When facing a North Carolina DWI Charge, a good Attorney will explore all options when evaluation a case. As a Raleigh DWI Attorney and Raleigh DUI Attorney, I try to evaluate each case and find as many potential Defense their are in which to have a trial on. There are many trial tactics which can (and should be) explored whenever possible. One such tactic is forcing the State to present their case.
You see, whenever a Defendant pleads guilty, the State's burden to prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, each and every one of the elements of the crime charged is lifted. In the case of a North Carolina DWI Case, they do not have to prove the Defendant was driving, that that driving took place on a North Carolina Street, Highway, or Public Vehicular Area (basically parking lots) and that the Driver had a blood/alcohol level of .08 or above or that the Driver was 'Appreciably Impaired.' By pleading guilty, the Defendant has admitted each of these as true and the State can proceed directly to North Carolina DWI Sentencing.
But, by forcing the State to prove their case (which is a Constitutional guarantee under the 5th and 6th Amendments) the State must basically 'do their job.' If the State is unable to prove each element of the crime of North Carolina Driving While Intoxicated, then the case should be dismissed or the Defendant found not guilty. Recently, I had called a DWI case for trial in which one of the Arresting Police Officers was not available. The State asked for a continuance in order to get their witness in, and the Judge granted it, but stated that the State would not get another continuance. Well, when the new court date came up, one of the Police Officer's was not available and the Judge denied State's motion to continue. The State was forced to dismiss the charges against my client. Now, let me be very clear, this is a VERY UNCOMMON occurrence and not one that should be anticipated in any case, especially North Carolina DWI Cases, but as this practicing Raleigh DWI Attorney knows, it's always best to keep all options OPEN whenever possible. I could have very easily just continued the case myself, both the time before and this time, and plead out my client or run the risk of a guilty verdict at trial. But, since I was prepared to go to trial both times, I called it for trial both times and forced the State to produce their witnesses against my client.
When facing a North Carolina DWI Arrest or any other criminal matter, it is best to speak with a local DWI/criminal defense attorney about your case and what options they can pursue for you.
Disclaimer - Information and advice offered in this article is for informational and educational purposes only and is specific to North Carolina law. The viewing, receipt and/or exchange of information from this article does not constitute an Attorney-Client Relationship. For assistance regarding your particular legal question speak with an Attorney practicing in the field from which your questions derives.