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What happens during and after an OUI arrest?

Drunk driving offenses are treated very seriously under Connecticut law. While an operating under the influence conviction can mean criminal penalties and the driver losing his or her driver's license, the actual arrest procedures can surprise many.

Under Connecticut law the legal blood-alcohol limit for adults aged 21 or over is .08. For those under the legal drinking age, this drops to .02. If you are stopped by police and found to have a blood-alcohol level exceeding the legal limit, you will be immediately arrested by the officer.

During the arrest, the officer will read you your rights — also known as being Mirandized — put you in the police car and take you to the local police station. Once there, the police will complete the necessary paperwork while you are in a locked cell. You will be held there pending bail. After you are bailed out, the courts will notify you of your court date and the formal charges.

It is important to get an attorney as soon as you are arrested on suspicion of operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Some people may think that this is a fairly common charge and one they can handle in court by themselves, but this is not a good idea.

An attorney is better prepared to challenge the evidence, such as whether there was cause for the traffic stop or whether the Breathalyzer was properly calibrated before the test. Having an attorney guide you through the process also helps ensure that you are well informed on the consequences of a plea deal or alternative sentencing options that may be available.

Source: Department of Motor Vehicles, "Connecticut's Drunk Driving Law - OUI" accessed Mar. 04, 2015

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