California Criminal Defense Lawyers – Motion to Suppress Evidence
A California Criminal Defense Lawyer who is experienced in DUI and DWI defense typically use pretrial motions as part of a strategic effort to improve the client’s prospects in court. Motion to suppress evidence is a formal legal document that asks the court to take a particular action. Motions to suppress evidence, also called motions in limine, are among the most common motions introduced in drinking and driving cases. The California Criminal Defense Lawyers at The Kavinoky Law Firm are skilled and have the experience needed to use pretrial motions to the accused motorist’s best advantage in a California DUI case.
Suppression motions in drunk driving cases typically question whether the arresting officer had probable cause to make a traffic stop or an arrest, the results of the chemical tests administered to determine blood alcohol content (BAC), or both.
Motions to suppress evidence in California that are centered on whether or not the arresting officer had probable cause to make a traffic stop typically focus on whether or not the officer had a reasonable belief that a crime was committed. If the motion to suppress is successful, evidence obtained because of an unlawful detention, arrest, or search are subject to being excluded at trial.
Any California Vehicle Code violation can establish probable cause for a traffic stop; however, the violation must occur in the officer’s presence. Police cannot stop a car just to determine whether the driver can produce a valid license and registration. Officers also cannot stop a vehicle in anticipation of finding a vehicle code violation or other contraband, such as drugs, when no actual probable cause was present before the stop.
In some California DUI cases, a driving under the influence arrest can stem from an anonymous tip made by a third party. Police can only make an arrest for DUI / DWI after an anonymous tip if an officer witnesses behavior that provides a reasonable suspicion that the driver is intoxicated. If the traffic stop was based solely on a third-party tip, the arrest was invalid, and any evidence gathered must be excluded.
Motions to suppress the results of chemical tests typically center on whether the test was conducted correctly. If the strict requirements governing the administration of chemical tests in California weren’t followed, the evidence may be suppressed. If this evidence is excluded, additional information gathered as a result of the test also would be suppressed, such as observations of signs and symptoms of intoxication. A motion to suppress can be brought on several different grounds.
The evidence that prosecutors seek to introduce in California DUI / DWI cases isn’t automatically admissible – it must meet strict legal requirements to be used at trial. A California defense lawyer who focuses on drunk driving cases will use proven strategies to challenge evidence in a drunk driving case and improve an accused motorist’s prospects at trial.