Why Probable Cause Is So Important In An OVI Case

16 December 2022
 Categories: Law, Blog


When a police officer believes that a crime has been committed, such as an OVI (operating a vehicle impaired), they have the power to pull you over and take you into custody. If the officer is able to gather evidence to prove that you were guilty of an OVI, the prosecutor might be able to convict you. However, if there was no probable cause in the first place, you may be able to have your charges dismissed.

Understanding Probable Cause

Because of the Constitution, you cannot be arrested without probable cause. This means that there must be a reason that a reasonable person would suspect that a crime was being committed.

The police do not necessarily have to pull a motorist over because they believe that the motorist was responsible for an OVI. For example, you might have been pulled over because the police officer believed you were speeding. The officer is not allowed to pull you over simply because they have a hunch that you were committing an OVI. 

DUI Arrests

After the officer has pulled you over, they might notice other signs that you were under the influence of alcohol. For example, they might notice that you were slurring your words or that you had bloodshot eyes. However, you might dispute these claims and they are not enough to necessarily arrest you. Make sure to discuss the circumstances that lead up to your arrest with an OVI lawyer.

Even if you were not in physical control of your vehicle, you might be able to file an OVI claim. For example, if you were sleeping inside your vehicle in a parking lot, a police officer might perform a welfare check. They might then suspect that you are under the influence of alcohol. To be charged with an OVI, your vehicle does not have to be in motion. You simply need to be in physical control of your vehicle. 

Defense Strategies for an OVI

If there was no reason for the officer to pull you over and if there was no reason for the officer to believe that you have committed an OVI, you might be able to have your charges dismissed. Make sure to discuss your case with an OVI attorney and they will help you gather evidence to prove your innocence. 

OVI charges can lead to serious legal penalties such as fines and imprisonment. Your ability to drive might be restricted. Therefore, you'll want to do everything you can to win your criminal case.

Reach out to an OVI defense lawyer in your area to learn more.