DUI attorneys understand that not all arrests for driving under the influence are clear-cut. In fact, in Colorado, you can be arrested for a DUI before a chemical test determines your blood alcohol content (BAC), or the presence of marijuana or other drugs. It’s important to understand your legal rights under the DUI law in the event that you are pulled over. Remember that you have the legal right to call a Denver area DUI lawyer after having been arrested.
Right to Take a Preliminary Test
As your defense lawyer can advise you, you have the legal right under Colorado law to take a preliminary breath test before you are arrested. If you haven’t been drinking or using drugs, this test will work in your favor. Police officers use the preliminary breath test to establish probable cause for an arrest. If the breath test does not reveal the presence of recreational substances, the officer should not arrest you for a DUI offense. The police officer should inform you about the preliminary test, and he or she should also inform you that you have the right to refuse if it you wish.
Right to Refuse a Chemical Test
If the police officer determines that he or she has probable cause for an arrest, either with a preliminary test or by observing your behavior, you can be arrested for a DUI offense. Your DUI attorney can inform you of Colorado’s Express Consent law. This law presumes that all drivers on Colorado roadways have already given their consent to take a chemical test when requested to do so by a police officer after the arrest. The test must be administered within two hours. If you refuse to take a chemical test, you will face automatic penalties and your criminal lawyer may have a more difficult time building a case in your defense. However, under most circumstances, you can choose which type of test you wish to take. For example, you could choose to take a breath or blood test. Once you select your preferred testing method, however, you usually are not allowed to change your mind and choose a different method.