New York State takes driving while intoxicated (DWI) charges very seriously. Upon conviction, an individual can face serious penalties that have the potential to impact them for the rest of their life. That is why it is important for individuals who are facing these charges to retain the services of an attorney. A competent Nassau County DUI lawyer can review the details of the case to possibly challenge the evidence of your DWI case in court. Continue reading below to learn more about how this can be done.
How to Challenge DWI Evidence in NYS
All drivers should be aware of the rights they have when they are pulled over by a police officer on the road. A person’s lack of awareness can sometimes cause them more trouble. If a driver is pulled over for a suspected DWI, it is important to be aware that both the United States and New York Constitutions protect them from illegal police stops. Officers are required to have a valid reason to stop a car on the road, otherwise, it is considered an illegal stop and any evidence that is gathered from it can be inadmissible in court.
The public health law in New York requires all law enforcement officers to observe a driver for at least 20 minutes before they can conduct a chemical breath test for a suspected DWI. During this observation, they are looking for any signs that indicate the driver is intoxicated. This can include signs of regurgitation, such as belching or vomiting. Any deviation from this rule could be used as a defense in court to block the results of the breath test from being used against the driver.
Field Sobriety Tests
When a driver is pulled over for a suspected DWI, they may be asked to take part in a series of field sobriety tests conducted by the law enforcement officer. These are designed to test a driver’s motor skills and balance to see if they are intoxicated. If the driver shows signs of intoxication, the officer may have reason to believe that they are under the influence and can charge them with a DWI. The three most common field sobriety tests include the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus test, the Walk and Turn test, and the One Leg Stand test. Each test has its own guidelines regarding how it must be administered. The officer is required to give instructions, demonstrate how the test is to be completed, and establish that the driver understands the directions.
Some of the defenses for a failed Field Sobriety Test are:
- The officer did not read all of the instructions
- The officer did not demonstrate the test
- The officer did not inform the individual they are permitted to remove high heels
- The individual has health issues that make passing the test impossible
If you have any other questions or you’d like to learn more about how our firm can help you, please don’t hesitate to give us a call today.