We were contacted this very morning (Sunday- yes we see clients on Sundays) by a poor guy that was stopped while driving his truck because his fender was hanging too low. Deputy Doughnut smelled alcohol on his breath and demanded the fields (which you do not have to perform). Following the fields, which the accused thought went well, the accused was arrested. At the police station he blew a .06 and was charged with DWI, (driving while impaired). He has two questions:
1. How can I be arrested for DWI while blowing under the legal limit of .08?
2. Did my number get lower as a result of exhaling or breathing out my nose and mouth?
As we know from my numerous earlier posts on the subject, you can and will be arrested even for blowing a low blood alcohol number. The legal limit advertised on TV and road signs is .08, that is a governments dirty little secret. The cops don't give a hoot about the number because they know they can get you anyway! If you blow a .04-.07 or lower, they can and will arrest you; particularly if you exhibit weird behavior such as driving erratically, or poor field tests (which you should not be doing) or acting strange or showing other signs of impaired coordination. One's BAC (blood alcohol content) is a great tool for the police and courts to convict you of DUI, but in the absence of .08 BAC number, the cops simply look for other behavior that supports their witch hunt. Poor performance on the field tests is more then adequate to support that endeavor.
Robinson & Associates DUI Firm has been called upon to defend all numbers in DWI cases and we win the overwhelming majority of such cases. However, I remember years ago in Carroll County with a recently retired judge, we had a .06 case and the client was under 21 so the judge must have thought he would use the experience as a learning lesson for that young man and he convicted the client of the DWI charge despite the low BAC. In my 20 years experience that is the only case that comes to mind that we have not been able to beat on a low number. But nonetheless, the clients are still charged, lawyers have to be retained, the case needs to be tried, the client is put through the emotional ringer, etc.