case, an experienced defense attorney will thoroughly review the chain of events leading to the arrest. These are but a few of the factors that can lead to a dismissal of charges or a not guilty verdict:
The officer did not have reasonable suspicion to stop your vehicle.
The arresting officer must have a reason to suspect that you are intoxicated in order to pull you over and question you. Did he or she really observe you violating a traffic ordinance? For example, simply changing lanes or leaving the parking lot of a bar does not provide a sufficient basis for an officer to pull you over, provided that you were obeying traffic laws.
The police officer failed to properly administer field sobriety tests.
Even if you failed the field sobriety tests, it may not have provided the officer with sufficient justification to continue the investigation or subject you to a breath test. If the officer failed to administer the field sobriety tests or there were medical reasons why you could not perform them, it could result in a dismissal of the DUII charge.
The breath test results are not admissible.
If the Intoxilyzer machine was not properly operated or maintained, a savvy defense lawyer could get the test results suppressed, making the state's case unviable. If the subject burped or hiccupped during the observation period prior to the test, it could also make the test results inadmissible, leading to a dismissal or not guilty verdict.
The police officer's testimony at the DMV driver's license hearing differs from his or her testimony at the DUII trial.
Under cross-examination in a DUII trial, an officer may make statements that contradict earlier testimony made in the DMV hearing, or which are inconsistent with other facts.
The driver was not actually driving the vehicle.
Though it seems hard to believe, numerous drunk driving cases in Oregon and other states have been won using this defense. There is a great deal of case law that deals with this subject. Undoubtedly, there are additional legal issues yet to be determined.