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What is a DUI affirmative defense strategy?

When New Mexico police make a traffic stop, they must have a justifiable reason to do so. Many times, the reason is suspected driver intoxication based on erratic movement of a vehicle. Being arrested and charged with DUI creates an immediate need to develop a strong defense.

An option known as an “affirmative defense” strategy may be viable in certain circumstances. Just as a police officer can demonstrate a reasonable cause for making a traffic stop, someone facing DUI charges may be able to prove a justifiable reason for driving under the influence of alcohol. One of the most common types of affirmative defense is involuntary intoxication.

How an involuntary intoxication defense can affect a DUI case

To implement an involuntary intoxication affirmative defense in a DUI case, an accused individual would provide evidence to the court to show unawareness of alcohol consumption before driving. For example, if a person can prove that someone spiked a drink at a party without his or her knowledge, this constitutes evidence of involuntary intoxication. In addition to this DUI defense option, another strategy is to demonstrate that it was necessary to drive after consuming alcohol, such as if the accused individual was escaping danger.

If evidence for a DUI affirmative defense does not exist, a person facing drunk driving charges in New Mexico may still have other options. For example, if police made an improper traffic stop or used a Breathalyzer device that was not properly calibrated, a person can file a motion to dismiss the case or challenge some (or all) of the evidence as inadmissible. For assistance in navigating the criminal justice system, it is always best to seek support from an experienced criminal law attorney.