Should I fight an MIP charge?

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Should I fight an MIP charge?

My girlfriend was pulled over while driving my car with me in it. She was asked to step out of the vehicle and blew a .055 as a minor and was thus arrested and charged with a DUI. The officer then had me step out of the passenger seat and told me to blow but I declined, which is my right (is it not?). The officer said my eyes were blood shot (i have allergies) and he said he could smell alcohol on my breath. I told him I hadn’t drank. There was no alcohol in the car and the reason my girlfriend was driving was because my license was suspended from a previous MIP. Do I have a case?

Asked on June 22, 2012 under Criminal Law, Washington

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

It really depends on the credibility of all of the witnesses.... the two main ones being yourself and the officer.  Without knowing more about the officer, it will be difficult for anyone to give you a complete answer-- but, if the officer has a general rep for not being strait forward (i.e. stretching the facts), then you will have a better chance at fighting this charge.  Many people who show up for jury duty tend to believe officers.  If you have a pristine officer on the stand, you'll have a hard timing beating this charge.  To contest the charges you may have to testify, which could result in the disclosure of many uncomforable facts-- including your prior conviction.  Just because you don't agree with the officer will not be enough to effectively fight these charges-- you need someone who has had experience handling this officer so that he can punch holes in his testimony.   


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