Why People Choose Boulahanis & Associates
In a personal and professional manner we will explain exactly what you can expect during every phase of your case. We will leave no stone unturned to win your case. We are extremely aggressive and have a reputation for winning cases. Put more than twenty five years of trial experience to work for you, by choose the firm that lawyers refer their clients, family and friends to. Thousands of satisfied clients can't be wrong and you can read some of the testimonials of those we have served in the past by visiting our testimonials page.
A DUI come with severe penalties that can set you back or even affect you long term. After defending countless individuals in these situations, we recognized what is involved in these cases. In addition to offering powerful representation that always strives for the best outcome in any case, we also have a wealth of knowledge in these matters that can allow us to keep you educated and informed throughout the process. Having a more comprehensive idea of the situation you are in can often provide a great sense of ease.
Investigating the Case
Many individuals that are charged with driving under the influence of alcohol do not realize that they have the opportunity to defend themselves. This move can frequently prove successful. Defense needs to be aggressive and thorough to increase every chance of having the penalties reduced or dropped. Since these cases may involve pieces of evidence, such as the findings of any tests done, it is important to have all of this information given. We make our investigation as in depth as we can, and this may involve reviewing factors such as the device used for a breath test, assessing if an arresting officer was trained enough and other factors that can chip away at the charges. An FOIA request and exhaustive discovery demand can give us access to information such as the official arrest report, the details of a breath test or even videos from the patrol officer's car. An interview will also be made with you, to learn any details that we need to be prepared for or that we can use when building a compelling case to protect you.
Field Sobriety Tests
With a typical drunk driving case the police officer's investigation will begin with the observation of the driving, and will continue until you are arrested. (Usually this occurs when you are handcuffed and placed into the patrol vehicle). This investigation will include several parts or "phases", and will most often conclude with a series of field sobriety tests: Walk and Turn, One Leg Stand, and HGN. These tests will take into account the capabilities of the suspect and if they seem impaired, along with their ability to follow through with the instructions being given by the officer. They can help an officer observe the balance and other abilities that can be altered by alcohol. These tests are not full proof and can also give an inaccurate picture though, making an innocent person look guilty.
One of the most common tools that is used by an officer questioning a suspect about driving they believe to have been drinking and driving, is a chemical test. When simple observation is not enough, a chemical test can assess what is going on internally and if there appears to be elevated levels of alcohol within the body. This can also give an estimate of how high these levels are, to better determine if the driver has too much in their system to be driving. A breath test, blood test or urine test can be used. A blood test is considered to be more accurate but is difficult to administer, which is why a breath test is often used. A breath test can also give a more immediate answer, unlike some tests which will need to go to the lab for an evaluation. This assesses the level of alcohol on exhaled air. In the state of Michigan, a DataMaster is the breath test that is typically used. It takes a sample of the suspect's breath and uses infrared spectrometry to estimate the level of alcohol. The device converts the breath alcohol level to a blood alcohol level mathematically based on the average person and should not be considered completely accurate.
Physiology of Alcohol
Made up of a hydroxyl functional group that is bonded to a carbon atom, alcohol is an organic compound that can affect the body in different ways. Ethyl is the form of alcohol that is typically consumed today and by recognizing how the body metabolizes ethyl, certain assumptions can be made. The Widemark Formula is based off this principle, that by knowing the weight and gender of a person, the type and amount of alcohol they had, how much food they had in their system during consumption and the period of time over which the alcohol was consumed, an estimate can be made through a mathematical formula about the level of alcohol within their blood stream. This test is often highly considered by a judge during a case for drunk driving, but there are faults which can make the findings of it inaccurate. On top of the test not being 100 percent error proof, there is the chance that an officer administered a test wrong. There are different defenses which may be used in regards to DUI charges, and our team is highly knowledgeable and experienced in these matters.