I blew a .19 after wrecking my car, and was arrested. I can't really afford an attorney, but, will having an attorney will affect my outcome?
An attorney can help in many ways. They normally will explain the process. . .which includes more than just what happens in court. There are implications with DMV, licensing issues and the mechanics of court.
If you can't afford an attorney, ask for a Public Defender. DWI cases are extraordinary complex. Understanding how things work, reviewing legal issues and assisting through the process is what lawyers do.
North Carolina DWI Attorney
This is a great question. An excellent DUI attorney can make a difference. Experienced criminal defense lawyers know how to raise a reasonable doubt.
On these facts, it is reasonable to go with a Public Defender. At the first listing, the PD may convey any offers made by the DA. If things look bad then get private counsel.
You should certainly apply for a court appointed lawyer. DWIs are actually quite complicated, and there are collateral issues you'll want to talk to your lawyer about. In a wreck case, a lot turns on issues of "relevant time" and whether they can put you behind the wheel. Even if you made an admission, there may be a Trexler issue - corpus delicti.
In addition, there are some steps you can take to help mitigate the effects of the DWI conviction - substance abuse treatment, community service, etc. that can save you money. You also should be aware that if you are convicted of the .19, you will likely have an Interlock device in your car. These are all issues better handled with the help of an attorney - court appointed, or private.
A lawyer can help. If you can't afford one, apply for appointed counsel. It can make a difference in what happens to you. That some machine gives you a high number does not mean that you broke the law or that they can prove it. Was the machine working? Did they follow proper procedures in obtaining the test. What proof, other than that machine do they have?
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I am an experienced Wisconsin drunk driving (DUI/OWI/DWI) defense lawyer practicing in Madison (Dane County) Wisconsin. The laws in each jurisdiction can be very different. I cannot give legal advice over the Internet nor can I establish an attorney client relationship with you.
If something I say disagrees with what your own lawyer is telling you, you should rely on your lawyer who is familiar with you, your entire case, the local courts and practices.
To deal with a legal problem, nothing is better than to consult with a lawyer who will give you some time and advice. If you cannot afford an attorney, there should be agencies in your area that can provide discounted, or even free, legal services.
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