Operating Under the Influence (OUI) is a charge similar to Driving Under the Influence (DUI) with the main difference being that you do not actually have to drive a car to be charged with OUI. Basically, if you are intoxicated with a blood alcohol level of .08% or higher, and behind the wheel of a car whether it is moving or not, you can be charged with a crime.
While some people charged with OUI will try to claim a variety of defenses that seldom work, such as they were just sitting in their own driveway, or that there is no direct evidence connecting them to the crime. With OUI charges, circumstantial evidence is enough to convict you. Circumstantial evidence may include the smell of alcohol coming from your car, you fail field sobriety tests even though nobody saw you driving, or witnesses saw you behind the wheel of a car. All offer enough proof that can be used to convict you.
While that can work against you, there are several possible defenses that can be used in an OUI case. While each case is different, some defenses may include:
- A lack of credible witnesses
- Improper administration of a breathalyzer test
- Police misconduct or lack of credibility
- Improper calibration of an intoxilizer
- Prosecutorial incompetence
- Exclusion of evidence
- Interfering chemicals such as prescription drugs or chewing tobacco
- Diabetes or hyperglycemia
- Poorly written police report
- No visible sign of mental impairment
On the surface, OUI cases may appear simple and straightforward, but there are many possible ways to attack the observations and analysis that can be used to convict you.
If you’ve been charged with an OUI, your first step should be to contact an attorney to help you sort out the best possible defenses for your particular situation.
Bowser Law serves clients in communities throughout Massachusetts and New Hampshire.