11 Ways You Can Get DUI Charges Dropped Completely

Posted: January 15, 2022 at 12:00 am

After a DUI arrest, you will need to appear before a judge for arraignment. You might feel at that point you have no choice but to endure the stressful and humiliating events that lie ahead. But it’s vital you fight back, and you can start by choosing to work with DUI attorneys near me, meaning finding attorneys in or near Lenexa, KS. They will strive to build a defense in which charges may be completely dropped, allowing you to get on with your life.

Ask DUI Attorneys Near Me: 11 Ways to Get DUI Charges Dropped Completely in Lenexa, KS

1. Witness Statements

If you were at a bar or party and others witnessed your behavior, their statements may help you beat a DUI charge. Drinking history often plays an important role in DUI cases. A bartender or friend who can testify that you were at first sober and had only a few drinks can substantiate a claim of sobriety.

Expert witnesses may also be called to review complex evidence like sobriety, blood, and breath tests. Results from these tests are not always reliable, leading to occasional false arrests in Lenexa, KS. Other medical issues, such as diabetes and epilepsy, can also be mistaken for intoxication. Experts can use a combination of previous research and qualified opinions to refute false claims of intoxication.

An Anonymous Witness

Sometimes, an anonymous witness may have called the police or 911 to report erratic driving. But if that witness does not show up in court to testify, their evidence may be completely excluded from the trial. In addition, the arresting officer must have witnessed bad driving prior to pulling you over. If they cannot satisfy this requirement, the stop may be deemed illegal – and your case can then be dismissed by the court.

2. Common Problems with Tests

Just a moment ago, we mentioned the results from field sobriety tests can be inaccurate. A person who is overweight or aged 65 or older may have trouble completing a test and, in turn, appear to be under the influence. Even an injury or pre-existing medical condition can skew results.

A Degree of Unreliability

The tests themselves are similarly unreliable. Breath tests can be influenced by a variety of factors, including failure to follow the machine’s operational instructions, the machine’s inherent inaccuracies, and general malfunctions.

Sobriety tests can likewise be improperly administered. Every officer who graduates from a policy academy must successfully complete field sobriety test training provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). But this training occurs very early in an officer’s career and is followed only by occasional “refresher” training that rarely meets the requirements set forth by the NHTSA.

Poor Interpretation of Results and Invalid Testing

In some cases, the arresting officer scores a field test improperly because they’re unfamiliar with scoring conditions. This can lead to an artificially high indicator of impairment. DUI attorneys near me – that is, those in Lenexa, KS – will analyze your field test results and identify if they were poorly interpreted.

Lastly, you should know the NHTSA has approved only a handful of field tests as reliably indicating impairment. These are the One Leg Stand, Walk and Turn, and Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus. Officers will, however, step outside of these guidelines and ask drivers to perform an alphabet test, count backward, or complete a finger dexterity exam. These tests have not been shown to provide scientifically significant validation when determining sobriety.

3. Failure to Observe 20 Minutes

Officers in the state of Kansas must continuously monitor a driver for 20 minutes before administering a breath test. Failure to observe this period can impact the reliability of the breath test’s results. In other words, if your arresting officer didn’t observe the proper 20-minute period, your test results could be deemed invalid and inadmissible.

4. Speedy Trial Violation

The United States Constitution demands that court cases be brought to completion without undue delay. In Kansas, cases must generally be taken to trial within 180 days of arraignment. If any delay is owed to the government or court, the charges must be dismissed.

5. When Testing Was Refuted

If you refuse to submit to any field sobriety test – including a preliminary breath test – the government is forced to prove you were intoxicated to such an extent that you could not safely operate a vehicle. When this evidence cannot be sufficiently provided, the government must rely on the officer’s testimony and your appearance while on video. This significantly weakens the prosecution’s case – and can help get charges dismissed.

6. Improper Handling of Evidence

Test results are sometimes inaccurate simply because the arresting officer mishandled the evidence. To illustrate, a blood draw may be improperly packaged or stored, thus compromising the test results.

Additional elements that can contaminate blood samples include poor lab procedures, inadequate sanitization of the draw site, and improper procedures during the blood draw. Your attorney will review the specifics of your case and look for inconsistencies in evidence handling. If such inconsistencies are found, your lawyer may move to have the case dismissed.

7. An Unreliable Officer

Many officers fight to ensure justice is served, but some are less honorable. If the arresting officer on your case has a disciplinary record, produced inconsistent police reports, or made conflicting statements about your case, that officer may lack credibility. The best way to make this determination is by thoroughly reviewing the videos and reports that pertain to your case. 

Officers may also go too far and make misleading statements or coerce you into giving a breath sample or consenting to a blood draw. Any evidence collected as a result of poor officer behavior may be suppressed during the trial.

8. Poor Driving Conditions

Even when sober, your driving can be influenced by a number of conditions, including:

  • Snowy roads
  • Low visibility from fog
  • High winds
  • Lanes narrowed by construction

These conditions can also lead to poor performance on field sobriety tests. The point is that your lawyer will want a full description of the weather and roads at the time of your arrest.

9. Illegal Stop

Officers must provide a reasonable explanation for having stopped you in the first place. In other words, they can’t stop you based simply on a hunch. If they do, they have violated the United States Constitution – and your case may very well be tossed from court.

10. Unlawful Stop Extension

After a traffic stop, officers cannot legally start a new crime investigation unless they have articulable reason to believe a new crime has been committed. This means an officer cannot pull you over for speeding and instantly start a DUI investigation unless specific facts justify the new investigation.

11. Plea Bargain

A plea bargain is perhaps the most obvious (and most common) way to get DUI charges dropped. A plea bargain is simply an agreement made between you, the defendant, and the prosecutor in which you will likely plead guilty to different charges. You might, for instance, plead guilty to the lesser charge of speeding or even the more serious charge of careless driving. Either, however, will keep a DUI off your permanent driving record.

Following a DUI charge, you might feel all hope is lost. But an online search for DUI attorneys near me – or, rather, near you – can quickly prove otherwise. It is indeed possible to get the charges dropped. You simply need an experienced, knowledgeable attorney who will assess the evidence and build a strong case that protects your rights. Schedule your free consultation today by contacting Henderson Legal Defense, LLC, Attorneys at Law.