In their initial interview, most of our clients state that “they know what they did is wrong, and they just want to avoid jail and get their license back as quick as possible…” but they go on to state “I know there is really nothing that can be done for me, no one can beat these cases.”
There are many different reasons that people have this belief, and it is unfortunate. It leads to many people going into court at their first appearance and pleading no-contest or guilty to a case they might have been able to beat, or at least received a reduced charge. As a former prosecutor, I can tell you that you need to make sure that you hire the right attorney to defend you from your DUI charges.
A DUI, even a first offense, carries with it mandatory jail time. This can be a completely horrifying prospect. On top of that, there are mandatory license suspensions of 6 months to 3 years, again on just a first offense. Many people and many attorneys do not even realize that there are two different types of license suspensions involved in a typical DUI. There is the license suspension you receive from the cop when you test over the legal limit or refuse the breath test, and then there is a whole new suspension for when you are convicted.
Even Basic DUI Defense Strategies Pay Off for Our Clients
While we at Patituce & Associates do not consider our defense strategies basic by any stretch of the imagination, even the most basic strategies can help our clients receive the results they deserve.
For instance, at a minimum, in every case, we obtain the following (and completely review it):
- The police report relating to your DUI arrest
- The field sobriety testing results relating to your DUI arrest
- The dash camera video tape, if it exists
- The complete logs relating to the breath test you took, if you took one
- The complete logs for any other type of blood or urine test you took
The above are just the basics on how defense strategies pay off for our clients. In our opinion, the two most important pieces of DUI defense are the video from the dash camera and the logs relating to the breath test.
Here’s why:police officers often overstate, even accidentally, your performance on the test.
It happens all the time. We will review a police report and say “Wow! Sounds like you were intoxicated.” The police report will say things like “slurred, slow speech, poor balance, etc.” but when we go to the video, we see our client speaking normally, not losing their balance, and performing the test well. We like to argue in court, and have done so successfully, that a police officer might lie but video does not. That’s why video is important.
Read our blog post about 5 DUI Arrest Mistakes Police Make!
Cleveland OVI Attorneys Must Examine the Breath Test Machine
We are shocked that there are attorneys out there who do not actually go to the police station and review the logs that relate to their client. Recently, we sat in court and watched a lawyer who was a police officer fordecades plea their client to a first offense DUI at the arraignment. This attorney did not go to the police station and did not review the records. What was outrageous was that we had a case out of the same police station and knew, because we had examined the records, that the machine was defective. The result? Our client agreed to take a reckless operation and received a $50 fine plus court costs. They got their license back that day. The other attorney’s client? They received 3 days in jail and 3 days at a driving class. Not the best result.