Suppressing Evidence in a DUI Case
If you are being charged with driving under the influence, you may be unsure of how to proceed. To obtain the best outcome in your case, you should seek the legal advice of an experienced Chicago DUI lawyer. A skilled lawyer will evaluate your case and help you understand all of your legal options. At O’Meara Law, we will immediately begin developing a strong defense to allegations being made against you.
One of our primary defense strategies will be carefully evaluating all evidence against you. If it was obtained illegally or does not comply with legal requirements, we will work to have it suppressed. When determining whether information should be admitted in a criminal case, the court often looks at how it was obtained. It may have been stolen from your property, or perhaps it was taken during an illegal vehicle search. Chicago DUI lawyer Michael O’Meara knows how to identify unlawfully obtained evidence. With over 20 years of experience in the courtroom, he will work tirelessly to get your charges thrown out.
To find out how you can challenge the evidence against you, call 312-909-0706 today.
When Evidence Can be Suppressed in a DUI Case
Contrary to popular belief, police do not need a warrant to search your home or vehicle. In order to pull you over, reasonable suspicion, or the belief that a crime is being committed based on training and past experiences, is needed. From there, if they find probable cause, or facts or circumstances that lead them to believe that a crime is being committed, they may conduct a vehicle search without a warrant. This type of search may also occur if you have given consent, or after you have already been arrested. However, there are many situations in which warrantless search and seizures are not justified.
In many cases, police conduct spontaneous searches with no evidence of a crime. When your vehicle is ransacked without probable cause, it may be possible to eliminate the evidence against you. For example, imagine that you are pulled over by an officer. They tell you that they saw you swerving and proceed to ask you several questions. You choose to remain silent, and as a result, the police pull you from your car and begin to search your vehicle. In this case, since the search was highly illegal and not based on any real indication of illicit activity, the evidence obtained might be suppressed in court.
Even when police have a warrant, a search and seizure may not be justified. In many cases, there is not probable cause for the issuance of a warrant. In order to gain permission to search someone’s private property, an officer must present tangible evidence, or at least have sufficient reasoning to suspect that a crime is taking place. It might also be the case that the evidence seized and the individuals searched were not specifically listed on the warrant. This can be a violation of Fourth Amendment protections.
How to Suppress Evidence in a DUI Case
You must submit a Motion to Suppress Evidence Illegally Seized to eliminate evidence in Illinois. According to the Illinois General Assembly, this motion can also be used to reclaim property that was taken, unless it qualifies as contraband. This documentation must include facts that support the idea that the search and seizure were unlawful. If you decide to take this action, the burden of proof falls on you to prove that it was unlawfully taken. Once the judge receives all documentation, they will hold a suppression hearing to determine the validity of the claim. From there, your case may either proceed or be dismissed.
State law notes that these motions should be submitted before a trial begins. However, there are circumstances that may warrant a motion being filed later in the process. Perhaps police misconduct was only uncovered after the completion of an independent investigation.
Attorney Michael O’Meara Can Protect Your Freedom
Under the United States Constitution, all citizens have the right to be spared from unnecessary and invasive searches and seizures. Sadly, privacy is often violated, and people end up with criminal charges that are based on illegally obtained evidence. If you believe that you are being treated unfairly by the justice system, you must seek legal representation immediately. Our Chicago DUI lawyers at O’Meara Law will craft an effective defense strategy that proves your innocence.
To find out how you can avoid a criminal record, or if you have questions about your case, call 312-909-0706 now.