Many people mistakenly assume that any criminal defense attorney can adequately handle a DWI case. The truth is that DWI cases are very complex and require experience with particular statutes, training methods, evidentiary issues, and several other complicated issues. This article is intended to give you an overview of the things you should consider and the questions you should ask of an attorney before hiring him or her to handle your DWI case.
- Do not let an attorney tell you a DWI case cannot be won.
There are many attorneys who will tell their clients that DWI cases are impossible to beat and he or she can only work with the prosecutor to mitigate the possible sentence. If an attorney is telling you this without hearing the specific facts of your case you should think twice before hiring him or her. While DWI cases are very difficult, the towel should not be thrown in without a thorough investigation.
A good attorney will investigate the facts surrounding the roadside tests, the police reports, and the breath test. Flaws in any of these pieces of evidence could mean the difference between a conviction and an acquittal.
- Know the training manual
The police are required to follow a training manual when administering roadside sobriety tests. In many instances the officer will deviate from the manual, either by neglecting to follow specific instructions contained in the manual, or by administering additional tests beyond what the manual requires. If an attorney is not familiar with the training manual, he cannot compare the officer’s conduct to the required standards.
- Know the rules regarding the Alcotest breath analyzer.
There are specific rules that must be followed regarding the maintenance and use of the Alcotest machines. These rules are very detailed. It is imperative that a thorough analysis be done to determine the test operator’s conformity with the rules. Some of the requirements for proper administration include:
- The operator is certified
- The machine is certified
- The machine logs are current
- The mouthpiece has been changed before use
- The calibration solution is properly stored and changed
- Minimal variation between multiple test results
As was the case with the training manuals, if your attorney does not know the requirements, he or she cannot properly challenge an officer’s failure to conform to those requirements.
At the Law Offices of Jef Henninger, Esq., our aggressive DWI lawyers are very familiar with all aspects of DWI and criminal defense law and will tenaciously fight for the best possible result in your case. Do not settle for sub par legal representation. Your future is on the line and you need an attorney who will protect your rights. To see what our law firm can do for you, call our 24/7 hotline and schedule a free initial consultation with one of our professional criminal defense lawyers at 732-773-2768.