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Bucher Law Group, LLC

Possible Defenses for an OWI Charge

 Posted on June 07, 2024 in Criminal Defense

Dodge County criminal defense lawyerFacing an OWI (Operating While Intoxicated) charge in Wisconsin can be a stressful experience, but remember that you have rights and there are potential defenses available. A Wisconsin lawyer can help protect your rights and explore every possible avenue to achieve the best outcome for your case.

Challenge the Traffic Stop

When building a defense, one of the first things to consider is whether the initial traffic stop was lawful. Police officers must have probable cause or reasonable suspicion to pull you over. The court could deem any evidence gathered during the stop inadmissible if the police officers lacked a valid reason. Your attorney will closely examine the circumstances surrounding the stop to determine if the police violated your rights.

Question Field Sobriety Tests

Field sobriety tests, such as the walk-and-turn or one-leg stand, are often used by officers to establish probable cause for an arrest. However, these tests are not always reliable indicators of impairment. Factors like poor weather conditions, uneven surfaces, or medical conditions can impact a person’s performance. Your lawyer may challenge the validity of these tests and argue that they do not provide sufficient evidence of intoxication.

Scrutinize Your Chemical Test Results

Your attorney will carefully review the results if you submit to a breath or blood test. Breathalyzer machines must be regularly calibrated and maintained to ensure accurate readings. If there are any discrepancies or issues with the testing equipment, your lawyer may be able to have the results suppressed. Blood samples must also be properly collected, stored, and analyzed to maintain the chain of custody and prevent contamination.

Raise Medical Defenses

Sometimes, medical conditions or medications can lead to false positives on chemical tests or mimic signs of impairment. For example, certain medical conditions like acid reflux or diabetes can cause a person to have a higher blood alcohol content (BAC) reading. If you have any relevant medical issues, your attorney will gather evidence and consult with medical experts to support your defense.

Examine Police Procedures

Law enforcement officers must follow strict protocols when conducting an OWI investigation and making an arrest. If they fail to adhere to proper procedures, such as not reading your Miranda rights or not having probable cause for the arrest, your lawyer may argue that your rights were violated. Any evidence obtained through improper police conduct could be challenged and potentially excluded from your case.

You May Negotiate Plea Bargains

Negotiating a plea bargain may be in your best interest in certain situations. Your attorney will assess the strength of the prosecution’s case and discuss your options with you. A lawyer can often negotiate for reduced charges or alternative sentencing, such as participation in a substance abuse treatment program, to minimize the impact on your life. No two OWI cases are the same, so the most successful defense strategy will vary based on the specific facts of your case.

Contact a Dodge County, WI Criminal Defense Lawyer

When you face an OWI charge, do not hesitate to reach out for legal guidance. A Walworth, WI criminal defense attorney can work towards protecting your rights, your freedom, and your future. Call Bucher Law Group, LLC at 262-303-4916 for a free consultation today to discuss your case and explore your options.

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