DUI - Pre-Trial Motions
Pre-trial motions are made after the arraignment and before the criminal case goes to trial.
The motions are used by prosecutors and defense alike who usually appear before a criminal court judge to present their motions. Pre-trial motions are used to request things such as certain specific pieces of evidence be kept out of the trial and that certain people cannot or must not testify.
Pre-trail motion hearings are usually relatively short and consist of the judge, the prosecutor and the defense. The motion will be heard and both the prosecutor and defense will have a chance to argue their case.
Upon hearing the motion the judge will then grant (sustain) the motion or deny the motion.
Common pre-trial motions include:
- Motions to preserve evidence
- Motions to suppress/exclude evidence
- Motions to reduce the charge
An example pre-trial defense motion in DUI cases is a motion where the defense argues that the Breathalyzer or chemical test result evidence should be suppressed/excluded because the correct testing procedure used by the arresting officer was not followed and the procedure was flawed.
Common pre-trial defense motions relating to DUI include:
- Motions to suppress/exclude preliminary alcohol screening (PAS) evidence
- Motions to suppress/exclude the results and observations of (FST's) field sobriety tests
- Motions to suppress/exclude the arresting officers statements or testimony of presumed guilt
- Motions to suppress/exclude evidence based on an unlawful police stop
- Motions to strike prior DUI convictions
- Motions to suppress/exclude a defendants statement or admission of guilt
- Motions to appoint and introduce expert witnesses in the form of chemical tests and forensics
- Motions to suppress/exclude chemical test refusal evidence
Typically motions involve three stages. A notice of motion which can either be in writing or requested orally. The hearing of the motion where prosecutor and defense counsel argue the motion and the judges ruling on the motion which can either be granted or denied.