Defending Against DWI Charges
Here in the St. Louis area, you do not have to travel far most weekend nights to see drunk driving checkpoints and arrests. Here and throughout Missouri, police are cracking down on driving while intoxicated (DWI), and the punishments for a conviction continue to get more harsh.
If you are stopped by law enforcement for suspicion of DWI, the police will ask you to take a chemical test of your breath or blood. Once the officer requests the test, you have the right to consult with an attorney and the officer must give you 20 minutes to do so. Before you answer any questions or take any sobriety tests, call an experienced criminal defense attorney like me, Gregory Smith, who can protect your legal rights and help you seek a positive resolution.
The Stakes Are High For A DWI Arrest. Get The Help You Need.
Here in Missouri, a first-time DWI conviction could lead to up to six months in jail, a $500 fine and a 30-day license suspension, followed by 60 days of restricted driving privileges. If you are a repeat offender, however, you can face felony DWI charges, which carry mandatory minimum sentences, depending on how many prior DWIs you have on your driving record.
You should know that Missouri has an “implied consent” law. If you are lawfully arrested by law enforcement with probable cause to believe that you have been operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated, you consent to a chemical test of your breath, blood or urine for the purpose of determining your blood alcohol content. Should you refuse a test, you will lose your license for a year. When you call a lawyer like me, I can provide you advice on how to proceed.
For any charges, including DWI manslaughter, aggravated DWI, persistent DWI or chronic DWI, it will be necessary to work with an attorney who has the right skills and knowledge. I have completed the DWI Detection and Standardized Field Sobriety Testing course recognized by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. This is the same training that police officers receive, giving me unique insight into the process and how to challenge law enforcement’s ability to administer field sobriety tests.