Experienced Michigan OWI Defense Lawyers Assist Accused Motorists
Metamora firm counters allegations of drunk and drug-impaired driving
Regardless of your prior record, an arrest for Operating While Intoxicated (OWI) can seriously disrupt your life and possibly lead to some time behind bars. This law prohibits driving while you are legally drunk, impaired by drugs or you have ingested another type of intoxicating substance that substantially affects your ability to drive a motor vehicle safely. At Kohl, Harris, Nolan & McCarthy, P.C. in Metamora, we are experienced Michigan attorneys who handle all types of OWI cases and seek ways to minimize the negative impact on our clients.
Legal standards and penalties associated with Operating While Intoxicated
Under Michigan law, a driver of a passenger vehicle who is over 21 years old is considered legally intoxicated if their blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) is .08 percent or higher, while younger drivers (.02) and operators of commercial vehicles (.04) have even tougher standards. Determining whether someone is under the influence of illegal drugs or prescription medication can be trickier and more subjective. Our defense attorneys look beyond police accounts when developing a strategy on behalf of Michigan residents.
If convicted of a first-offense OWI, a misdemeanor, you could face fines up to $500, up to 90 days in jail, driver’s license suspension and possible installation of an ignition interlock device in your car, among other penalties. For a second drunk driving offense, also a misdemeanor, you could face a maximum fine of $1,000 and a year in jail along with a driver’s license revocation. A third OWI offense, however, carries more serious penalties: as a Class E felony, it is punishable by up to five years in prison. With so much at stake, you need an experienced attorney who can present an effective defense. By reviewing the facts to see if proper legal ground existed for the stop and arrest, we can start pushing back against the authorities as soon as you retain our firm.
Litigators challenge results of field sobriety and breathalyzer tests
Police officers typically determine if a motorist is intoxicated by performing a field sobriety test and/or taking a breathalyzer reading. Both methods could produce misleading results. One of our skillful defense litigators can look at the facts to assess if your OWI arrest was based on faulty evidence. In a field sobriety test, the officer might ask the driver to walk a straight line or stand on a single leg. There are many reasons besides alcohol why someone stopped would be unable to respond correctly, including a disability, balance problem or even sheer nervousness.
Drivers whose breathalyzer results exceed the relevant legal intoxication limit might believe that there is no viable defense to the OWI charge against them. This assumption could be a big mistake, because if you plead guilty immediately, you likely won’t get the chance to learn if the test was administered correctly or if the sample was tainted in some manner. Before you make your decision on how to proceed, we can evaluate the potential case against you and see if inconsistencies exist between the results of the field sobriety test and the breathalyzer.
Contact an aggressive Michigan OWI defense lawyer to schedule a free consultation
Kohl, Harris, Nolan & McCarthy, P.C. represents Michigan drivers accused of operating their vehicle while intoxicated. If you have been arrested on a drunk driving charge, please call 810-212-5005 or contact us online for a free consultation to discuss potential defenses. Our office is in Metamora.