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4 things to know about challenging a DWI charge

DWI charges can be a serious matter, but challenging them in New York requires careful consideration of specific factors.

If you find yourself facing such charges, there are four key aspects you should keep in mind as you build your defense.

1. Sobriety test accuracy

One element to examine when challenging a DWI charge in New York is the accuracy of the sobriety tests conducted during the traffic stop. These tests, such as the walk-and-turn or one-leg stand, must adhere to strict standards. It is important to assess whether the administering officer followed proper procedures and if the testing conditions were ideal. Any deviations could cast doubt on the reliability of the results.

2. Breath test calibration

Another significant factor to scrutinize is the calibration of the breath test device used to measure blood alcohol content. The accuracy of BAC readings is a necessity in a DWI case. Any lapses in calibration or maintenance may raise doubts about the validity of the BAC results and provide grounds for challenging the charge.

3. Traffic stop legitimacy

Challenging a DWI charge may involve examining the legitimacy of the initial traffic stop. The officer must have reasonable suspicion or probable cause to pull you over. Review the circumstances surrounding the stop and determine whether the officer followed proper protocol. If there were any procedural irregularities, it could weaken the prosecution’s case.

4. Witness statements and video evidence

Collecting witness statements and video evidence from the scene can be instrumental in challenging a DWI charge. Eyewitness accounts or footage from surveillance cameras may reveal discrepancies in the officer’s narrative or provide alternative perspectives on the events leading to the arrest.

In 2020, the CDC estimated 127 million incidents of alcohol-impaired driving occurred in the U.S. For anyone arrested, that outcome is not always set in stone. The right defense can enhance the chance of a favorable outcome.