Legal Question in DUI Law in Minnesota

my son is 20 received a 4th degree DWI blew .13. No prior tickets or offenses.

Recieved the ticket due to calling in his own accident hit a sign but didnt want to leave the sceen of a crime. What is the likely hood to receive a reduced sentence and not have it affect his record

Asked on 1/18/15, 7:57 am

3 Answers from Attorneys

Tricia Dwyer Tricia Dwyer Esq & Assoc PLLC

I suggest your son secure an experienced attorney at this time so she may study his case facts and assist him to the best possible outcome. Each case is unique to its own facts. Tricia Dwyer Esq.

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Answered on 1/18/15, 8:25 am
Samuel Edmunds Sieben Edmunds Miller PLLC

It's very difficult to keep a charge like this off of a person's record - next to impossible without attorney assistance. Your son will have the criminal case to deal with and the license revocation. The license revocation is equally important to challenge because just the revocation is considered a prior alcohol offense on one's record in Minnesota. I recommend retaining an experienced DWI attorney to handle these matters for your son.

(651) 994-6744

[email protected]

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Answered on 1/18/15, 9:30 am
Maury Beaulier612.240.8005 Minnesota Lawyers

Thank you for contacting us. It is very important tat your son have counsel.

I would like to provide you some background on the DWI offense you received.

The Criminal Case of DWI

A first offense DWI i still a serious offense. At a minimum, it is a fourth degree offense. A fourth degree offense is a misdemeanor which carries with it maximum possible penalties of 90 days in jail and a $1 ,000 fine. As a result, it is important to present an aggressive defense. It is also important to know and understand the Judge's and their proclivities in your county.

License Revocation or Cancellation - The Implied Consent

A DWI is not only a criminal case, it has a civil element as well. There is a license revocation related to a DWI that is a case entirely separate from the criminal matter. Nothing in the criminal matter will change the license revocation which occurs automatically unless you seek a judicial review of that revocation. This MUST occur within 30 days after you were ticketed. Any failure to seek a judicial review results in the license revocation and a record that indicates a new alcohol related offense that can be used to make any subsequent DWI a greater crime. In that judicial review, the challenges are the same as those made in the criminal case. The revocation periods and procedures for reinstatement have become much more difficult in the last decade. A first offense within 10 years and a blood alcohol concentration below .16 has a revocation period of 30 to 90 days .

Strong Defenses on a DWI Case

There are many challenges to a DWI. The defenses depend on the particular set of facts in each case. That means a detailed review of all evidence, including police reports, police videos, audio recordings and testing records related to blood alcohol levels is imperative. Often, hidden defenses are found through a thorough review of all evidence. Currently, there are strong challenges to many DWI offenses related to the U.S. Supreme Court case of Missouri v. McNeely recently decided. It calls into question the right of law enforcement to seek a blood, breath or urine test without a warrant or without some valid exception to the warrant requirement. this is the strongest challenge to DWI offense s in over 20 years.

Additionally, as part of any DWI arrest, the Officers must follow very specific steps as part of the arrest. If any one step is missing, the case may be dismissed.

Other points of a defense analysis include:

Reasonable Suspicion. The officer must have reasonable suspicion to believe a specific crime has been committed in order to stop a person. If that reasonable suspicion is lacking the stop and the ticket may be invalid;

Probable Cause to arrest and charge. The officer must make sufficient observations to form a basis for probable cause to believe that you were operating a vehicle while intoxicated. Oftentimes, officers perform field sobriety tests incorrectly making the arrest invalid;

Procedures at the Station. The officer must follow very specific procedures at the station including reading and recording an Implied Consent Advisory that informs you that you have a right to a lawyer. If any of the steps are omitted, the charges may be dismissed;

Test Procedures. Testing methods to determine blood alcohol concentrations are imperfect at best. Like any scientific method, any test result has a margin of error. If the machinery is not properly maintained and even if it is properly maintained, the test results may vary from true Blood Alcohol Concentration. A sufficient variation may result in a reduce charge or no charge.

I have over 22 years of experience handling DWI and DUI cases throughout Minnesota.

If you have any questions, call me at 612.240.8005.

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Answered on 1/19/15, 8:15 am

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