DUI or driving under the influence is a criminal act in California. Since this is a crime founded on circumstantial evidence, there are many ways that errors can be committed leading to issues with regards to the legality of the arrest. Since this is the case, there are many available defenses to an individual facing a DUI charge in court, some of which are as follows:
- Probable Cause. Probable cause is the existence of exigent facts that would lead a reasonable man to the conclusion that a crime has been committed. If there is no probable cause, then the arrest and other subsequent police actions are deemed invalidated;
- Unlawful Arrest. Arresting an individual presupposes that a crime has been committed. If there is no crime, then the arrest was illegal;
- BAC is below lawful limit. When the police officer conducts a breathalyzer test and the results would be below the limit, then there is no probable cause for DUI;
- Field Sobriety Tests conducted are invalid. The conduct of field sobriety tests leaves to police officers the leeway in the determination of whether or not the crime of DUI has been committed. Because of the subjectivity, this may open up the defense that the tests conducted were invalid.
Because much of the evidence is circumstantial, the validity and veracity of the evidence presented in court is always in question. There are two kinds of evidence presented in court for DUI cases. The first one is direct evidence or evidence observable through the use of the individual’s senses. The second kind is circumstantial, which is the crux of the case in DUI cases. These kinds of evidence help in making inferences as to the occurrence of the crime. In DUI cases, these are the reports made by police officers, testimony by other individuals and test results.
The applicable defenses for the crime of driving under the influence are serious matters in California. Should you be or know anyone undergoing this process, do reach out to the lawyers at the Law Offices of Ramiro J. Lluis for a free consultation today.