A DUI conviction in Texas can affect almost every sector of your life. For example, it will make it way harder to get a job, you’ll pay high insurance premiums, and it can impact your marriage or child custody order. So, if any of the following defenses apply to your unique situation, it might be helpful to consider them.
Possible constitutional defenses to DUI
If the police pulled you over without probable cause or a warrant, anything they found as a result of that stop—including evidence of intoxication—may be suppressed. Probable cause generally exists if an officer has observed suspicious behavior (like swerving) or if there is an anonymous tip that someone is driving drunk. If the stop was illegal, then the case is unconstitutional.
If you were read Miranda rights and confessed to drinking but weren’t given a chance to speak with a criminal defense attorney, that confession may not be admissible in court. Under Texas law, officers must inform suspects of their right to remain silent and to have an attorney present during questioning.
If the chemical test results were inaccurate, that could be a defense to DUI charges. For example, if the machine wasn’t calibrated correctly or the officer didn’t follow proper protocol when administering the test, those results may be inaccurate.
Field sobriety test defenses
Just because you failed a field sobriety test doesn’t mean you’re automatically guilty of DUI. Unrelated factors that may affect this test include but are not limited to your weight, age, the surface you’re standing on, weather conditions and whether you have any injuries.
It’s also important to remember that you have the right to refuse a field sobriety test. However, if you do refuse, the officer may still arrest you, and your license may be suspended for 180 days.
When you understand your rights, it can be difficult for a police officer to take advantage of you. It could be helpful to be watchful of mistakes police officers make during an arrest, as you can build up a defense from that.