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Probable Cause & DUI Charges

By Hager & Schwartz, P.A.

December 5, 2019

For a DUI arrest to be legal, the police must establish probable cause beforehand. If the arrest lacked probable cause, then the criminal charge can and should be dismissed in court. Determining if the cops found probable caused is difficult because every case is different. If you are facing a DUI charge, then you should contact a Miami criminal defense attorney to review your options.

What Is Probable Cause?

In a DUI case, the police must identify facts to show that an arrest for driving under the influence is legal. If the police cannot identify facts to support the DUI arrest, or if they failed to conduct their investigation following the proper procedures, then the case may be dismissed.

Some facts that may support probable cause include:

  • Actual physical control of the vehicle;

  • A driving pattern suggesting impairment;

  • Poor performance on field sobriety tests;

  • The odor of alcohol;

  • Slurred speech;

  • Admission of guilt from the driver;

  • Presence of alcohol in the vehicle;

  • Breath test results.

How an Attorney Can Challenge Probable Cause

If you wish to contest a charge on the basis that law enforcement lacked probable cause, then your defense can file a motion and request a hearing with the court. At the hearing, the prosecution must use testimony and evidence to demonstrate the presence of probable cause.

Your defense will have an opportunity to cross-examine witnesses and rebut contentions that made. Your defense can also identify ways that the police failed to comply with proper procedures, which may invalidate some evidence.

Contact a Miami Criminal Defense Attorney

Because DUI charges are serious and could have significant consequences, you should contact an experienced criminal defense attorney for your crime. Our attorneys can review the evidence and provide an opinion as to whether the police established probable cause properly. Our firm can provide legal advice and representation to help you through your case.