Commitment To Justice

Fighting Against DUI-OWI Charges

Facing DUI/OVWI charges—even for the first time—can come with serious consequences. The attorneys at Hayes Law Office  understand the weight of these charges and the possible consequences of a conviction. They explore and communicate all possible options available to each client and fight to find the best outcome. Even if the arrest was a first-time mistake, your charges could come with serious consequences. Instead of accepting the consequences of a conviction, you have the opportunity to defend yourself by fighting your charges.

The Indiana lawyers at Hayes Law Office know what is at stake with OWI charges and the consequences that can follow. They do not settle for second-best outcomes in their criminal defense cases, and they fight for their clients while exploring all potential strategies to overcome the DUI charges or minimize the potential consequences.

Indiana OWI/DUI Laws

If the officer detects a BAC of .08% or higher, you can be charged withdriving under the influence. In the State of Indiana, if someone is found to be driving while under the influence of alcohol, they could be charged with Operating a Vehicle While Intoxicated, also known as OWI or OVWI. Operating a Vehicle While Intoxicated charges can range from misdemeanors to felonies, depending on criminal history.

The following are the potential penalties for a drunk driving offense in Indiana:

  • A conviction for a first-time DUI charge includes the potential for a jail sentence of up to one year, fines of up to $5,000 and a suspended license of up to two years.
  • An arrest for a repeat-DUI offense in Indiana may bring felony charges. A conviction for a second DUI offense within 5 years of the prior conviction, faces a minimum of five days in jail, with the potential for up to 2.5 years in prison. A fine of up to $10,000 may be imposed and also faces a maximum 2.5-year DUI-related license suspension.
  • For a third DUI-conviction, the minimum jail prison time rises to 10 days. A fine of up to $10,000 may be imposed, and the license suspension is 2.5 years, and may range up to ten-years, depending upon the circumstances.

DUI Traffic Stops And Checkpoints

When performing a DUI check or a traffic stop, law enforcement officers use several methods for detecting if you are driving under the influence. The holiday season is often when law enforcement is the most active looking for intoxicated drivers. In Indiana, more traffic stops are common in metropolitan areas. Some officers will stop random drivers who are doing suspicious behavior that may indicate a driver is driving under the influence. Things like driving too slow or fast, failing to follow the proper signals, or even swerving between lanes.

Once a driver is stopped for driving under the influence, that driver will then be asked to perform a Breathalyzer test to determine if the driver BAC is over 0.8% which is the legal limit. Failing this test can lead to a possible suspension of your license or jail time.

Field Sobriety Tests

Three roadside tests are recognized as the Standardized Field Sobriety Tests:

Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGN) Test 

Officers look for involuntary eye movements called nystagmus, the onset prior to 45 degrees deviation. In lay terms, terms, officers use an object—usually a pen – to track the driver’s focus, looking for a lack of smooth pursuit of the eye in tracking the object, rapid and involuntary eye movement to evaluate for alleged alcohol impairment.

Walk-And-Turn Test

This is a form of multi-tasking test where the officer instructs the driver to count while taking nine or ten steps, then turn around and return to the starting point while counting off the steps.

One-Leg Stand Test

Here the officer will have you stand on one leg and hold this position until instructed that the test is complete and the driver can put his or her foot back down.

While performing these tests, the officer is looking for signs that you are under the influence. These signs could be loss of balance, slurred speech or incorrectly following the instructions.

Hiring a DUI attorney in Indianapolis like Hayes Law Office is low cost — and worth paying — to avoid the loss of your license, the potential loss of your job, or in some cases going to jail. If you or someone you know, has been arrested for driving under the influence or intoxicated, Attorney Hayes is ready to fight for you.

Hayes Law Office Can Build A Strong Defense For You

Whether your charges were the result of intoxication from drugs or alcohol, there may be several options available to defending against your charges. The firm’s attorneys take the time to gather all the necessary information in your case before considering what method of defense is right for you. Common successful defenses in your case may include:

  • Challenging illegal traffic stops
  • Uncovering the mishandling of evidence
  • Exposing improper maintenance or questionable testing equipment
  • Highlighting police errors

The attorneys at Hayes Law Office know that each of their clients comes to them with a unique situation, and they take it upon themselves to make sure that they do everything in their power to provide each of them with the personalized representation they deserve.

Fight A Lifetime Of Consequences

When an OWI conviction can lead to losing your license, time in jail and costly fines, you need to be sure you are fighting for the best possible outcome in your case. If you are facing OWI charges, contact Hayes Law Office today. Call the Indianapolis office at 317-982-6122 or email the firm here to schedule your initial consultation.