If you’ve been arrested for a DWII, you’re probably wondering what the odds of getting DWI charges dropped are. The answer depends on the circumstances of your case, but having an experienced DWI lawyer and strong evidence in your favor can increase the chances that a prosecutor may drop or reduce your charge.
What is a DWI Charge?
A DWI charge is a criminal charge imposed on individuals driving or in control of a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. In most states, this includes driving with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08 percent or higher.
A DWI can either be a misdemeanor or felony charge, depending on the severity of the offense and whether there are prior DWI offenses. You’ll be charged with a felony if any of the following happens while you’re under the influence:
- You’ve been convicted of DWI before
- You caused an accident that resulted in serious bodily injury or death
- There were any minors under the age of 14 in the vehicle.
- You broke other laws like driving under a restricted, suspended, or revoked license
- You have an elevated high blood alcohol level
Irrespective of the charges, a DWI conviction is a serious offense – even for first-time offenders – that can have long-term consequences, including license suspension or revocation, fines, probation, and even jail time.
What are the Consequences of a DWI Charge?
A DWI conviction has both short- and long-term consequences. In the short term, you may face jail time, fines and fees, license suspension or revocation, probation, community service hours, and installing an ignition interlock device. In addition to these criminal penalties, a DWI conviction can also have long-term consequences, including higher insurance rates, difficulty finding or keeping a job, and the inability to rent a car or even travel abroad. One may also lose gun rights, professional licenses, immigration status, and child custody.
Tips to Improve Your Chances of Getting DWI Charges Dropped
Your chances of getting a DWI charge dropped will depend on your situation. But there are some steps you can take that may work to your advantage:
Your right to remain silent is critical in any criminal defense case. While the police, prosecutor, and judge have a job to do, it’s best to leave it up to your attorney to provide relevant evidence and answer any questions on your behalf.
Hire an Experienced Attorney
Hiring a criminal defense attorney who understands DWI law is essential to get the best possible outcome. An experienced lawyer will explore all the facts of your case, look for flaws in the prosecution’s evidence and aggressively fight for a favorable outcome. For example, they may look for reasons like:
- No probable cause
- Residual alcohol
- Faulty breath tests
- Medical conditions
- Police misconduct
Note Down Everything
Make sure to note down everything that happened when you were arrested, including the exact time and place of your arrest. It’s also helpful to record your experience with the police following the arrest and whether they forced you to do anything. If there are any witnesses present, make sure to get their contact information. You should also get a copy of the police report for inconsistencies and errors. Your lawyer may be able to use this information to challenge the prosecutor’s case or cast doubt on the evidence they present.
Provide Relevant Evidence
If you have any evidence that can be used to build your case, make sure to provide it to your attorney. This includes photos, witness statements, or video recordings. Having strong evidence in your favor can help reduce or dismiss the charges against you.
How Can I Get my DWI Charges Dropped?
Getting your DWI charges dropped is possible, but it depends on the circumstances of your case. Generally speaking, having a solid defense and convincing evidence in your favor will increase the chances of a prosecutor dropping or reducing your charge. In some cases, prosecutors may be willing to negotiate an agreement that involves pleading guilty to a lesser charge, such as reckless driving.
A lawyer will from Graystar Legal can evaluate your case and develop the most effective defense strategy to help you get the best possible outcome. They can also negotiate with prosecutors on your behalf for a plea bargain or even dismissal if there is sufficient evidence to support your case.
In addition, your lawyer may be able to challenge the accuracy and validity of evidence used against you, such as the results of blood or breath tests. If these tests were conducted improperly or violated your rights in any way, then they may be inadmissible in court, and your charges could be dropped.
Overall, it’s difficult to predict the odds of getting a DWI charge dropped in any given case, but having an experienced lawyer and strong evidence in your favor will greatly increase the chances of a favorable outcome. If you’ve been charged with a DWI, contact an experienced criminal defense attorney immediately to help you build the best possible defense.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where are the local courthouse information and departments?
Your local courthouse can provide information on its departments and court dates. You can find the address of your local courthouse online or call your county’s clerk of court office. Additionally, most court websites will provide information on their departments and their services.
What happens when you get a DWI for the first time?
For a first DWI offense, the penalties depend on several factors, such as the severity of the offense, your blood alcohol concentration at the time of your arrest, and any aggravating or mitigating factors. Generally, penalties may include fines, license suspension, community service, probation, and a possible jail sentence. Your lawyer will be able to provide more information on the potential consequences of a first-time DWI offense.
What are Aggravating or Mitigating Factors?
In criminal cases, aggravating factors can increase the severity of the punishment imposed. Examples of common aggravating factors include prior convictions, excessive speed, underage driving, and high blood alcohol levels. On the other hand, mitigating factors can reduce a sentence or eliminate it. Mitigating factors may include a lack of criminal record or evidence of remorse. An experienced lawyer can help you determine if any aggravating or mitigating factors apply to your case.