Tactics For Fighting Your WA DUI Charge
5 things the District Attorney does not want you to know:
- He does not have all the witnesses available to prove his case.
- He has exculpatory evidence which would prove your innocence.
- You have a right to a jury trial within three months of pleading not guilty.
- He has evidentiary problems in proving your blood alcohol level.
- He's bluffing.
7 Facts That Must Be Proven Before You Can Be Found Guilty
- Your identity
- As a driver
- Of a motor vehicle
- In the state of Washington, while
- Your blood alcohol level was over one of the prescribed limit or
- You were substantially incapable of driving (driving under the influence) or
- You were effected to the slightest degree in your driving ability (driving
while ability impaired).
What you must do at the Motor Vehicle Division immediately to preserve
your right to drive:
You only have 20 days to request a hearing from the Department of Licensing
to save your privilege to drive. You must request a hearing using the
form the officer gave to you at the time of the arrest. DO NOT attempt
this hearing on your own.
10 questions your attorney must ask you.
- What your itinerary was prior to arrest.
- Your consumption of alcoholic beverages.
- Your observations of the officer.
- The officer's stated reasons for stopping you.
- Whether the officer asked or ordered you to take roadside tests.
- Your performance on roadside tests.
- Statements you made to the officer.
- What the results were of any breath or blood tests.
- Whether there were witnesses to your arrest.
- Whether you were observed for 20 minutes prior to a breath test.
What are the 4 items crucial to your defense?
- A good investigation of the facts.
- Vigorous cross-examination.
- A sound understanding of constitutional principles.
- An experienced attorney.
What is the one thing your attorney must do to raise objections based on
the Summons and Complaint?
Appear in person for your arraignment.
Why a jury trial is advisable:
Six people have to agree on your guilt instead of one.
What is necessary to get a jury trial?
You automatically have a right to a jury trial.
How the arresting officer's testimony can be discredited:
- Inconsistent statements.
- Failure to recollect.
5 requirements which must be followed for chemical and roadside tests to be valid:
- The officer must have had a reasonable suspicion that you were violating the law.
- The officer must have either had probable cause to arrest you or obtain
your consent for roadside tests.
- The officer must tell you that you have a right to refuse a portable breath
- The officer must have probable cause before he arrests you and before he
requires you to take a chemical test.
- The officer must give you your Miranda rights after you are arrested, if
he is going to interrogate you.
What are the 2 key pieces of information which must be learned in deciding
to go to trial?
- An estimation of the weaknesses and strengths of the State's case against you.
- The effect of a conviction.
How to determine if you can plea bargain, and at what step you should do it.
It's a cost benefit analysis. How much do you have to defend your case?
What effect will this arrest have on my license and when will I be able to drive?
If your blood alcohol was over the legal limit or you refused a test, you
may not be able to drive at all for 90 days to a year or more. If you
are convicted in Court, you may be faced with a suspension, but you may
apply for a probationary license. You can drive when you have a valid
license given to you by the Division of Motor Vehicles.
How to save your license if you're found guilty in court?
Request a ignition interlock license if you are suspended.
What 4 preliminary motions should be filed, and the danger to you if they
- Motion to suppress evidence on the ground that you were unconstitutionally stopped.
- Motion to suppress evidence on the grounds that there was an unconstitutional
search and seizure.
- Motion to suppress statements on failure to give Miranda rights.
- Motion for Discovery of all evidence.
If these motions are not filed, your case may not be dismissed when it
should have been. You may not be told about evidence which would prove
9 defense tactics in pre-trial motions:
- Contest the constitutionality of the stop.
- Contest the constitutionality of the administration of roadside tests.
- Contest the constitutionality of the probable cause to arrest.
- Contest the constitutionality of the Miranda rights.
- Contest the manner in which roadside tests were given
- Contest the use of a Portable Breath Tester.
- Contest the constitutionality of any search and seizure.
- Contest the admissibility of the breath test machine (BAC).
- Contest the admissibility of any blood test.