Nothing is probably more traumatizing and stressful than being arrested for a criminal charge. If you have been arrested for driving while intoxicated in Santa Fe, you need to be smart about what you do next. Firstly, cooperate with the law enforcement officer, and if you are asked to take a breathalyzer test, you should agree to that. Following your arrest, you need to know your Miranda rights. It is also relevant that you contact a Santa Fe TX DWI lawyer without any further delay. Here are five pointers worth noting.
- Even if this is your first DWI charge, the consequences could be severe. You may have to lose your driver’s license for up to a year, pay up to $2,000 in fines, and spend at least three days in jail, which can go up to 180 days. In other words, do not take your charges for granted.
- Your arrest-related circumstances are relevant. Was the officer compliant with applicable laws when they arrested you? Did they have probable cause to ask you to pull over? More often than not, the circumstances leading to your arrest can change the outcome.
- Your lawyer will question everything. Besides the arrest, your lawyer is in charge of probing everything else. For instance, they may question when the field sobriety tests were administered accurately or whether the breathalyzer equipment was faulty. Sometimes, the office may not have received the training required for these tests.
- A plea deal is not always a bad idea. When you accept a plea deal, you admit to the charges in exchange for a lesser sentence. If your lawyer believes that a plea deal is better than an aggressive approach, they may advise accordingly. Ensure that you understand the possible impact of pleading guilty.
- Lawyers will charge an hourly rate. While you can only really expect the best with a DWI lawyer, hiring one can be an expensive affair. Most criminal lawyers take an hourly rate, and depending on the facts of the case, you may also need to pay a retainer fee. Get a ballpark in advance so that you can work on your financial situation accordingly.
Your attorney is your most reliable resource to fight DWI charges. Don’t assume this is the end of the road because it is the prosecution’s job to present evidence. Your lawyer will check whether the prosecution’s case has loopholes and may question whether the evidence was acquired lawfully.