Getting arrested for drinking and driving is a serious charge that can bring serious penalties. But according to the courts, driving is a broad term, which is why it is important to have an accomplished lawyer that is capable of defining driving in Midland DUI cases. If you have been charged with a DUI, contact an attorney today.
State Law Defining Driving
The state law defines driving as operating a motor vehicle. There is no statutory in the courts definition of what operating means. There have been cases that have gone up to the highest court, the CCA, the Court of Criminal Appeals, trying to define what operation means to the jury. This is why the defendant needs an experienced lawyer for the cases pertaining to defining driving in Midland DUI cases.
The government is going to allege who the driver is, which means the passenger is probably not going to get charged with a DWI. The passenger may get charged with a public intoxication case but they are going to have to make an allegation of who the actual driver is.
Arrested for DUI Other Than on the Road
Someone can be arrested for a DUI in any place that is defined as a public place, which is a broad statute. This means it can be in a Walmart parking lot, a park, a parking garage, almost any place that a substantial amount of the public has access to. A person can be arrested for DUI at any place that is not the person’s own personal property.
For example, if a person is a farmer and they go out into their cotton field, that is not a public place. The cotton field is the farmer’s own property. Walmart is owned by a private company, but if somebody’s driving in the parking lot at Walmart is intoxicated, it is a public place for the purposes of a DWI.
Law Enforcement Patrolling Near Bars and Restaurants
It is common to see officers, especially in the timeframe when bars are closing, to be driving around bars and restaurants. In some cases, officers will sit in parking lots of other businesses across from that area.
Building a Defense
Every DUI case is different. If it involves defining driving in a Midland DUI case, the attorney needs to know the facts of that case.
For example, a person may drive to the bar, go into the bar and become intoxicated, and then goes out to their car to sleep it off until the morning. Before the individual falls asleep, the may turn on the vehicle to stay warm, but still, leave the car parked. An officer could knock on the car window to wake them and then arrest them for a DUI.
This is a situation in which an attorney might argue that there was not an operation of the motor vehicle. Cases have been dismissed and jurors have found people not guilty of non-operation type of cases. Contact a lawyer today to get started on your case.