McDonald Pierangeli Macfarlane, PLLC

Defenses commonly used to fight a drunk driving charge

Being pulled over for suspicion of driving under the influence (DUI) in Grand Rapids, Michigan, is stressful. Even if the officer initiated the traffic stop for another reason (speeding, swerving, failure to use a turn signal or another violation), the traffic stop can quickly turn into a DUI investigation. Let's take a look at some of the defenses that are commonly used to fight a drunk driving charge in today's post.

Duress is a defense used when the driver has been threatened with violence or death if they do not operate their vehicle. For example, they might have been carjacked or someone could have threatened to kill them if they didn't drive from one location to another.

Mistake of fact is a defense used when the subject honestly believed he or she was not intoxicated when getting behind the wheel. The most common example of this defense is having the belief that their prescription medication has worn off by the time they drove their vehicle.

Entrapment is when a police officer somehow convinces a subject to either get drunk and then drive or tells them to drive away from an area when they know the subject is already intoxicated. This is one of the more difficult defenses to prove.

Improper stop is a defense that is often successful. The police are required to only make a traffic stop if they have reasonable cause, which means that the driver must have violated a traffic law.

Drunk driving charges can put you behind bars for quite a long time, especially if this is your second or subsequent DUI arrest. It's important to mount a strong defense to these charges in an effort to protect your freedom.

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