How to Protect Your Legal Rights after a DUI Stop in Connecticut
Getting pulled over and accused of drunk driving can be a nerve-wracking experience. In all likelihood, if a Connecticut police officer believes you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs, you’ll be arrested on the spot, your car will be towed, and you’ll booked and held for several hours at least. In some cases, you may even need to post bail to get out of jail, which could cost you or your family several thousands of dollars.
If you have found yourself on this page, it is likely that a DUI arrest is already behind you. At this point, you are probably asking yourself, “What should I do now?” The good news is that a knowledgeable lawyer can help you if you’ve been arrested for DUI, regardless of whether you “blew,” performed sobriety testing, or even admitted that you had been drinking at the time you were arrested.
Protect Your Rights by Retaining an Attorney Immediately
In many DUI cases, there are legal defenses that may weaken the prosecution’s case against you, either by excluding evidence from your case or by calling the accuracy of evidence into question. Some of the more common include the following:
- Establishing that you have a medical condition that can cause symptoms that can be mistaken for signs of alcohol intoxication or that can cause unreliably high Breathalyzer readings
- Arguing that the initial traffic stop was illegal
- Introducing evidence that indicates the Breathalyzer device used in your case was improperly calibrated
- Showing that the officer who arrested you lacked the training required to perform sobriety testing
Even in cases where there are no defenses available, a lawyer often can help you obtain a favorable plea bargain from the prosecutor handling your case. Your attorney may even be able to get you into a diversionary program that will result in the dismissal of your case (provided you complete the terms of the program), allowing you to legally state that you have no criminal record.
A DUI Arrest Isn’t a DUI Conviction
As a driver, you should keep in mind that a traffic stop and subsequent arrest are just the start of a DUI case, and much legal wrangling and negotiation can occur after your first contact with law enforcement. In fact, it is not uncommon for a DUI case to be stretched out over several months if there are legitimately contested legal or factual issues.
From the moment you are pulled over, the officer or officers who stopped you are looking for evidence of anything that may warrant further investigation. As a result, they will observe your appearance, your speech, your mannerisms, whether you seem nervous, and anything else that could potentially tip them off to the fact that you are under the influence or engaging in another criminal activity.
For this reason, you should say and do as little as possible during a traffic stop – regardless of whether you have been drinking. Generally speaking, the police do not ask you “Where you are headed?” or “Where are you coming from?” because they are interested; they want to observe your reaction.
Remember, you have the legal right to refuse to perform any sobriety tests and can even refuse a roadside Breathalyzer test, although doing so could result in the suspension of your driver’s license. Importantly, however, there are ways to challenge the administrative suspension of your license after a Breathalyzer refusal; not being able to drive after a refusal is not necessarily a foregone conclusion.
Call Duffy Law Today to Discuss Your Case with a Connecticut DUI Defense Lawyer
If you have been pulled over and accused of drunk driving, it is important to contact an attorney as soon as you can. The experienced DUI defense attorneys at Duffy Law have the experience and knowledge required to protect your legal rights and will ensure that your case is resolved as favorably as possible. To schedule a consultation with one of our lawyers, call our office today at 203-946-2000 or contact us online.