San Antonio & Austin Arrest Mistakes

DWI Mistakes

San Antonio DWI attorney Jamie Balagia is experienced representing people charged with a DWI in Texas.  Whether you were arrested in San Antonio or Austin, or anywhere in-between, the San Antonio DWI Attorneys, and Austin DWI Attorneys at our offices are standing by right now to help you understand what you face after being arrested for DWI in Texas. Call us right now for a free, confidential case evaluation!

Here is a list of the ten most common mistakes that police officer make when arresting people for DWI.

  1. Assuming that driving behavior is related to alcohol consumption.  Many of the driving cues officers look for in drunk driving cases is often caused by many things beside alcohol intoxication.  There are more non-alcohol related accidents everyday than alcohol related accidents.
  2. Assuming the odor of alcoholic beverages means you are intoxicated.  Not everyone who drinks is drunk.  Not even everyone who has an odor of alcoholic beverage has been drinking.  Mouthwash, denture solutions, or having an alcoholic drink accidentally spilled on your clothes may explain the odor of alcohol.  Our Austin DWI attorneys, and San Antonio DWI attorneys can help the judges and jurors understand this, and help you challenge the notion that just because an officer smelled alcohol means you were intoxicated.
  3. Failing to ask questions about your medical problems – many medical issues imitate clues of intoxication. Yet, the police do not know whether you have any of these conditions.  Even medical issues in the past – that you believe no longer affect you can cause you to fail the Field Sobriety Tests in Texas.
  4. Failing to understand your normal physical limitations. A large number of people cannot pass the standardized field sobriety tests without having consumed any alcohol.  All scientific testing requires a baseline score.  A baseline is simply how you perform on the tests without any form of impairment.  Scientist then compare how you perform on the tests without any impairment to how you perform on the test while impaired and rate the change of impairment.  The officer has no comparison of how you would perform the same test on your best day.
  5. Being aware of, but failing to eliminate, distractions during SFSTs such as loose gravel, surfaces that are not level, environmental issues (misting, wind blowing, darkness), flashing lights, etc. These factors are under his control since he picks the time and place for the testing.
  6. Failing to give proper instructions during the instructional phase of the SFST’s. If any one of the SFST elements is changed, the validity of the test is compromised! Officers will later say that he “substantially complied” even though any deviation on your part results in failure.  Thus, the government is holding you to a different standard than they hold themselves too.
  7. Failure to give proper instructions during the administration phase of the exercise.  The Officer must give proper instructions and demonstrate the test to you in the proper manner before the Walk and Turn Test and One Leg Stand Test can be performed. If the Instructions or Demonstration is done incorrectly by the officer then the results should not legitimately be used against you.
  8. Failure to follow proper sequence of the SFST’s.  The officer cannot just make it up as he goes, although this is how many officers do their job. San Antonio DWI Attorney Jamie Balagia is a certified NHTSA SFST Instructor, which means he often knows more about these tests than the officer who gave you the test.
  9. Administering invalid “tests” which are not supported by research studies – the officers are using exercises which have a 50/50 reliability rate (flip a coin). Many officers when making a DWI in Texas case will use tasks that they know have been rejected by the researchers and are not part of the Standardized program.
  10. Tricking the you to take the breath test by suggesting you will be released if you pass the test. Also, reading the paperwork to you incorrectly or using outdated paperwork – renders the breath test result suppressible. Believe it or not, there are rules that the cops must follow in order to get the breath test results into a courtroom.

As nearly all San Antonio DWI attorneys will tell you, the outcome of any DWI in Texas depends on the facts of the case.  Good or bad performance on any one specific task in the DWI detection and arrest process will usually not win or lose your case.  It takes a careful review of every fact of your case by a trained and experienced San Antonio or Austin, Texas DWI attorney to find the best defense for your case.  Call San Antonio DWI Attorney Jamie Balagia right now for a free, confidential consultation about your DWI in Texas.


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