Kalamazoo, MI- A change in the language of Michigan’s DUI was intended to make it easier to take drunken or drugged drivers off the road, but instead lawmakers unintentionally made it more possible for some to avoid a DUI conviction.
Last month, Michigan lawmakers changed the wording of the state’s DUI field sobriety test laws with the aim of making it easier for police to arrest drugged drivers by changing t. But in tweaking the law, lawmakers failed to clearly define field sobriety tests, and thus giving DUI defense attorneys another way to challenge evidence.
Rep. Dan Lauwers explained to the Detroit News:
“It boils down to a discrepancy related to field sobriety testing, which is not permissible in drugged driving cases but still should be for drunk driving cases. Preliminary breath tests have not been permitted (as evidence), but we were trying to exclude other testing in drugged driving cases because defense attorneys have consistently challenged them.”
Field sobriety tests gauge whether a motorist is intoxicated by subjecting to cognitive and motor skill tests. These test are used by police officers on the roadside and help them determine if a DUI suspect should be subject to additional tests and ultimately arrested.
The amended law went into effect Jan. 15th, and since then, the Detroit Free Press reports that the change has compelled some lead judges deem sobriety test results inadmissible in court, giving more people the opportunity to avoid a drugged driving conviction.
But not all judges interpret the law in the same way, and some have refused to dismiss the results of sobriety tests in drugged driving cases, the Detroit Free Press reported.
Rep. Lauwers told the Detroit Free Press that legislators are working on correcting the language in the law and hope it will be put on the fast track.
We at USA Attorneys want to emphasize that driving under the influence is dangerous, and it’s wrong. You can avoid the headaches of a DUI charge in Michigan by not driving after you slam back several beers or smoke marijuana. But we understand that drugs and alcohol push good judgment to the wayside and you deserve the right to do whatever you can to mitigate the consequences of your actions. This is why you need a knowledgeable DUI attorney from Michigan on your side.
Unless you’ve been charged with a DUI before –and, if that’s the case you, need a DUI attorney more than ever– you may not realize that the penalties are not short term. After you’ve served your sentence, which most often entails jail time, suspension of your driver’s license, and costly fines, a DUI convicted will have negative ramifications on your life that could persist for years. It is possible for you to lose your job or be barred from your career of choice because you were convicted of a DUI. Don’t risk your future and financial security over this mistake; hire a DUI attorney immediately.