When you drink and drive in Minnesota, you run the risk of being arrested and facing serious consequences. In fact, you can be arrested if there is any suspicion at all that you have been drinking. If you have experienced a stop and arrest in Minnesota, you need a qualified DWI lawyer on your side.
Understanding Stop and Arrest in Minnesota
Most DWI cases begin with a traffic stop. There are two ways a DWI traffic stop can occur:
- A DWI Checkpoint; or
- A lawful traffic stop.
In the event of a DWI checkpoint, law enforcement does not need to have any suspicion in order to pull you over and test you for alcohol. In a sense, a DWI checkpoint waives your Constitutional rights and allows officers to evaluate your blood alcohol level without probable cause.
If there is no DWI checkpoint present, a police officer must have a valid reason for pulling you over. Lawful basis for stopping your vehicle may include:
- Defective equipment, such as a broken headlight or taillight;
- Failure to obey traffic signals;
- Failure to use your directional signals;
- Speeding or any other traffic violation; or
- Weaving, inability to stay in your lane, or any other sign that you are not in control of your vehicle.
Once a police officer pulls over your vehicle, he or she can conduct a sobriety check if there is reason to suspect you are under the influence. Signs of alcohol usage can include erratic driving, slurred speech, the scent of alcohol on your breath, or the presence of alcohol in your vehicle.
When there is suspicion of alcohol in your system, you will typically be subject to a field sobriety test. If you fail this test, then law enforcement has the right to arrest you, or require further testing.
Minnesota law requires you to submit to a blood alcohol test if a police officer has reasonable suspicion that you are driving under the influence. Refusal to submit to this test can result in additional charges against you.
DWI Stop and Arrest Defense Lawyer
In Minnesota, you have the right to consult with a lawyer if you are under arrest. Even before you are arrested, you also have the right to speak with a lawyer regarding a blood alcohol test. Minnesota law gives you a reasonable amount of time (typically two hours after the offense) to get in touch with a defense lawyer prior to taking the blood alcohol test. Whenever the threat of arrest, or a blood alcohol test is present, it’s always a good idea to consult with a lawyer immediately. This will help you make sure your rights are not being violated in any way. It can also help you later down the road if and when charges are actually filed against you.
Contact Us for a Free Consultation
When you have been subject to stop and arrest, or are facing any DWI charges, you need an experienced attorney on your side. The DWI lawyers at Brown Law Offices, P.A., have helped many clients get the best possible result for their impaired driving case. Our attorneys will work hard to gain a favorable outcome for you. Don’t let a DWI conviction ruin your life. Call us today at 763-323-6555, or complete our online form for a free consultation.