Driving Under the Influence (D.U.I.) causes tremendous losses every year in the United States. As a response, legislatures have steadily increased penalties for convictions. In 2011, Money Magazine estimated that a D.U.I. conviction costs the motorist approximately $10,000 on average. In 2014, Bankrate.com increased the D.U.I. cost estimate to $20,000. Facing such penalties, some people try to minimize the damage by handling their case themselves, without the benefit of an attorney. To paraphrase Henry Kett, people who represent themselves have a fool for a client.
There is hope. Since 2000, I have handled hundreds of D.U.I. cases ranging from misdemeanors to felonies. D.U.I. is a serious criminal matter, whether or not it is filed as a traffic case. Like all criminal matters, D.U.I. charges require the State (or City) to prove every part of their case beyond a reasonable doubt. Like every criminal case, the State must overcome the defendant’s presumption of innocence, show probable cause for the initial law enforcement contact, probable cause of arrest, and proof of every part of the case beyond a reasonable doubt. Unlike many other types of cases, however, D.U.I. is very “science-intensive.” Those who do not understand the science behind D.U.I. cannot hope to understand the case completely.
In this series of posts, I will try to explain the various parts of a D.U.I. charge. I will discuss what the actual law is (and is not) in the State of Alabama. I will discuss law enforcement contact and additional requirements for arrest. I will discuss the science behind D.U.I. – and the pseudo-science which often finds its way into courtrooms. As new information comes out, I will try to update this blog to give you the best information possible.
D.U.I. is a serious crime. It is among the most costly misdemeanors. There is hope if you are facing this charge. Contact me today to discuss your case and begin preparing your defense.