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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
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    13,916

    Default Can You be Ticketed if an Officer Doesn't See You Physically Behind the Wheel

    If a police officer doesn't see you physically behind the wheel of a vehicle, can the officer still issue you a traffic citation?

    Two people were in a single car accident. When the police arrived, one of the people said that he was driving. The other appeared intoxicated, so the officer demanded sobriety tests. The other person was not cooperative, and ended up being arrested and charged with impaired driving.

    How can he be charged if the officer didn't see him drive the car and if there's another person who says that he was the actual driver?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    Posts
    98,830

    Default Re: Can You be Ticketed if an Officer Doesn't See You Physically Behind the Wheel

    You can be charged with a traffic violation or traffic offense even if you are not seen behind the wheel -- but to be convicted of the crime of impaired driving, the prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you were the driver. There could also be issues of proof as to whether you became intoxicated before or after the accident.

    If there is no evidence that the person charged with impaired driving was behind the wheel, this should be an easy case for dismissal. However, there often is some evidence, such as there being a witness to the accident who identified the driver. The person charged with DUI should consult a criminal defense lawyer for a full review of the police allegations and evidence.

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