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DUI Defense Strategies: Reasonable Suspicion for Traffic Stop

Posted on in DUI Defense

IL DUI lawyer“I got a ticket for DUI last night. Is there any way to get out of this?

“If I lose my driver’s license, I could lose my job. I have to be able to drive.”

“I admitted I had been drinking and I blew .08 on the breathalyzer. Is there anything you can do to help me?”

DUI defense attorneys are used to getting calls like this. So do not be afraid to call for help. There are many ways an attorney can help you with your DUI case, even if your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) tested over the legal limit of .08 percent.

Blowing .08 or Over Is Not a Guaranteed Conviction

Before you can be convicted, the prosecutor has to prove that the police officer who arrested you did everything correctly, according to the law, and that you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

You might think that blowing .08 or higher on a breathalyzer machine is enough to convict you. You would be wrong. There are, in fact, hundreds of pages of Illinois court decisions addressing the various legal technicalities that can cause a breathalyzer test result to be thrown out and the charges dismissed entirely.

An experienced DUI defense attorney knows many legal strategies that can result in DUI charges being dismissed or reduced. One issue that is often raised as part of a DUI defense is reasonable suspicion.

Reasonable Suspicion for a Traffic Stop

The police cannot just stop and question drivers whenever they like. In order to conduct an investigatory traffic stop, an officer must be able to articulate a “reasonable suspicion” that a violation of the law has been committed. (According to a 2012 ruling by the Illinois Supreme Court, the requirement for a traffic stop is “reasonable suspicion,” not the more exacting “probable cause.”)

For example, if an officer observes a driver commit the traffic violation of “improper lane usage,” that meets the standard of reasonable suspicion for a traffic stop. The officer may then question the driver about that behavior and may subsequently develop suspicion that the driver is also guilty of DUI.

However, if the officer cannot meet the standard of reasonable suspicion, the traffic stop can be ruled unreasonable and the DUI charge could be thrown out.

DuPage County DUI Defense Attorney

If you were arrested in DuPage County, choose an experienced Oak Brook DUI defense lawyer who works with the county prosecutors and judges on a daily basis and knows how they are likely to react to a particular defense strategy. Call McMahon Law Offices at 630-953-4400 for a free consultation. We are available for weekend and evening appointments.

 

SOURCES:

http://www.illinoiscourts.gov/Opinions/SupremeCourt/2012/111781.pdf

https://www2.illinois.gov/osad/Publications/DigestbyChapter/CH%2044%20Search%20_%20Seizure.pdf

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