If you have recently been charged with driving under the influence, DUI, in Nebraska for the first time you are probably feeling both worried and confused. It is perfectly normal to be worried about the outcome of your case and understandable that you would be feeling confused if you have no experienced with the criminal justice system. Your first step should be to retain the services of an experienced DUI defense attorney. If you have never needed the services of a criminal attorney before, you may continue to be confused by some of the questions your attorney asks you. To help clear up at least some of your confusion, an Omaha DUI defense lawyer explains some of the questions you will likely be asked by your attorney about the day you were arrested.
- Did the officer tell you why he/she stopped you? Contrary to popular belief, a law enforcement officer is actually required to have a legally acceptable reason or stopping a motorist. If the officer did not have a valid reason the entire stop could be declared inadmissible.
- Did the officer write you a ticket? If the officer never issued a citation, despite claiming that he/she has a legal reason for the stop, this can be relevant to show that the officer really did not have a reason for the stop.
- Were there any passengers in the vehicle? Passengers can be your best, or worst, witnesses if your case goes to trial. Whether they will be helpful or harmful, your attorney needs to know ahead of time.
- What did you consume prior to driving? It is crucial that you are honest with your attorney when you answer this question. If you took any controlled substances, legal or otherwise, you need to tell your attorney about them as well as about any alcohol you consumed during the hours prior to getting behind the wheel.
- When did you start and stop drinking? There are a number of factors that impact how alcohol is metabolized by the human body. Time is one of those. If, for example, you only had a drink or two right before you got behind the wheel, it is possible that you have a defense known as the “Rising Alcohol Level” defense. In essence, the argument is that you were not over the limit at the time you were stopped; however, because your blood alcohol concentration continued to rise after you were stopped you tested over the limit by the time you took the breath test.
- Where were you prior to driving? This may also provide a helpful witness if people can testify that you did not consume alcohol – or did not consume much.
- When was the last time you ate? Food also impacts how alcohol is metabolized in your system.
- Was there a video camera in the officer’s vehicle? The prosecution is supposed to provide your attorney with the video if there was one; however, they are reluctant to admit there is one sometimes so let your attorney know if you noticed a video camera.
- Do you have any medical conditions? Certain medical conditions can interfere with your ability to perform the field sobriety tests and/or can cause the results of a chemical test to be inaccurate.
- Did you refuse the chemical test? Sometimes an officer will claim a suspect refused the chemical test when, in fact, the suspect did not refuse. It may be that you were unable to complete the test because you were intoxicated or because you have a medical condition that interfered with your ability to complete the test. Whatever the reason, if the officer claims you refused, and you did not, your attorney needs to know because you can challenge the refusal but you only have a short period of time within which to do so.
If you have been charged with driving under the influence (DUI) in the State of Nebraska, contact the Petersen Law Office 24 hours a day at 402-513-2180 to discuss your case with an experienced Omaha DUI defense lawyer.