Probable Causes for a DWI or DUI arrest


Police in the US can only detain or investigate a person if they have a valid reason. This is referred to as probable cause, and in the case of a driving while intoxicated (DWI) charge, it is important that there was probable cause for being stopped in the first place, let alone being subjected to a field sobriety test (FST) or a breathalyzer test.

In the US, blood-alcohol content of .08 or over is considered DWI. However, even if you are driving legally under the limit you could be still be drunk without showing signs either in behavior or perception; so there shouldn’t be any reason as to why you should be pulled over. If this has happened to you and you were ultimately arrested for DWI, it is recommended that you find a qualified DWI attorney in your area to help you achieve justice for this wrongdoing.

There are several actions that constitute probable cause for pulling over a vehicle. These actions are including but not limited to:

  • Speeding
  • Erratic driving
  • Swerving
  • No valid inspection sticker
  • Broken tail lights
  • Failure to obey traffic lights
  • Expired plates
  • Failure to use turn signals
  • Loud exhaust

The police can only pull you over if you initially did something wrong, or they have a good basis for suspecting some illegal activity; such as a tip from another person, or personally witnessed the behavior. Once that is established, only then can they require you to take the FST and chemical test if they:

  • Smell alcohol in your breath or in the car
  • See cans of beer or other alcoholic beverage containers
  • Witness slurred speech, erratic movements, or strange behavior

Failure of the police to prove probable cause at either the stoppage or test administration in any DWI charge can result in a dismissal of all charges. This can greatly affect you if you have been arrested for DWI; a DWI conviction is a serious matter, so hiring the right attorney is critical. A DWI attorney¬†will make sure that probable cause can be established so that your case doesn’t have to be more difficult than it needs to be. If you’ve been charged with this kind of alcohol related crime, having an experienced legal profession by your side may help you reduce punishment or protect your license. Your life may be effected by a DWI charge if you do not take action as soon as possible.

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