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How to Fight a Drunk Driving Charge in Missouri

The Summary Law Firm Feb. 1, 2022

In Missouri, motorists are prohibited from driving while intoxicated (DWI). A defendant arrested and charged with DWI could be facing devastating penalties, including massive fines, prison time, license suspension or revocation, and other life-altering ramifications.

Fortunately, fighting your drunk driving allegations can help you avoid the potential punishments and consequences. A skilled Missouri criminal defense attorney can help protect your rights and determine the best way to fight your DWI charges.

At The Summary Law Firm, I have the skills, expertise, and resources to defend and represent individuals in their DWI cases. As your attorney, I can investigate all of the facts of your case and outline an effective defense to fight your drunk driving allegations. Using my extensive knowledge, I can fight aggressively to defend your rights, refute the charges against you with substantial evidence, and help keep your driving record clean.

The Summary Law Firm is proud to serve clients across St. Louis, Missouri, and throughout St. Charles, St. Louis County as well as St. Clair County and Madison County, Illinois.

Possible Penalties for a DWI in Missouri

Under Missouri law, a person may be arrested and charged with DWI for:

  • Driving with a blood alcohol content (BAC) level of 0.08% or more

  • Operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or controlled substances

Unfortunately, a DWI charge in Missouri can result in both criminal and administrative charges. If convicted, the possible penalties and consequences include:

  • Huge fines

  • Jail time (ranging from days in the county jail to years in prison)

  • A criminal record/history

  • Increased difficulty in securing employment, housing, or public benefits

  • Driver's license suspension or revocation

  • Loss of your rights to own firearms

  • Ineligibility to obtain certain financial loans

  • Increased auto insurance premiums

  • Deterioration of professional relationships

  • Loss of scholarships or university acceptance

If you or someone you know has recently been arrested and charged with drunk driving, it is very important for you to get in touch with a highly-skilled DWI defense lawyer right away. Your attorney can strategize an effective defense to help you avoid the severe implications of a criminal conviction.

Defense Strategies

When facing impaired driving allegations in Missouri, your attorney may be able to help fight your charges by using any of the following defenses:

  • Improper or unlawful stop (the officer lacked probable cause to stop the driver)

  • Field sobriety test was improperly administered

  • Chemical tests produced inaccurate results

  • Breathalyzer or breath test device was improperly calibrated

  • Blood test was tampered with or mishandled in the chain of custody

  • Failure to allow access to an attorney (if requested)

  • No evidence of the defendant being in actual physical control of the vehicle

  • Medical conditions caused BAC level to rise

  • Improper interrogation or Miranda Rights violations

  • Violations of the rules of evidence and procedure

The surrounding circumstances of your case will determine the possible defenses. An experienced criminal defense attorney can investigate whether there was improper testing of blood alcohol samples and determine the best defenses to fight your DWI charges.

Tests

On suspicion of driving while intoxicated or under the influence of drugs or alcohol, a police officer may pull you over and request that you submit to a field sobriety test or chemical test.

Field Sobriety Test

Field sobriety tests are a group of three tests – the walk-and-turn, the horizontal gaze nystagmus, and the one-leg stand test – used by law enforcement officers to determine whether a driver is intoxicated. Field sobriety tests are not as accurate as blood alcohol tests. In Missouri, a person is not required to perform field sobriety tests, and there are no penalties for refusal.

Chemical Test

Under Missouri's "implied consent" law, all motorists must submit to chemical tests upon reasonable request by police. A chemical test might involve a blood, breath, saliva, or urine test. Any driver who refuses chemical testing after a DWI arrest will face one-year license revocation.

An experienced attorney can enlighten you about your rights and responsibilities around DWI tests and craft an effective defense strategy to help fight your drunk driving allegations.

How Experienced Legal Guidance Can Help

In order to avoid the devastating criminal penalties and consequences of a DWI conviction, it is often advisable to fight your allegations. However, trying to defend your drunk driving charges without experienced guidance or representation could expose you to the possibility of getting convicted and suffering the maximum penalties. When facing impaired driving charges, you need to retain a highly-skilled and aggressive criminal defense attorney to protect your best interests and help build your defense.

At The Summary Law Firm, I'm dedicated to offering comprehensive legal guidance and reliable representation to clients facing drunk driving charges. Using my in-depth knowledge of Missouri DWI laws, I can help you navigate the state's criminal justice system and make sure you are given fair treatment in every stage of the legal proceedings. Also, I will review the arresting officer's conduct and different tests performed to identify possible issues. I will fight vigorously on your side to protect your driving privileges, attempt to establish your innocence, or negotiate a reduced punishment with the prosecutor.

Don't gamble with your driving privileges and future. Contact my firm – The Summary Law Firm – today to schedule a simple case assessment with a skilled DWI defense attorney. I can offer you the detailed legal counsel, advocacy, and strong representation you need to fight your drunk driving charges and increase your chances of a better tomorrow. My firm proudly represents clients in St. Louis, Missouri, and throughout St. Charles, St. Louis County, as well as St. Clair County and Madison County, Illinois.