The DWI Process in Westchester County
Westchester County DWI Lawyer Explains What to Expect
The Law Offices of Robert Schuster is highly familiar with the criminal
process. Attorney Robert Schuster has handled
hundreds of DWI cases and has
never lost a DWI trial. Additionally, Attorney Schuster is recognized by the NAFDD as one of
the top 100 DWI attorneys in the state of New York. Speak with a
Westchester County DWI attorney as soon as possible to discuss your case and learn what to expect.
Our firm can provide the guidance and the solid defense that you need
when you are facing charges of driving while intoxicated.
Investigation and Arrest
The police officer notices erratic driving or other evidence that a driver
is drunk, or pulls the driver over for speeding or another traffic violation.
While speaking with the driver, he or she notices indicators of intoxication,
such as bloodshot eyes, slurred speech or the smell of alcohol. The officer
normally requests the driver to exit the vehicle in order to perform a
series of standardized
field sobriety tests to determine whether the suspect is ability impaired. If the driver fails
the test or if the officer has other grounds to believe that the suspect
is guilty of driving while intoxicated, the officer makes an arrest. Next,
the driver is requested to submit to chemical testing such as a breath
or blood test. The driver may refuse the test, though this will lead to
an automatic suspension under New York's implied consent law.
This is the first appearance the DWI suspect will make in the courtroom.
The judge reads the suspect's rights and reads the charges in the
case, as well as inquiring as to whether the defendant chooses to plead
guilty or not guilty. Under certain circumstances, such as if the defendant
refused chemical testing, the court will impose a pre-conviction of driving
privileges, as well as scheduling a
refusal hearing at which the defendant may choose to contest the license suspension.
Westchester criminal defense lawyer can represent you in your DMV hearing to contest the grounds for an automatic
suspension of your driver's license. The hearing is not conducted
in criminal court, but it is based on the same evidence that the prosecutor
will use against you; therefore, it provides your lawyer with a valuable
opportunity to learn about the case in order to better prepare your defense.
Additionally, you may request a restricted license at a
hardship hearing based on evidence that a license suspension would subject you to
The next step in the criminal case is to appear at the pre-trial conference,
which is essentially a courtroom hearing at which your defense lawyer
and the prosecutor will meet before the judge to discuss the case and
a possible plea bargain. In addition to the pre-trial conference, your
case may involve a suppression hearing, which is the venue at which your
lawyer would file a motion to suppress evidence in the case based on the
fact that your rights were violated during the investigation, such as
by an unlawful traffic stop. Many cases are resolved at this stage, whether
through a plea bargain or by a dismissal of the charges.
Should the case proceed further, it will go to a full trial at which the
evidence and arguments of both sides will be heard by a jury. Your defense
lawyer will have the opportunity to introduce evidence and witnesses in
your favor, as well as to cross examine the testimony of the prosecutor's
witnesses and to challenge the evidence against you. If you are convicted,
the judge will deliver a sentence which may include
penalties such as fines, time in jail or prison, probation and participation in
a Drunk Driving Program or Victim Impact Panel. Your lawyer can still
advocate on your behalf at this point in pursuit of a lighter sentence.
Hire a Westchester DWI Lawyer Now
The key to success in
DWI defense is to hire a lawyer as early as possible after your arrest to speak on
your behalf in court and to guide you through the entire process. With
an attorney on your side who has been recognized by the American Institute
of DWI Attorneys as a Top 10 DWI Lawyer in New York, you can take a confident
approach to your case.
Contact The Law Offices of Robert Schuster now for an initial consultation with a Westchester DWI lawyer over the
phone to discuss the circumstances of your arrest and to learn more about
your legal options.