Five Ways to Sabotage Your DUI Defense

Here are a few actions that you should avoid during your DUI case.

If you’ve been arrested for drunk driving, certain actions or behaviors can complicate your case by casting doubt on your credibility, intent, or reliability. If you do any of the five activities below you may negatively influence the case.

1. Talk About Your DUI on Social Media

Avoid discussing your DUI charges on social media outlets. Nothing will sink your case more quickly than if you brag on your Facebook or Twitter account that you’re going to "get out of a DUI" because of reasons X, Y or Z. Contrary to popular belief, the prosecution can access your social media profiles, even if they are "Friends Only" or are hidden behind other privacy settings. Play it safe, and don’t mention your DUI arrest online.

2. Party Like Its 1999

Your goal, prior to your DUI hearing (and trial) is to not draw any attention to yourself – that is, to avoid displays of public intoxication or other displays or activities that will influence the court’s discretionary decisions. This is particularly true in smaller towns where negative news about an individual spreads quickly. Hard as it may be, try to limit drinking and partying until your DUI is resolved.

3.  Drive During License Suspension

If you violate your suspension or any other terms that the court has imposed on you, you not only could face hundreds or even thousands of dollars in monetary fines, but you also could be subject to increased jail time or a longer term of suspension

4. Fail to Show Up for Your Court Date

If you don’t show up for your assigned DUI court date, a bench warrant will be issued for your arrest, and you may spend the rest of your time in jail without the ability to bond out while waiting for your trial. This is also a stain on your record; it will affect the court’s reception of your case, cast doubt on your willingness to cooperate, your reliability and your understanding of the severity of your charges. It will reflect negatively, should you be arrested in the future and likely will hurt your chances of being treated with leniency.

5. Fail to Get a Lawyer

You may be able to handle your DUI defense by yourself, but failing to get legal assistance may sink your case. The technical stipulations of administrative license suspensions, court dates, driving restrictions, local traffic code – these can all be overwhelming for any non-lawyer to understand. By securing legal representation, you are giving yourself an informed voice in the courtroom to argue on your behalf. Will you know to object when the prosecution introduces evidence or testimony that violates evidentiary procedure? Will you be able to cross-examine your arresting officer and quiz him or her about the procedure for administering field sobriety tests and chemical blood alcohol content exams?

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