Interviewer: Besides the stop, what other main areas do you attack in a case? Let’s talk about those.
When Will You Be Read Your Miranda Rights?
Brian Sloan: Besides issues concerning the stop, people do have constitutional rights. Although the law says that you do not have to be read Miranda rights, DUI is a special area of the law. I may go so far as to say in all other cases, a person does not have to be read the Miranda rights as long as they’re not asked questions. If someone is read their Miranda rights, the officers can ignore their request for an attorney as long as they don’t ask questions.
You Are Entitled to an Attorney During a DUI Investigation
DUI is the exception. You cannot ignore someone requesting an attorney in a DUI case. This is an issue totally separate from whether someone was truly drunk or whether someone was truly driving, this is a violation of a right, the constitutional right under the Fifth and Sixth Amendments as well as the Arizona Constitution, a right to counsel.
With DUI cases, because the evidence is only available for a limited amount of time, if someone truly is drunk or if someone truly is sober it is really only going to be available at that moment. People need to be able to have access to an attorney so that they can prove their innocence.
Your Attorney Can Document Evidence to Use in your Defense While You Are Being Questioned By the Police
In a DUI case, if someone says, “This machine is showing that I’m three times the legal limit. I am not drunk. I am sober. I am not staggering. I’m not falling down. I’m not doing all these things the officer’s saying,” that’s really only going to be proven in a very limited range of time.
A person needs to have access to an attorney, to contact that attorney and be able to have that attorney come down to the scene to videotape the person to show that they truly don’t have bloodshot watery eyes. The attorney can document they don’t have an odor of alcohol and record that they don’t have slurred speech. These are issues that are separate from whether a blood test result or a breath test result actually shows someone who’s above the legal limit. This is an issue separate from whether someone is really driving.
In Arizona, the Police Cannot Ignore or Decline Your Request for an Attorney
Interviewer: Do you encounter many clients that said to the police, “I want an attorney,” and the police replied, “No,” or they just ignored them?
Brian Sloan: It depends on the training of the police officer and depends on how experienced the police officer is. Because DUI is a separate area of the law and most police officers maybe think, “Well, they asked for an attorney but I don’t really have to do that because I’m not going to ask them questions.” They don’t realize that DUIs are the exception.