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3 ways to contest an OVI in Ohio

Regardless of what each state calls it, operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs is illegal everywhere in the U.S. An OVI in Ohio can result in high fines, jail time, loss of license, ignition interlock devices and mandatory participation in treatment courses.

The best way to increase your chances of getting out of OVI charges or reducing the penalties you may inevitably face is by hiring a qualified criminal defense attorney. A lawyer can fight your OVI by proving the following three points.

1. No reason for the traffic stop

A review of the situation may reveal that the police officer had no right to pull you over in the first place due to a lack of reasonable suspicion. Or the officer may not have had sufficient probable cause to search your vehicle or put you under arrest. If the police did not follow proper protocol, then the court may go as far as dismissing the charges altogether.

2. Faulty testing

After pulling you over, the police may require you to take a field sobriety test. These are notorious for being inaccurate due to improper training, the surroundings, health conditions and other factors that can affect the results. Alternatively or additionally, you may have to take a chemical test, which samples your breath, blood or urine to establish intoxication. While these tests are more accurate, they are not foolproof. Defenses include:

  • Incorrect calibration of a breathalyzer
  • Improper administration of the test
  • Mix-up of samples in the lab
  • Inaccurate results due to other circumstances

Other laws, such as the time limit on administering the test and notifying you of your right to an independent test, may affect the admissibility of the results as evidence.

3. Involuntary intoxication

While it may not seem likely, it is possible that you were not aware of being drunk. For example, someone may have spiked your drink at the party you just left. Or perhaps you were unaware of the side effects of your medication or thought you had allowed enough time for them to wear off. Additional defenses will rely on the specifics of your case.

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