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Criminal defense a necessity in drunk driving cases

A recent study suggests more people than originally thought would consider driving a vehicle while intoxicated. Alberta residents may be shocked to hear that one in five Albertans have considered driving drunk at some point in their lives. From a criminal defense perspective, this brings up interesting questions about the nuances of the law as it pertains to driving under the influence. 

A Postmedia poll suggests that some 20 percent of the Albertan population would consider driving drunk, but it is important to note that most polled individuals said they would only do so on a quiet road and for a short distance. For many people charged with drunk driving, this can make a big difference if a charge goes to trial. The way alcohol is metabolized by the body means the definition of driving drunk is up for a degree of interpretation. 

For example, in the case of people who would only drive short distances, the duration of time between consumption of alcohol and measurable intoxicated effects can vary. In some cases, it has been proven in court that an individual was not actually drunk at the time of an arrest, but due to the variance in time, by the time a blood test was taken that individual measured above the legal limit. These sorts of distinctions are critical in developing a criminal defense case. 

Ultimately, drunk driving is a bad decision and not one anyone would condone. However, Alberta residents are aware that all manner of extenuating circumstances can influence judgment and inform decisions. Seeking criminal defense representation if one is faced with a drunk driving charge can be a good first step toward seeing those charges reduced or possibly even eliminated altogether. 

Source: Calgary Sun, "One in five Albertans would consider driving drunk: Mainstreet poll", Juris Graney, Nov. 19, 2016

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