What Police Look for to Identify Drunk Drivers

The holidays are upon us, and with parties and celebrations back-to-back, police are out in force to keep the roads safe. Local law enforcement is trained to identify behaviors that may indicate a driver is under the influence. Since the officer's testimony will be one of the main pieces of evidence against someone being charged with a DUI, an experienced DUI criminal defense attorney can cause jurors to question the testimony of the driving observations made before being pulled over. If you are facing charges of driving under the influence, please contact a reputable and experienced DUI attorney to protect your future.

Signs That Trigger Police to Pull Someone Over

An officer's testimony in a DUI trial will focus on the speed, if the driver could stay in the lanes, and any other traffic violations, like going through a stop sign or doing other things that made the roadway unsafe. Any of these elements can be very damaging, and a combination of these indicators can be convincing. An excellent defense lawyer will argue every point and counter the evidence that the behaviors were erratic or indicative of someone under the influence.

Any driver who has been in front of a patrol car has experienced the racing heart and the constant checking of the mirror, and the result is often more mistakes than one would typically make. The mere presence of a police car behind you can cause drivers to swerve, adjust speed and appear inconsistent in driving behavior. Anything that affects a driver’s ability to concentrate affects their driving behavior, and many begin to drive poorly when looking into a mirror flashing with blue lights.

There are often details of each unique situation that may have caused a swerve that police mistake as the inability to drive in the lines. A DUI criminal defense attorney knows what questions to ask and how to fight evidence against the accused driver.

Excessively Slow or Fast Speeds

Law enforcement will identify speeding or excessively slow driving as possible indications of someone being under the influence. Since drugs and alcohol affect the brain and response connection, these are signs to law enforcement because they represent some disconnect between knowing the speed limit and not adhering to the posted speed. One of the most common defenses your attorney will present is that driving at a steady speed is nearly impossible without cruise control. Speed almost always fluctuates through a drive. Additionally, many people get nervous and speed up or slow down when they see an officer in their rearview mirror.


Even brand-new cars off a lot have difficulty driving straight. As road conditions vary from street to street, and potholes are riddled throughout, most cars pull to one side or another, and this is a solid defense against swerving or weaving in and out of lanes. An excellent attorney will call on expert witnesses of their own and even use mechanics to confirm the car has issues that may cause it to pull in one direction or another. Once under oath, police often admit that vehicles don't always drive perfectly straight, so that swerving may result from the car's condition and not the drivers.

Countering Professional Law Enforcement Testimony

Once you have a dedicated defense lawyer on your side, they will question the legal authorities involved in your arrest. Cross-examining an officer requires a confident and relentless attorney who won't back down. Your attorney will likely challenge the officer's judgment of the driving behavior until they admit it was either posing a danger and it was allowed or that the driving did not pose an immediate threat (not convincing enough to get off the road immediately). In either case, how an officer handles a driver they suspect is under the influence can sway jurors.

San Diego County courts have an incredibly low tolerance for drunk driving. Many people who choose not to have private legal representation by their side regret it later when they receive convictions and harsh sentences. It is free to get a consultation call with a local defense lawyer. In most cases, enough details can be gathered to help the attorney build evidence to counter the prosecutions against the accused. If you find yourself facing DUI criminal charges, no matter what day or time, call to speak to an attorney today to protect your future. The Law Offices of Joni Eisenstein have helped hundreds of clients fight DUI charges and get favorable outcomes. There is no better defense attorney in San Diego. Do not leave a DUI's outcome to chance and ensure the highest likelihood of dismissed or reduced charges by acquiring an excellent private criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.

If you are on the fence about hiring a defense attorney, stop thinking about it, and do it now

Hiring a criminal defense attorney like Joni Eisenstein can help you go from a place of uncertainty to freedom.