Protecting the Legal Rights of Drivers who Have Been Accused of Drunk Driving in the St. Louis Metropolitan Area and throughout Missouri and Illinois
If you have been accused of drunk driving, you are probably stressed, confused, and uncertain about what to do next. These feelings are understandable, as drunk driving is a serious crime in both Missouri and Illinois and both states have laws authorizing extremely serious penalties even for first-time offenders. Fortunately, there are many ways that a lawyer can help you avoid or mitigate the consequences you are facing.
A Drunk Driving Conviction Can Result in Serious Legal and Collateral Consequences
Over the past few decades, the penalties associated with drunk driving have become significantly more severe. If you are convicted of drunk driving, some of the consequences you could be facing include the following:
- Significant fines
- Drug and alcohol counseling
- Community service
- Participation in a victim’s impact panel
- Jail time
In addition to these court-imposed penalties, a drunk driving conviction becomes part of your permanent record. This means that potential employers, landlords, or individuals making a decision about your acceptance into an academic program may be made aware of the fact that you have been convicted of drunk driving. In this way, a DUI can result in long-term consequences that can significantly affect your life, both professionally and personally.
How a DWI Lawyer Can Help
It is important to keep in mind that there is a difference between a DUI arrest and a conviction. The state still must prove every element of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt, which is the highest burden of proof in our legal system. There are often defenses that can be raised in a DUI case, even if you “blew” over the legal limit. Some these include the following:
- Establishing that you have a medical condition that can result in inaccurate breathalyzer results
- Introducing evidence that indicates that the breathalyzer that was used in your case was improperly calibrated
- Challenging the legal justification for the initial traffic stop
- Arguing that the officer that performed sobriety testing on you lack sufficient experience or training to determine whether you were under the influence
While it is certainly possible in many cases to directly attack the prosecution’s case, most DUI cases are resolved by reaching a plea agreement with the prosecutor handling your case. In many instances, a skilled lawyer can negotiate a plea agreement that avoids the most serious penalties available or even results in the dismissal of the case once the terms of probation are completed, which would avoid a conviction from being entered on your record.
Contact Kilo Flynn Today to Speak with One of Our St. Louis DWI Attorneys
If you have been arrested for drunk driving, it is important to talk to an attorney as soon as possible. Importantly, if you refused a breath test, you may only have a matter of days to challenge the automatic suspension of your license, so it is important to retain legal counsel immediately.
We have represented people accused of DUI/DWI in the Missouri counties of St. Louis, St. Charles, Lincoln, Jefferson, Franklin and Crawford, and the Illinois counties of Madison, St. Clair and Monroe.
To schedule a consultation with an experienced St. Louis DUI lawyer, call Kilo Flynn today at 314-647-8910 or contact us online