Drinking and driving can be a hazardous combination. If you are involved in an accident while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you could face serious penalties. However, there are defenses available that could be used to obtain a favorable outcome in a criminal case.
Was the Other Driver Responsible for the Accident?
If the other driver involved in the accident ran a red light prior to the collision, he or she is likely responsible for the accident. The same may be true if another vehicle ran a stop sign prior to an accident occurring. In most states, you would not be responsible for another person’s negligence regardless of your mental or physical condition while operating a motor vehicle.
Were You Legally Impaired?
The first thing an attorney such as those from the Maltezos Law Offices would likely do is challenge the assertion that you were legally impaired. For instance, it may be possible to question the results of a blood, breath or urine test done at the scene of an accident. It could also be possible to assert that you had a medical condition or a problem with your vehicle that made it seem like you were drunk when an accident occurred.
Were You Knowingly Impaired?
If another person gave you a drink that they claimed was nonalcoholic in nature, you could argue that you didn’t knowingly consume alcohol prior to driving. You could also claim that someone slipped a substance into your food or drink that resulted in impaired driving. Finally, it could be argued that you were forced to consume alcohol or use a controlled substance against your will.
Were Poor Weather Conditions Present?
In the event that an accident occurred because of poor weather, it could be possible to argue that driver impairment wasn’t the proximate cause. An attorney may also argue that poor road design was what ultimately caused the crash to occur. While you may still face penalties related to the DUI, you may not face elevated penalties that can be levied against those responsible for an accident caused by an impaired driver.
While drinking and driving can be dangerous, it doesn’t mean that you were at fault for an accident. An attorney can review physical and witness evidence in a case to defend an individual during criminal proceedings. In some cases, you may be given a plea deal or have a case dismissed entirely depending on what the evidence shows.
About the Author: Lizzie Weakley is a freelance writer from Columbus, Ohio. She went to college at The Ohio State University where she studied communications. In her free time, she enjoys the outdoors and long walks in the park with her husky Snowball. You can find her on Twitter at @LizzieWeakley and on Facebook at facebook.com/lizzie.weakley.