How Much Does Science Come Into Play In The Defense Of These Cases?
If you’re going to put on some kind of scientific defense and attack what they’re doing; a) that’s going to be expensive because the defendant’s going to have to pay for and hire an expert to challenge to review the reports and scientific methodology and ultimately testify in court.
The difficulty that you run into is that you can put on great scientific challenges to the breath test and those things are not as reliable scientifically as they are commonly believed to be, meaning the person’s size, weight, metabolism, all has an effect and those scientific findings do a rough average cookie-cutter analysis.
There is certainly some validity to those challenges, but the problem is that judges are not generally buying into it. Judges tend to look at these cases like, “Well, here is what the breath content was”, or, “Maybe we can be a little bit suspicious that it was a little higher or a little lower but it is what it is and it’s close enough.” Generally, it’s not worth the money to go down that road.
You can put on a spectacular case quicker, the smartest guy in the state but in the end, does it really convince the judge or a jury? Juries are probably more prone to buy into that, judges are not so much.
Why Will Someone Need An Experienced Attorney Who Knows And Understands These Types Of Cases Versus A Public Defender Or Self Representing?
Each one of those categories has their own problems. Representing yourself, is like going to a gunfight without a gun. You might get lucky, but the odds are very much against you. There is a lot of complicated law and while some of it’s available on the internet, a lot of it’s not.
While you can get on and reach statutes, you have to be able to know how to find and read the case law that’s on point and analyze it and how do you present and argue that into a judge? A layman’s not going to be able to do that.
Also, a layman’s not an officer of the court. If a lawyer is in the room and some law enforcement’s trying to say that the person said one thing, the attorney is an officer of the court, they have a duty of candor to the court; all the lawyer jokes aside, if the lawyer lies and is caught, they’ll lose their license.
Lawyers go to law school, they pass the bar, they spend a lot of years learning to do this. They are not going to put my law license in jeopardy to try to win a case for somebody. So, going on your own is a bad, bad, bad idea.
Secondly, talking about public defenders, there are some very good public defender attorneys. It’s like anything else, and there are some not so good ones. The problem for public defenders is they have a huge caseload, they make a salary; it’s a decent salary but they make a salary and they’re going to show up and they’re going to interview the defendant.
They don’t have a huge budget to use if there are things that need to be done that cost money, they’re going to give someone a due process defense, but they’re not going to push an envelope. They’re not going to stay up awake at night trying to figure something out and they’re not going to go out on the street and go to the crime scene, they’re not going to be out there taking pictures, they’re not going to be searching for that witness in another state. There are a lot of things that they just don’t have the time or resources to do what a private counsel can do.
The third issue is the law has become what they call “Specialized.” Attorneys aren’t licensed in different things. The individual areas of laws have become much more technical so you really need someone with experience in the area that your case falls into.
At first blush on their face, drunk driving cases don’t look that complicated. But when you take the time to do your homework and read the practitioner’s manuals and go to specific training on those things, there are a lot of issues where it’s just under the surface. That can make all the difference in the world and you get that when you have an experienced drunk driving or driving while under the influence of drugs attorney working on your case.
If you have more questions regarding Prescription Medication DUI cases, call the law office of Phillips, Worthington & Allen P.A. for a free initial consultation at (301) 892-6007 and get the information and legal answers you’re seeking.