Charges for Intoxicated Or Impaired Due to Alcohol, Drugs or Medications

At the ABDO LAW Firm, we know how to defend you in any scenario where you are charged with operating a vehicle while intoxicated or impaired due to alcohol or drugs. In Michigan "Operating While Intoxicated" (OWI) means operating a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol to a degree that renders one unable to safely drive a vehicle. It is falsely believed that you cannot be charged with drunk driving unless your breath test is over the legal limit. A charge of OWI or impaired driving may be supported in a number of ways.

Per Se Cases, Intoxication Irrelevant: Super Drunk, OWI, OWPD, Zero Tolerance

In Michigan, you can be convicted of a drinking and driving offense, regardless of your intoxication or impairment, if your blood alcohol content (BAC) is at the statutory limit or if you test positive for schedule 1 controlled substance. The following offenses are classified as "per se" or presumed intoxicated:

  • Super drunk, .17% or greater
  • OWI, operating while intoxicated, .08% but less than .17%
  • OWPD, operate with the presence of drugs
  • Zero tolerance, under age 21, .02% but less than .08%

Sobriety is not a defense in a "per se" Michigan drinking and driving prosecution.

The Impaired or Intoxicated Conduct Case
BAC Below .08% Does Not Create a Presumption of Intoxication

The police officer may testify as a person's conduct which may provide a basis for a conviction of operating while intoxicated or impaired regardless of the chemical test result. The police officer may testify as to a person's driving skills, slurred speech, instability, smell of alcohol and inability to perform field sobriety tests. The police may also introduce the chemical test result as evidence of alcohol consumption even though a result below .08% does not create a presumption of intoxication!

Operating While Intoxicated Due to Prescribed Medications

You may also be charged with operating while intoxicated or impaired if you have taken prescribed medications, alone or combined with alcohol. The mere presence of medications would not be sufficient for a conviction. Again, the conduct of the driver would need to indicate impairment or intoxication. Our Clinton Township lawyers can defend you under any scenario in if you are charged with operating while intoxicated (OWI) or impaired (OWVI) due to alcohol, marijuana or drugs.

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