Yes. The State of Arkansas has the burden of proving beyond a reasonable doubt that the driver was intoxicated and 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 blood, breath or urine tests. 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.
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