Have you been arrested for DWI – DRIVING WHILE INTOXICATED?
It is against the laws of the State of Arkansas for a person to drive or to be in actual physical control of a vehicle while intoxicated. A person is presumed to be intoxicated if he has a blood alcohol concentration in his breath, blood or urine of eight-hundredths (0.08) or more.
It is against the law for an individual to drink and drive in the state of Arkansas. But, just because a person is stopped by law enforcement personnel and arrested for driving under the influence that does not mean that person is guilty under /Arkansas Law.
Criminal and drunk driving convictions in Arkansas carry severe penalties.
If you have been arrested for a DWI, remember under Arkansas Law, you are innocent until proven guilty. You have to be convicted by the court to incur these penalties.
Just because you have been arrested does not mean you are automatically guilty. You have rights, but you must stand up for them. A DWI conviction can be devastating to you financially and personally.
Certain tests, steps and procedures must be followed and performed by the arresting officer when arresting a person for DWI to determine whether the individual is driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
If the arresting officer is not properly trained in how to perform these tests and procedures, it may result in a person being wrongfully arrested for DWI.
It is possible to successfully defend a “driving while intoxicated” charge. The State of Arkansas has the burden of proving beyond a reasonable doubt that the driver was intoxicated and was operating or in actual physical control of the vehicle at the time immediately prior to time of the investigation.
The U. S. Department of Transportation, through the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, has compiled numerous “clues” which provide the investigating police officer with evidence on the question of intoxication. A well trained officer begins to collect those clues at the moment that he or she first observes you and/or the vehicle. The number of clues collected or observed will be presented to the trial court as a basis for a conviction.
Many police officers in this state are well trained and thus know how to identify, observe and report those clues. Others are not so well trained.
Successful trial lawyers will know those clues well. No attempt will be made herein to express those clues. A good trial lawyer will make an independent investigation to discover all of the information which the police officer had at the time of the arrest in order to make an independent determination whether the facts will support a conviction.
It is more difficult for the prosecuting attorney to obtain a conviction in those situations where the driver refuses to aid and assist in the gathering of those clues. Successful defenses often arise in those situations where the driver refuses to take field sobriety tests and/or refuses to submit to testing for blood alcohol content.
All too often, a driver who has had a “few” drinks will try to talk himself or herself out of the ticket. Such effort usually has the opposite effect of proving the investigating officer with evidence needed to support a conviction.
A person who is found guilty of driving while intoxicated will be subject to a fine, sentenced to a jail term or incarceration within the county jail wherein the conviction was rendered, and suffer additional penalties. The convicted driver will also suffer a suspension of driver’s license. Any person who is found guilty of driving while intoxicated by any district court has the automatic right to appeal the decision to a circuit court.
If you have been arrested on a driving under the influence charge take steps to protect your rights.
For a FREE case evaluation, call Garry MC Donald at the McDonald Law Firm. 870 862-1498
Offices Located in Simmons First Bank Plaza
100 West Grove Suite 308 El Dorado AR
PHONE (870) 862-1498 FAX (870) 862-4071