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What are My Fourth Amendment Rights in a Southern Chicago DUI Stop?

There are many drivers in the Chicago region who get arrested for DUI and simply accept their fate and throw themselves on the mercy of the court in an effort to put this episode behind them. Years of costly fines and months without the ability to operate a motor vehicle are only some of the penalties these drivers will be subjected to.

There are many people in the southern Chicago area who have discovered that their fourth amendment rights were violated during the DUI stop and the entire case was dismissed. Here is why you want to be in contact with a Chicago DUI attorney who can show the court your rights were violated and the prosecution case must be dismissed.

Analyzing the Police Report
The reason the officer pulled your vehicle over to perform a DUI check was because they observed driving patterns that are indicative that the driver could be intoxicated. The police dash camera will reveal what caused the officer to come to that conclusion. Perhaps the officer observed that the car was swerving back and forth between the lane markers. Maybe the officer observed the vehicle traveling several miles under the posted limit. There could have been an instance where the officer saw the driver ignoring traffic signals. Although these are not clear indications the driver was drunk, it may give them reasonable cause to conduct a more thorough investigation.

Your Chicago DUI attorney clearly understands the law and knows that according to your fourth amendment rights, you are protected against unreasonable search or seizure by the police. Your attorney will try to show the officer did not have reasonable cause to begin this investigation by carefully analyzing all the audio and video from the police dash cam.

Investigating the Audio & Video DVD
One the officer had the vehicle pulled to the side of the road, they have a discussion with the driver to see if their suspicions are confirmed. During this brief question and answer session, the officer is trying to see if there are any signs that the driver is impaired and should not be operating the vehicle. The officer will ask the driver to step out the car and to perform one or more field sobriety tests in front of the dash camera. Depending on the driver and the officer, there are a number of field tests that can be administered. The officer can ask the driver to submit to a breath test, to walk a straight line, recite the alphabet, or to stand motionless with one leg in the air.

Your DUI attorney again will analyze that DVD of the traffic stop to see if the officer still had articulable suspicion that the driver broke the law. Your attorney can present evidence to the court that the officer did not ask about a medical condition or reaction to certain medication, and in a rush to judgement, asked the driver to perform tests that are challenging even for a sober individual in the middle of the night.

Subpoena the Arresting Officer
The DUI attorney can not interrogate the arresting officer in between the arrest and the criminal court date. Your attorney does understand however that the driver is entitled to a DMV hearing, but must request that hearing within ten days of the arrest. Before the hearing, the attorney can request the officer be subpoenaed and answer questions at the hearing. During the questioning, it could come to light that the officer made a mistake or did not uphold the rights of the driver, something your DUI attorney will use to break the prosecution case wide open when it eventually goes to trial.

During the interrogation of the arresting officer at the DMV hearing, the DUI attorney will try to get the officer to expand upon their reasoning for conducting the search. Although the DMV hearing has no effect on the criminal case, it allows the attorney to open the door into illegal activity and use it to help get the case dismissed in favor of the driver. According to the fourth amendment rights of the driver, the police officer in this case must have reasonable cause the motorist was breaking the law when they conducted the DUI stop. When the arresting officer can not clearly describe probable cause for stopping the vehicle, the blood alcohol test results and evidence collected during the stop could be ruled inadmissible.

When you’ve been involved in a southern Chicago DUI stop, call a local DUI attorney who can carefully analyze your case to make certain that your fourth amendment rights were upheld during the arrest process. There is a very small window of opportunity to question the arresting officer, so every second counts after you are released from police custody.