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How Do You Win a DWI Case in NY?

Last updated on: March 7, 2024

By Lebedin Kofman LLP

When facing DWI charges in New York, you are considered innocent until the prosecution has proven you guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. This is a high burden of proof for prosecutors, and there are many arguments available to defense attorneys to create that doubt in a DWI case.

If you’re facing a DWI case in NY, securing the right legal representation can be the decisive factor in achieving a favorable outcome. At Lebedin Kofman LLP, our experienced Nassau County criminal lawyers diligently examine all aspects of your situation, from the initial traffic stop to the administration of sobriety tests, to build a robust defense strategy. Don’t navigate this challenging process alone; contact us at (516) 212-4209 for legal assistance and explore alternative programs for first-time offenders to increase your chances of winning your DWI case.

Lebedin Kofman Case Results

All criminal charges were dismissed for the client charged with Felony DWI in Manhattan. Our client was pulled over at 2 am in Manhattan after refusing to stop for over 20 blocks. He admitted to the officer that he had 4 drinks before driving, marijuana, and prescription pills in his possession but refused to take a breathalyzer. He was also alleged to have been driving while his license was suspended as he had already had 2 prior DWI cases. He was charged with felony DWI VTL 1192.3 and VTL 1192.1 in criminal court and had refused to submit to a chemical test hearing in the DMV. Lebedin Kofman was able to win the DMV refusal to submit to a chemical test hearing for this client and secured dismissal of all of the criminal charges against him in criminal court. 

There are three main categories of defense options that DWI attorneys commonly use when representing clients facing DWI charges:

  • There was insufficient evidence to charge the defendant
  • There is insufficient evidence to convict the defendant, or
  • There were procedural mistakes made that negate the evidence

Signs that a DUI Case is Weak

There are multiple defense strategies and factors related to the arrest that can weaken a DUI case. These include instances, where the police lacked probable cause to conduct the traffic stop, improper arrest or testing procedures, were followed, credible witnesses testified to the defendant’s sobriety, or malfunctioning testing equipment was involved. Such factors may lead to the suppression of evidence or the ultimate dismissal of the charges.

  • Insufficient lawful evidence: The prosecution must present enough lawful evidence to establish each element of the charged offense. If it fails to meet this requirement, the court may choose to dismiss the charges. This can be achieved by arguing that there is a lack of adequate evidence to initiate the charges in the first place.
  • Unlawful initial traffic stop: Many DWI cases originate from a traffic stop, and there are specific criteria that define a lawful stop. If it can be proven that the initial traffic stop was unlawful, any evidence obtained as a result of that stop may be deemed inadmissible. This can significantly contribute to having the charges dismissed.
  • Lack of probable cause for arrest: Following the initial traffic stop, a police officer must have a valid reason, usually based on probable cause, to make an arrest. If it can be argued that the officer lacked probable cause for the arrest, it weakens the case against the defendant and increases the chances of dismissal.

If you’ve been charged with a DUI, it’s crucial to be aware of signs indicating a weak case against you. At Lebedin Kofman LLP, our experienced Manhattan DWI lawyers understand the nuances of DUI cases and can analyze the evidence, scrutinize police procedures, and challenge any weak points in the prosecution’s argument. Protect your rights and secure the best outcome possible for your situation by contacting us today.

Signs that a DUI Case is Weak Description
Insufficient lawful evidence The prosecution must present enough lawful evidence to establish each element of the charged offense. If there is a lack of adequate evidence, the court may choose to dismiss the charges.
Unlawful initial traffic stop If it can be proven that the initial traffic stop was unlawful, any evidence obtained as a result of that stop may be deemed inadmissible. This can significantly contribute to having the charges dismissed.
Lack of probable cause for arrest If it can be argued that the officer lacked probable cause for the arrest, it weakens the case against the defendant and increases the chances of dismissal.

Insufficient Evidence to Charge

Law enforcement does not have unlimited latitude when making traffic stops. Limits are placed on police authority to ensure individuals’ rights against unlawful search and seizure. Consequently, police have to operate within the limits of the law whenever making a traffic stop.

A law enforcement officer may make a traffic stop if there is

  • Probable cause to believe that the driver has committed a traffic violation
  • Some form of equipment violation
  • Reasonable suspicion that a crime has been committed, is in the process of being committed or is about to be committed
  • Administration of a DWI checkpoint

When a traffic stop is conducted unlawfully, it invalidates any evidence that was collected. Without sufficient evidence, a trial would be a waste of the state’s time, and charges will be dropped. 

DWI attorney in Manhattan

Insufficient Evidence to Convict

Even when the prosecution has sufficient evidence to bring charges and continue to trial, they still must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. In this case, it is the job of the defense to cast doubt on the evidence, the way it was collected, or its results. 

A skilled criminal defense attorney in New York may do this by questioning the accuracy of the BAC test results, its lawful collection, or a law enforcement officer’s testimony regarding the defendant’s intoxication. Police procedures must be strictly followed and testing handled with great care. If there is doubt concerning the collection of evidence, the legitimacy of the results, or other possible errors, charges may be dismissed.

Procedural Mistakes Made

Defendants in criminal cases are afforded important legal protections and procedures must be maintained in order to keep the system as fair as possible. If errors are made, it can derail the prosecution’s case. 

Errors can include things such as

  • Whether breathalyzer equipment was administered properly
  • Whether blood samples were properly stored or otherwise contaminated
  • Whether Miranda rights were given by law enforcement
  • Whether there were inaccuracies in reports, paperwork, or testimony

When the state makes procedural mistakes, charges can be dismissed. 

There are times when there is simply no way to have DWI charges dismissed entirely. In these cases, the defense will look at other options, such as getting charges reduced to lessen the severity of the penalties. 

While there may be multiple ways to reduce the negative impact of a DWI, it is never a good idea to face the system alone. It is critical to have the assistance of an experienced DWI defense attorney in NY who understands the laws and the complicated nature of DWI violations and their consequences. 

At Lebedin Kofman, we believe all individuals who have been charged with a DWI in New York deserve a quality defense. If you are facing DWI charges, call our skilled team of New York DWI lawyers at (516) 212-4209 or contact us through our website contact form to schedule a free consultation. 

Criminal DefenseDUI/DWI

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