DUI charges can be life-altering, which is why it is so important for you to know what to do and take immediate action to protect your rights and your future. If you were arrested for a DUI, you might feel overwhelmed, confused, and unsure of your next step. It can be extremely difficult to deal with the repercussions of any type of arrest, especially if there was also a car crash involved, or if you or someone else is injured. Either way, DUI cases can be complex and difficult to navigate, but you need to know what to do if you wish to protect yourself from serious legal repercussions.
DUI Laws in Oklahoma
In Oklahoma, a DUI conviction could lead to hefty fines, the loss of your driver’s license, increased insurance rates, and even time behind bars. According to the law, if a driver is caught with blood alcohol concentration (BAC) above the legal limit of 0.08%, they could be arrested on DUI charges. The penalties for a conviction could be even worse if the driver injured someone else, caused substantial damage while driving, or drive with an extremely high BAC. If you have been convicted for DUI in the past, subsequent convictions will be punished more severely and could result in costlier fines, longer jail sentences, and a longer period of driver’s license suspension.
If you were arrested for driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, take the following steps to protect your future:
1. Keep Notes
Write down everything you remember as soon as possible. Amid all the turmoil of your arrest and subsequent hearings, you may become forgetful and key details may slip through the cracks. To avoid this, make sure you write down all the details of your arrest as soon as you are able. Write about what happened before the arrest, where you went, what you did, who was there, and at what time. If you did drink, write down how much, what it was, and at what time. If you have proof of any of your claims, such as receipts from the bar you visited, make sure you keep those documents safe.
Also, take notes of the actual arrest and crash, if one occurred. Did the police officer tell you that the field test was optional, and did he or she read you your Miranda rights before you were arrested? Make sure you were treated fairly and that your rights were honored. If they were not, jot down any potential missteps so that you can discuss them with your attorney later.
If you were involved in a car accident, write down how it was caused. Was there poor visibility on the road? Was there debris, or were you sick? If there were any factors influencing your driving capabilities or affecting road safety, take note. If there were certain hazards on the road, return to the scene and take photos of those hazards if they are still there.
2. Write Down Witness Accounts
Once you’ve recorded everything you remember about the incident itself, track down any witnesses who saw you before the accident, or witnessed the accident itself. For example, if someone saw the accident take place and agrees that the icy road contributed to your crash, their testimony could be useful in fighting DUI charges. Also, if the bartender who served you or the valet attendant who saw you before you drove away can attest to your sobriety, their testimonies could also serve you well.
Track down anyone you believe could serve as a useful witness, and ask if they would mind providing a testimony. Write down their full name and contact information for your own records.
3. Hire an Attorney
Once you’ve taken immediate action to consider your current situation, make sure you reach out to a knowledgeable criminal defense lawyer who knows precisely how to fight DUI charges in Oklahoma. Having a strong, capable attorney on your side can mean the difference between your freedom and incarceration. Don’t gamble with your future, make sure you work with an attorney who understands cases like yours and will provide you with the attention you deserve.
Contact Mazaheri Law Firm today to get started on your DUI case in Oklahoma City.