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Campbell County criminal defense attorney DUI

Although you consent to take roadside blood alcohol content (BAC) tests when a Tennessee DMV issues your driver’s license, there are still reasons that you may wish to contest alcohol breathalyzer tests. A 2019 New York Times investigation discovered that in many cases, alcohol breath test machines are not reliable enough to justify the nearly 1 million Americans arrested each year for driving under the influence (DUI). To gain a deeper understanding of why you and your attorney should consider contesting an alcohol breath test, it is crucial to understand why these machines mislead in so many cases. 

Breath Alcohol Tests

Part of The New York Times' investigation discovered that judges in Massachusetts and New Jersey discarded 30,000 breathalyzer tests in just one year due to human error. Thousands of more drivers have had their tests invalidated, and that alone is a strong reason to consider contesting the results of your BAC test. 

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Campbell County drunk driving defense attorney

When considering DUI laws, it is easy to forget that having an open container of an alcoholic beverage in your vehicle can have separate consequences. We will explain when and why a driver can be punished by Tennessee’s open container law, but know that if you are involved in any aspect of a DUI, it is imperative that you seek the legal guidance of an accomplished Tennessee DUI attorney. With a strong defense, you can protect your rights to the fullest extent. 

Tennessee’s Open Container Law

On paper, Tennessee’s open container law is fairly simple: If the driver has an alcoholic beverage that is open or the seal is broken and it is accessible, he or she can be punished. However, there is some fine print that should be understood about this rule. For instance, this law is designed to prevent a driver from consuming an alcoholic beverage while driving. It does not necessarily prevent passengers from having alcoholic beverages or for alcohol to be in areas of the vehicle that are inaccessible to the driver. 

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Campbell County drunk driving defense attorney

Perhaps you and a friend were enjoying a few drinks after work and your friend claims that he or she is sober enough to drive. However, you may wonder if you will be also held responsible if your friend is charged with a DUI? The short answer: Yes. Under Tennessee legislation, anyone who gets into a vehicle with an intoxicated driver is equally responsible in determining whether or not the driver is in a fit state to be behind the wheel. The details of this Tennessee law are explained below, but remember that if you are ever charged with a DUI, it is imperative that you seek assistance from an experienced Tennessee attorney to avoid a criminal conviction.

Tennessee’s DUI By Consent Law

Like in all areas of the country, Tennessee drivers who have blood alcohol content (BAC) above the legal limit can face significant punishment that corresponds to how many times they have committed the offense. However, the driver may not be the only person subject to criminal charges. Any passengers who have agreed to let that person drive will be given the exact same DUI charges through Tennessee’s DUI By Consent law. For example, if a passenger and an intoxicated driver are both given their first DUI charge, they may face at least 48 hours of jail time, their licenses revoked, fined, the installation of an Ignition Interlock Device, and more. 

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Campbell County BUI defense attorney

If law enforcement personnel suspect that you are driving under the influence in Tennessee, they will most likely ask that you take a Breathalyzer test to obtain an estimation of the alcohol levels in your body. They also might ask you to take other, more subjective field sobriety tests, such as the Walk and Turn, One Leg Stand, and Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus tests. You are faced with an important choice when a police officer asks you to take a Breathalyzer test or field sobriety tests, so it is essential to know what the law requires of you at that moment, as well as following an arrest. Regardless of the circumstances of your arrest, you will want to work with an accomplished criminal defense attorney to aggressively defend your rights and minimize the potential consequences you may face.

Tennesse’s Implied Consent Law

In Tennessee, when motorists obtain their licenses, they automatically give consent to submit to a blood alcohol content (BAC) test if they are requested to do so by police. However, it is important to understand that implied consent does not apply to roadside breathalyzer tests or field sobriety tests. These tests can be refused, although this refusal may give an officer probable cause to arrest you on suspicion of drunk driving.

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Campbell County boating under the influence attorney

The weather is starting to improve, and people will soon be able to participate in their favorite outdoor activities. Tennessee is rich with bodies of water for everyone to enjoy, whether it is just for an afternoon swim or a day of boating. However, just like on the roads, Tennessee’s waters are protected from those who use controlled substances before operating a watercraft. Boating under the influence (BUI) of drugs or alcohol greatly impairs a driver’s ability to safely maneuver the vessel. BUI is a crime, since boaters who choose to do this run the risk of hurting themselves or others. This is why anyone caught operating a boat while intoxicated can be charged with a misdemeanor offense, which carries significant criminal penalties if convicted.

What Is Tennessee’s BUI Law?

The state of Tennessee forbids those who operate any water vessel to do so while impaired. This includes using any of the following:

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