Title: How to Get Out of a DUI in Nebraska: A Comprehensive Guide
Driving under the influence (DUI) charges can have severe consequences in Nebraska, including hefty fines, license suspension, and even jail time. However, it is important to remember that everyone is innocent until proven guilty, and there are legal avenues available to fight a DUI charge. This article aims to provide a comprehensive guide on how to get out of a DUI in Nebraska, outlining potential defenses, legal procedures, and frequently asked questions.
I. Understanding DUI Laws in Nebraska:
Before delving into the strategies to fight a DUI charge, it is crucial to familiarize oneself with Nebraska’s DUI laws. In the state, it is illegal to operate a vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08% or higher. However, for commercial drivers, the threshold is lowered to 0.04%, while drivers under the age of 21 face a zero-tolerance policy with a BAC limit of 0.02%.
II. Possible Defenses:
1. Challenging the traffic stop: To obtain a DUI conviction, law enforcement must have a valid reason to stop a vehicle. If the officer lacked probable cause or reasonable suspicion, it can be argued that the traffic stop was unlawful, potentially leading to the dismissal of the charges.
2. Contesting field sobriety tests: Field sobriety tests, such as the walk-and-turn or one-leg stand, are subjective assessments prone to human error. Challenging the accuracy and reliability of these tests can weaken the prosecution’s case against you.
3. Questioning breathalyzer accuracy: Breathalyzer machines require proper calibration and maintenance to provide accurate results. Contesting the reliability of the breathalyzer used during your arrest can be an effective defense strategy.
4. Exploring medical conditions and medications: Certain medical conditions and prescribed medications can mimic the effects of intoxication. If you have a documented medical condition or were taking medication at the time of the arrest, it can be argued that these factors influenced the DUI tests’ results.
III. Legal Procedures:
1. Hire an experienced DUI attorney: Consulting with a skilled DUI attorney is crucial to understanding the complexities of Nebraska’s DUI laws and building a strong defense. An attorney will guide you through the legal process, protect your rights, and work towards the best possible outcome.
2. Administrative License Revocation (ALR) hearing: In Nebraska, failing or refusing a breathalyzer test triggers an automatic suspension of your driver’s license. However, you have the right to request an ALR hearing within ten days of the arrest to contest the suspension and potentially retain your driving privileges.
3. Pre-trial negotiations: Your attorney may negotiate with the prosecutor to reduce the charges or reach a plea bargain. This can involve a lesser charge, reduced penalties, or enrollment in alcohol treatment programs.
4. Trial: If a favorable resolution cannot be reached through negotiations, your case may proceed to trial. During the trial, your attorney will present evidence, cross-examine witnesses, and challenge the prosecution’s case to prove your innocence.
Q1. What happens if I refuse a breathalyzer test in Nebraska?
A1. Refusing a breathalyzer test in Nebraska triggers an automatic suspension of your driver’s license, typically for one year. However, you have the right to request an ALR hearing within ten days to contest the suspension.
Q2. Can I represent myself in a DUI case?
A2. While it is legally possible to represent yourself, it is highly advised to seek the expertise of a DUI attorney. They possess the knowledge, experience, and understanding of the legal system necessary to navigate the complexities of a DUI case effectively.
Q3. How long does a DUI stay on my record in Nebraska?
A3. A DUI conviction in Nebraska remains on your driving record for 12 years. However, it is important to note that certain employment and educational opportunities may require disclosure of prior convictions beyond this period.
Facing a DUI charge in Nebraska can be a daunting experience, but it is essential to remember that there are legal strategies available to fight the charges. By understanding Nebraska’s DUI laws, exploring potential defenses, and seeking professional legal guidance, individuals can increase their chances of getting out of a DUI charge. Remember, acting promptly, hiring an experienced attorney, and building a strong defense are crucial steps in protecting your rights and achieving a favorable outcome.