Building a Second Offense DUI Defense

There are many variables to take into consideration when building a defense for second offense DUI charges in Annapolis, which is why is it so important for a person facing these charges to contact an attorney right away. A seasoned attorney can use their experience and knowledge to prepare the strongest defense possible for a person’s case.

First Steps

When an attorney is building a defense for second offense DUI charges in Annapolis, they may want to observe the contacts with the officer. This includes why the officer stopped the person and come in contact with them. Additionally, they may look at the reported observations of the officer, such as what they saw, heard, and/or smelled.

At a DUI stop, an officer may observe an odor of alcohol, slurred or stammered speech, bloodshot watery eyes, delayed cognitive response, and/or trouble getting their license and registration out. The officers are making these observations and then, at that point, they can ask a person to step out of the vehicle for a standard field sobriety test. An attorney can investigate which tests were conducted, if these tests were done correctly, and if there were any tests done that are not the standard walk-and-turn, one-legged stand, or horizontal gaze nystagmus test.

If the officer then decided that this all added up to a reasonable articulable suspicion, the attorney can see if the person was taken into custody and if they were asked to submit to a breath test or a blood draw. The attorney can also see if there was a warrant collected for a blood draw if the person did not consent.There are many variables to take into consideration.

License Suspension

Like a first offense, in a second DUI offense, if a person is a Maryland-licensed driver, their license is taken from them, they are given a paper license, which is temporary, and then they have the option again to request an administrative hearing or to do the ignition interlock program. That is score dependent and time dependent, such as when the person’s last DUI was, what the disposition on the matter was, and if the person’s license was previously suspended.

Challenging a Suspension

Challenging a license suspension after a second offense DUI is slightly different than a first offense. This is in an administrative hearing and the Motor Vehicle Administration does not send anyone to court. They send paperwork digitally and a person’s first hearing with an administrative judge is just the defendant, their attorney, and the judge.

If a person is going to challenge the stop itself and say that this is was not a good stop and something was done wrong by the officer, generally, there is a second hearing where the judge will subpoena the officer to testify.

It is likely that a person will have a second hearing in those matters where they are challenging, or if they are not challenging anything, they might ask for some leniency or some form of restricted license.