Being arrested and charged with DUI can be a very serious situation for you and your family. That is why you should seriously consider hiring an attorney to represent you if you are accused of DUI. Your interests are at stake when you go up against the State in a DUI or criminal case. Your freedom may also be in jeopardy. This is an important time to seek help.
Tennessee DUI laws have strict penalties and carry minimum mandatory sentences. This could mean time in jail if you are convicted, loss of work or even loss of employment. It can also translate into negative implications later when you attempt to apply for a new job or even adversely affect child custody agreements in divorce cases.
DUI (driving under the influence) can result from either excessive consumption of alcoholic beverages, illicit drugs, prescription drugs or even an over the counter substance that alters one’s ability to safely operate a motor vehicle. This covers a pretty broad range of ways to find yourself under the influence and running afoul of the law in Tennessee. Depending on which method of intoxication you are accused of, will depend on the method of evidence collection the state will use to extract the proof from your body.
This brings us to the next point. If you are stopped and investigated for driving under the influence, law enforcement will typically administer three standardized field sobriety tests. Those include: (1) The horizontal gaze and nystagmus test; (2) The one-leg stand test; and (3) The walk and turn test. These tests are designed to determine if a driver is impaired to a degree that they can no longer safely operate a motor vehicle. The investigating officer will look for certain evidence of intoxication. The evidence may vary if the violator is suspected of alcohol intoxication vs. drug intoxication. An officer should be trained and certified to administer these tests. However, sometimes they are not properly trained or are not current in the their training. This is an issue that we will explore if I defend you in your DUI case. I will apply years of experience as a State Trooper and Traffic Homicide Investigator to your case. I was certified to perform each of these tests and did so daily for many years. I know when the investigation was properly conducted and when it was not.
If the officer believes after these field sobriety tests are conducted that you are under the influence, the next phase is normally an arrest. When arrested, you can expect to be taken to the nearest jail where you will be directed to take an approved chemical test for the purpose of extracting evidence from your body that will later be used against you. This is a very important phase of the DUI arrest process. It is important for the State and it is important for you. There are specific procedures that must be followed by law enforcement during this phase of the evidence collection process. If they deviate, the evidence may be tainted and cause elevated alcohol indications adversely affecting the test results. Likewise, if you are asked to submit to a blood test to determine the level of controlled substances present in your body, certain procedures must be followed by the evidence collection technician. Otherwise, the blood may become contaminated, the chain of custody could create reasonable doubt as to the validity of the evidence sample, or a host of other issues could occur. This is why you need a competent attorney by your side if you have been charged with DUI.
I have extensive experience investigating DUI cases and traffic collisions resulting from impaired drivers. I spent over a decade working as a State traffic homicide investigator and gained valuable inside knowledge of the “system” and how it works. I know when the proper procedures were followed by law enforcement. I also know when their case is weak. Let me use these skills and knowledge to represent you if you have been accused of DUI. This is an important time in your life. Don’t go it alone. Seek an attorney that you can trust with your future.
Harold E. Rushton, Esq. is a Nashville, Tennessee based criminal defense attorney serving Davidson, Williamson, Rutherford, Dickson and Wilson Counties. Call today for a FREE consultation (615)576-0071. Email: Harold@TheRushtonLawFirm.com