Those who are charged with drunk driving in Minnesota are allowed to dispute the charge with the assistance of legal counsel. Attorneys may use copies of police reports, videos taken at the scene and other information to help them create defenses for their clients. For instance, a legal representative may assert that a defendant didn’t have physical control of his or her vehicle before being taken into custody.
Instead, the evidence may show that a person was sleeping in a vehicle or stopping to change a flat tire when he or she was approached by an officer. A defense attorney might also claim that there was no basis for the traffic stop that caused a person to be taken into custody. Generally speaking, an officer must observe a moving violation or receive specific information about a vehicle being operated in an unsafe manner before conducting a stop.
If a police officer interferes with a person’s ability to seek legal counsel, it may lead to a case being dismissed. Officers must tell individuals who are being taken into custody that they have the right to an attorney. An officer must also provide a phone or phone book to a person seeking to contact a lawyer. It also may be necessary to allow a driver to call friends or family members to ask for assistance with obtaining legal counsel.
Individuals who are charged with DUI may be ordered to spend time in jail or prison, pay a fine or put an ignition interlock device in their vehicles. A lawyer may cast doubt upon the evidence used to charge an individual before or at trial. This may result in a DUI charge being dropped or a defendant obtaining a favorable plea deal.