Driving Under the Influence in Wayne County, Michigan

A DUI in Wayne County can have severe direct and indirect consequences. In addition to the possibility of jail and probation, a DUI conviction can result in losing your driving privileges, firearm rights, and more. 

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What is a Wayne County DUI?

In Michigan, “OWI” stands for “Operating While Intoxicated.” It is the legal term used to describe the offense of driving a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or other intoxicating substances. OWI is equivalent to what is commonly referred to in Wayne County, Michigan, as DUI (Driving Under the Influence) or DWI (Driving While Intoxicated) in other states.

Here are some key points about OWI in Michigan:

  • Blood Alcohol Content (BAC): In Michigan, an adult (age 21 and over) can be charged with OWI if they operate a vehicle with a BAC of 0.08% or higher. For drivers under the age of 21, any amount of alcohol in their system can lead to an OWI charge.
  • Enhanced Penalties: Michigan has enhanced penalties for “High BAC” offenses, often called “Super Drunk Driving.” If a driver’s BAC is 0.17% or higher, they face more severe penalties, including longer jail time, higher fines, and longer license suspension.
  • Penalties: Convictions for OWI in Michigan can result in various penalties, including fines, jail time (from 93 days to five (5) years), community service, driver’s license suspension, and mandatory alcohol or drug education or treatment. Repeat offenders face more severe penalties.
  • License Sanctions: The driver’s license may be suspended after an OWI conviction. The length of the suspension and the possibility of obtaining a restricted license depend on the specifics of the offense and the driver’s prior record.
  • Implied Consent Law: Michigan has an implied consent law, which means that if you operate a vehicle in the state, you have implicitly agreed to submit to chemical tests (blood, breath, or urine) to determine your BAC or the presence of drugs. Refusal to take a blood or breathalyzer test will result in an “implied consent” license suspension. Refusing a preliminary breath test (PBT) does not result in a suspension.
  • Zero Tolerance for Minors: As mentioned, drivers under the age of 21 face a zero-tolerance policy. This means they can be charged with an OWI offense even with a very low BAC.

If someone faces a DUI in Wayne County, Michigan, it’s crucial to consult a qualified, reputable defense attorney to protect and defend them.

DUI Defense in Wayne County, Michigan

In Wayne County, Michigan, as in many jurisdictions, top DUI defense attorneys, such as LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C., employ a variety of techniques and strategies to defend their clients against charges of Driving Under the Influence (DUI) or Operating While Intoxicated (OWI). These techniques can be broadly categorized into challenging the traffic stop’s legality, the evidence’s reliability, and procedural errors.

One common defense strategy is to question the legality of the initial traffic stop. Attorneys might argue that the police officer lacked probable cause to pull over the driver in the first place. If the defense can prove that the stop was unjustified or based on a pretext, any evidence obtained during that stop might be considered inadmissible in court.

Another frequent approach is challenging the reliability of sobriety tests and equipment. This can include questioning the accuracy and calibration of the Intoxilyzer 9000 breathalyzer or the administration and interpretation of field sobriety tests. For instance, certain medical conditions, medications, or even dietary habits can impact breathalyzer results. A skilled attorney may also call into question the training and competence of the officer administering the tests, suggesting that the results are unreliable.

In addition, the defense might scrutinize the chain of custody of blood samples, ensuring they were handled and tested properly. Any irregularities can cast doubt on the validity of the test results.

Furthermore, defense attorneys often evaluate the behavior and condition of the accused at the time of the arrest. For example, they might present evidence or witnesses to show that the defendant’s alleged impairment was due to fatigue, illness, or other factors unrelated to alcohol or drug consumption.

Lastly, attorneys might negotiate with prosecutors for a plea deal, especially if it’s a first-time offense or if there’s a chance the charges won’t hold up in court. Such deals might involve reduced charges, such as Reckless or Careless Driving, alternatives to jail, or diversion programs that, if completed successfully, might result in the dismissal of the charges.

In essence, the best DUI defense attorneys in Wayne County, Michigan, utilize a combination of legal knowledge, investigative skills, and negotiation tactics to provide the best possible defense for their clients. As with all legal matters, the specific strategies employed depend on the unique circumstances of each case. If you call LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. for a free consultation, an experienced attorney will talk with you, answer your questions, and work with you to develop a winning strategy.

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Seek Dismissal or Reduction of DUI Charges and Avoid Jail with a  Skilled, Savvy Wayne County DUI Defense Attorney

The punishment for a DUI in Wayne County, Michigan, will depend on a few factors. The number of DUI offenses on your record, the blood alcohol content in your system, and your compliance or perhaps non-compliance during an arrest will all determine the penalty of a potential DUI conviction. DUI charges are taken seriously by the state of Michigan, which is why you need experienced and aggressive attorneys to fight for your freedom. Depending on the number of priors, the fine, driver’s license sanctions, potential years of probation, and possible incarceration can increase. Generally, the potential penalties are as follows:

  • DUI 1st Offense – 93 days jail and two years of probation
  • DUI 2nd Offense – 1 year jail and two years of probation
  • DUI 3rd Offense – Five (5) years in prison and five years of probation
  • DUI High BAC – 180 days jail and two years probation
  • DUI Minor (Under 21 years old) – 93 days jail and two years of probation
  • OWID – 93 days jail and two years of probation

LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. is a Michigan-based criminal defense law firm founded in 1995 that has since helped thousands of clients facing DUI charges, often resulting in lessened sentences or dropped charges altogether. We utilize a unique team approach that consistently results in unparalleled and extraordinary results for our clients.

Cities and Townships in Wayne County

Wayne County, Michigan, is the most populous county in the state and includes Detroit. Here’s a list of cities, villages, and townships within Wayne County where LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C.’s defense attorneys routinely appear in court. DUI charges can be prosecuted by state prosecutors with the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office or local municipal and city attorneys:

  • Allen Park
  • Belleville
  • Brownstown Township
  • Canton Township
  • Dearborn
  • Dearborn Heights
  • Detroit
  • Ecorse
  • Flat Rock
  • Garden City
  • Gibraltar
  • Grosse Ile Township
  • Grosse Pointe
  • Grosse Pointe Farms
  • Grosse Pointe Park
  • Grosse Pointe Shores
  • Grosse Pointe Woods
  • Hamtramck
  • Harper Woods
  • Highland Park
  • Inkster
  • Lincoln Park
  • Livonia
  • Melvindale
  • Northville
  • Plymouth
  • River Rouge
  • Riverview
  • Rockwood
  • Romulus
  • Southgate
  • Taylor
  • Trenton
  • Wayne
  • Westland
  • Woodhaven
  • Wyandotte
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How can an experienced Wayne County DUI attorney help me?

The attorneys at LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. have decades of experience representing clients facing felony and misdemeanor DUI charges in Wayne County, Michigan, and know how to walk you through what is a vulnerable and scary situation for most people. We review the night of the arrest with our clients to ensure the police are not guilty of wrongdoing. If the police do not follow proper protocols, a defense lawyer can seek dismissal of the charges. Defenses in DUI cases can be scientific, medical, constitutional, factual, or legal. Regretfully, many court-appointed attorneys, general practice lawyers, and even experienced defense attorneys often do not explore these avenues with their clients. An attorney with years of experience and a reputation for winning, as well as a rapport built with the judges and personnel in the Wayne County court system, will have a greater chance of negotiating a lesser charge, a reduced sentence, or even an outright dismissal of all charges for their client.

The attorneys at LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. are ready to protect you from misdemeanor or felony DUI charges. If you call us, we will take the time to talk with you, answer your questions, and address your concerns. Together, we will develop a winning strategy.

Call us today at (248) 263-6800 for a free consultation or complete an online Request for Assistance Form. We will contact you promptly and find a way to help you.

We will find a way to help you and, most importantly,
we are not afraid to win!

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