Here’s Why You Need A Lawyer To Handle Your DWI/DUI In Waynesville, North Carolina
North Carolina, like almost all states, takes Driving While Impaired (DWI) very seriously. Prosecutors go after those charged with DWI and will not hesitate to inflict upon them with the most stringent penalties.
It is very, very seldom that those charged with driving under the influence will get a “reduction.”
That is why you need an experienced and proven lawyer to be on your side to protect your rights, particularly one who knows the laws and situations when police do not follow proper procedures.
Why Choose Nielsen Legal?
At Nielsen Legal, we are committed to aggressively defend your rights. We understand what you are going through and what’s at stake.
Our founding attorney, Joshua Nielsen, has been trying cases throughout five counties for many years. He has built a strong reputation and relationship with both prosecutors and judges.
Josh is NHTSA (National Highway Transportation Safety Administration) certified, the same certification and training that law enforcement typically undergoes, which provides a substantial edge when evaluating how the police handled your case.
He can explain what each field sobriety test means, if the officer did it correctly and whether the officer had probable cause to arrest you. Knowing this is very important because if you blew and gave a breath sample, we may need to suppress that number and try and keep it out of evidence if the officer did not do the tests correctly.
If you refused to give a breath sample or blood was drawn, we can help. Refusals are treated differently and can have severe consequences on your ability to drive. If you have refused either a blood or breath sample, the NC DMV can revoke or suspend your driving privilege for one (1) year. If you have refused, or been told you refused, contact us immediately. There are very important steps you need to take to either request a DMV hearing and contest the refusal, or we may be able to get you a driving privilege prior to the one year of suspension.
Additionally, Josh has focused for years on defending DWI in Waynesville, Asheville and surrounding areas and has taken numerous cases through trial in multiple counties.
Can I Be Charged With DWI/DUI for Taking Prescription Drugs?
You can be charged in North Carolina, like in many states, with a DWI/DUI for taking medically prescribed controlled substances or narcotics. Many people believe that if they are prescribed a drug then they can lawfully take the drug and still drive, if the physician did not warn them to not drive. This certainly seems logical. However, we have tried numerous cases where people have been charged with DWI for taking prescription drugs or even over the counter (OTC) drugs such as these:
- Anti-depressants: Paxil, Lexapro, Celexa
- Bi-polar medication
The truth is, the police or law enforcement may not know if you are impaired or not. They are not doctors and do not know you personally to know if whatever drug you have taken is impairing your ability to drive. These cases we nearly always take to trial because the officer is not a doctor or a pharmacist and the prosecution will have to prove that whatever you took, was actually impairing your mental or physical faculties, or both.
Most commonly, we see the prosecution try and prove DWIs where there is no alcohol involved by trying to prove appreciable impairment. What this means is that even though there is no alcohol, the State can still try and prove you were impaired (with or without taking a blood draw) by proving your mental or physical faculties (abilities) or both were impaired at a relevant time to the driving.
Generally, the criminal elements of the crime for DWI/DUI are:
- Operating a vehicle (tractors, scooters, mopeds, bicycles and even horses are considered vehicles);
- On a street, public highway or public vehicular area (parking lots are generally included);
- With a BAC of .08 or greater
It is important to know that the state or prosecutor can still try and prove you were Driving While Impaired even if there is no BAC number, whether you refused the test or whether the officer believes you were under an impairing substance such as medication. These types of cases need experienced legal representation due to the complexity of the case. Every case is different. Let us provide you with a free consultation and discuss your rights and your case.
For every case, Josh will:
- Explain the complex process involved
- Review evidence and evaluate the strengths and weakness of your case
- Get you a pretrial driving privilege if you are eligible
- Get you a post-trial driving privilege
- Locate resources such as ADETS and assessments