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Implied Consent

Paul D. Cramm – Implied Consent – Should You Refuse the Intoxilyzer Test?

Sometime or another, we’ve all heard someone say, “If you’re stopped for a DUI, don’t blow and they can’t convict you.” Can it possibly be that easy to get around the whole drunk driving law enforcement system?

There’s no question that the Intoxilyzer blood alcohol test results will usually be the strongest evidence against you in a DUI case. Without that evidence, what can the prosecutor do?

Contact my office in Overland Park for better advice from a lawyer about the defense of drunk driving charges. Kansas has what’s known as a dual standard for DUI prosecution – while a BAC reading of 0.08 will normally prove the prosecution’s DUI case against you, it’s not necessary. The alternative standard allows for reliance on “other evidence” such as you appearance, demeanor, odor of alcohol, actual driving behavior and performance on Standardized Field Sobriety Tests to show that you were incapable of safely operating your vehicle at the time of the stop. If you refuse a breathalyzer but submit to a field sobriety test that shows you staggering all over a highway shoulder – on video, no less – or if your driving was erratic and your speech slurred, and you reek of alcohol on top of it, it may be easy for the prosecutor to prove your guilt even without an Intoxilyzer Breath Test result.

Another consideration is the effect on your driver’s license. If you refuse the breath alcohol test, you most certainly will have violated the implied consent law, which means that you’re facing a driver’s license suspension. By accepting your driver’s license and driving on the public roadways of the state of Kansas, it is “implied” that you will consent to any ‘reasonably requested’ test of breath or blood for alcohol or drugs.  If your priority is to avoid a criminal conviction, then refusal of the breath test may be your best strategy, particularly if you have enough sense at the moment to provide no other evidence of any kind. No field sobriety test, no statements to the police, no nothing. Just bear in mind that refusal of the breath test may have far more severe implications with regard to your driver’s license.

Please keep in mind that effective July 1, 2012, it is now a CRIME in Kansas to refuse the Intoxilyzer test – and the penalties are identical to the penalties for conviction of the underlying DUI.  However, criminalization of refusal only applies to drivers with at least one prior alcohol related driving occurrence.  In other words, if you already have a prior DUI, refusing the Intoxilyzer Test in Kansas will not help you avoid criminal conviction or penalties.

Watch this video to learn how Paul Cramm defends DUI and DWI defense and to see why you need his representation in your Kansas City Drunk Driving case.

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