In Wyoming, the laws are getting increasingly more strict with individuals stopped, arrested for, and convicted of drunk driving. If you have just been arrested for Driving Under the Influence (DUI)/Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) for the first time, you may feel uncertain about the resulting court proceedings. DUI/DWI law in Wyoming can be quite complex. The stakes are high, even as a first time offender, you may face hefty fines, probation, revocation of your license and a dramatic rise in your automobile insurance rates. You may even be sentenced to some jail time. Therefore, it is important to hire a defense attorney who has experience in this area of law.
Challenging Drunk Driving Charges
Even if you believe your situation provides the prosecutor with a “slam dunk” case against you, an experienced DUI/DWI attorney will be able to examine your case and make challenges, where appropriate. The critical elements of a DUI/DWI conviction are as follows: driving or operating a motor vehicle on a road or highway while having a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) level above the legal limit
A DUI/DWI conviction depends on a test of your BAC. Unfortunately, often times a person is not even the slightest bit aware of what his or her BAC is prior to stepping into a vehicle. In fact, you may have been completely unaware of your “guilty” condition prior to having your BAC tested. Nonetheless, “intent” to drive drunk is not required for a drunk driving conviction. Still, close cases provide the greatest basis for a successful defense.
Your BAC may be tested either through a Breathalyzer test, urine test or direct withdrawal of your blood. Although you may not have the right to dictate the terms of the blood-alcohol testing, you should be asked for permission prior to the administration of the test. Refusal to submit to testing, however, often results in revocation of your license. These tests, especially the Breathalyzer test, may be improperly influenced by a variety of factors including: prescription drugs and medical conditions, certain dental work, the use of chewing tobacco, and even burping in the middle of testing. Because the percentage of your blood that consisted of alcohol at the time of testing is critical to the case against you, an experienced DUI/DWI attorney will examine whether any of the circumstances of your testing can be challenged.
An experienced attorney will also examine whether it can be argued that you were not “driving” the vehicle prior to your arrest. Some states use the word “driving” in their statutes while Wyoming uses the word “operating.” While the definition of what is found to constitute “operating” a motor vehicle, in the appropriate situations, this element of the charge against you may be challenged.
DUI/DWI charges are much more than a mere traffic violation and should be taken seriously. It is essential that you choose an attorney to represent you, who has experience with DUI/DWI law in your particular state. You should ask potential attorneys about their background in this area of the law and about their outcomes in representing clients charged with drunk driving. Be curious, ask lots of questions and make an informed decision. Challenging drunk driving charges is never easy, but an experienced attorney will recognize and address the weaknesses in the case against you.