Evidentiary Issues in DUI Cases

Posted On: February 4th, 2015 by Bradley J. Groene

While the evidence police have in Cincinnati DUI cases can be very convincing, sometimes it doesn’t tell the whole story. Pointing out flaws in the way evidence was collected or in the ways it is being used in a DUI case is often the key to getting a charge dismissed. Experienced Cincinnati DUI lawyers know this, and therefore need to thoroughly inspect all evidence police plan to use before a trial. There are certain evidentiary issues that often come up, and when they do, that evidence may be excluded by the judge. There are two main evidentiary issues that are often raised in a Cincinnati DUI case.

Evidence Collected Improperly

One evidentiary issue often raised in DUI cases is that it is inadmissible due to being collected improperly or in violation of your rights. Sometimes when police make an arrest in a DUI case, they do so without probable cause, tainting any evidence found afterwards. If the police officer did not have legal justification to pull you over or arrest you in the first place, any evidence they got from the traffic stop may be deemed inadmissible by the court. For example, if you are pulled over due to your race or because of something not illegal, the stop and all evidence collected from it may be thrown out. This can leave the prosecution with no real case, so charges may be dropped.

However, in DUI cases, this often is difficult to prove, as “driving recklessly” is fairly subjective. Still, evidence can be collected improperly if the police officer failed to follow proper legal procedures during your arrest. Police are required by law to give you your Miranda warnings and follow proper procedures to respect your rights. If you are not told your rights or other rights are violated, you may have a case to have evidence rejected for this reason.

Tainted Evidence

Another evidentiary issue often raised it that the evidence could have been tainted or influenced by outside factors in some way. For example, if a chemical test, such as a breath or blood test, is administered incorrectly, it can give a false reading above legal limits. There are strict guidelines for administering chemical tests and if those guidelines are not followed, there may be grounds to get rid of that test. A test can be tainted by faulty equipment, mixed samples, and many other issues. It is important to bring these issues up.

In other cases, evidence may have been influenced by outside factors. An officer may testify that your eyes were bloodshot or that you couldn’t walk in a straight line, but this evidence may not be as convincing when explained by other logical factors. For example, maybe you suffer from allergies or have physical impairments that impede your ability to do a field sobriety test. Sometimes even outside witnesses can testify that you were not drinking or that you seemed sober to them. If the evidence is put in its proper light, it may not be as damaging to your case.

Just remember, in most DUI cases, the evidence is important for both sides to make a proper case. You can learn more about other defenses and evidentiary issues in DUI cases here. If you think that the evidence against you has been used unfairly or that it has issues, you need an experienced DUI attorney to help you show that to the court. If you have been arrested for a Cincinnati OVI, call Luftman, Heck & Associates at (513) 338-1890 for a free consultation on your particular case with Cincinnati DUI attorney Brad Groene.