If you have been charged with operating a vehicle while intoxicated (OVI) or drunk driving (DUI) it is critical that you have an experienced criminal defense lawyer to represent you. In Ohio an OVI / DUI is a serious charge that could result in jail time, forfeiture of your vehicle, high fines, and loss of your driver’s license. In fact, even a first offense carries a minimum mandatory penalty of three days in jail and six month driver’s license suspension. With subsequent offenses, the penalties can be even more severe, resulting in a felony OVI and an indefinite suspension of your driver’s license. If you are a commercial driver with a CDL, not only will a conviction subject you to the same sentence as everyone else, but there will also be an impact on your CDL that could end your driving career – even if you were not driving a commercial vehicle at the time of the alleged offense.
A charge for OVI or DUI can happen to anyone at any time despite the fact that it is legal to drink and drive in Ohio. You did not just read a grammatical error, it is in fact legal to drink and drive in Ohio despite the popular misconception that it is not. However, it becomes unlawful when a person becomes intoxicated or their blood alcohol content is .08% or above (.02% for persons under 21 and .04% for commercial vehicle operators). Moreover, the field sobriety tests used by police officers to detect signs of intoxication are scientifically unreliable and subject to interpretation. Even the chemical tests for intoxication are not always right and/or there can be issues with the machine that makes the test inadmissible at trial.
The Dayton criminal defense attorneys at the Brannon Law Firm will evaluate the specific facts and circumstances of each case to determine which defenses will provide the most favorable outcome for our client. We also take the time to explain to our clients the potential outcomes, penalties and alternative programs that are available under the complex and constantly changing laws concerning OVI / DUI offenses. Contact our firm today for a free consultation if you have been charged with a drunk driving offense to make sure you get the best possible outcome in your case.