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Probable Cause Questioned in DWI Case


The defendant was charged with violation of traffic laws because he was driving while under the influence of alcohol. The court conducted a hearing to determine if the defendant’s three separate statements have any legal implication.

In this DWI case, there are three different statements being deliberated. In the first statement of the defendant, she had said that she had a fight with a male friend since she was too intoxicated to driver her vehicle. The statement also indicated that she had 2 drinks. The second statement was allegedly given by the defendant after she was arrested by the police. In that second statement, she claimed that she only took one drink at her friend’s house and was heading to another destination. The third statement said that the defendant had three drinks and was about to go to her friend’s house.

A New York Criminal Lawyer said that the three statements are obviously in conflict with one another. The only witness to this case was the police officer who arrested the defendant. According to the officer’s statement, he and his partner were patrolling their usual route. The officers received a radio call and proceeded to respond to a dispute between drivers on the road. They went to the location of the dispute. When the police officers had arrived at the scene, the lead officer noticed the three people who seemed to be arguing. The woman, who was also the driver of the vehicle, was identified as the defendant.

The police officer was informed by one of the men who was with the woman defendant had been driving along when he noticed the woman and her friend having an argument. The man stopped his car to break it up.

After hearing the man, the police officer proceeded to ask the defendant what happened. The defendant told the police officer that they were arguing because she was too intoxicated to drive the car. When the officer had asked the defendant where she came from, the defendant had replied that she had been drinking. While the defendant was talking, the police officer noticed that she was slurring her speech and had bloodshot eyes. These were considered signs of intoxication. The officer also noted an alcoholic smell coming from the defendant.

After detecting the smell of alcohol, the officer had the defendant take the sobriety tests to determine if she was really intoxicated. The breath test results showed that she was intoxicated. The officer did not make her walk in a straight line since the defendant was wearing very high heels.

The officer arrested the defendant and brought her to the precinct for further questioning. An NY Criminal Lawyer said that while the police officer had the defendant at the back of the car, he proceeded to read the Miranda warnings in her presence. During the entire ride to the precinct, the police officer noted that the defendant had made a different version of her statement. At the precinct, the police officer also heard the defendant make another statement that was different from the previous ones.

Based on the provisions of the law, the police officer had probable cause in arresting the defendant. The officer had suspected the defendant to be driving while intoxicated. The court has found that the officer acted in the proper manner when he approached the defendant’s car and inquired on the incident. Before the defendant’s arrest, the court also finds that the questions asked by the police officer were only investigatory in nature. It can be recalled that the officer first asked about the reason of the dispute. Regarding the statements made by the defendant prior to her arrest, the court has found that those statements were made by the defendant out of her own free will. Therefore, such statements are admissible in court. However, there was no direct evidence that the defendant had been driving while she was intoxicated since the officers found her car parked along the side of the road. The motion of the defendant to suppress the statements is granted.

DWI lawsuits are not as simple as you think. If you are charged with DWI, sex crimes or a theft crime a qualified lawyer is all you need as you prepare your defense. Contact Stephen Bilkis & Associates for advice and a free consultation.

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