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Charged with drunk driving? Why you need to defend yourself

Getting charged with drunk driving can be an embarrassing experience. We all know that we shouldn't drink and drive, so the last thing you may want if you've been arrested for the offense is for others to know about it. Because of this, many people decide that they are going to deal with the consequences as quietly as possible and hope the whole situation just goes away.

However, this situation won't just go away, and unfortunately, the consequences aren't always easy to keep quiet. Further, it must be noted that no one is perfect; we all make mistakes. With all this in mind, we want to encourage readers who have been charged with DUI in Louisiana to seriously consider their right to defend themselves. Below are three reasons why.

  1. The consequences are serious. Depending on the various factors that may be involved in your charges, you could be facing huge fines, jail time and license suspension. These penalties increase if you injure someone in an accident, have previous offenses or were very intoxicated at the time.
  2. Your rights may have been violated. Police have a responsibility to comply with proper procedures when it comes to conducting traffic stops, administering sobriety tests and detaining people. If they fail to do these things, your rights may have been violated and any charges resulting from their mistakes or bad judgments can and should be thrown out.
  3. Your future self will thank you. Especially if this is your first offense, you may not feel like it's a big deal to just plead guilty. However, this will stay on your record and affect your future. Your insurance rates could skyrocket; the offense could show up during background checks for employment; if you are arrested for DUI again, the charges will escalate because of a previous DUI conviction.

Every person has the right to defend themselves against criminal charges, including DUI. Before you decide not to defend yourself and just plead guilty, take some time to truly consider the ramifications of that decision. It can also be a good idea to consult an attorney who can help you understand the options you have as well as the steps you might take to seek a reduction or dismissal of charges.

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