Informant Identification Impacts DUI Cases
Courts give more credence to witnesses and informants who identify themselves than to anonymous tipsters. Your Orange County DUI defense attorney would like you to know about this important legal concept. People who identify themselves are more likely to be truthful so their testimony is often more valuable. In addition, giving their names would open them up to legal penalties if they lied. Consider these case examples from around the nation:
- Arkansas: A tipster witnessed criminal activity and gave his name and address. The observations were also confirmed by the police and the resulting detention of a defendant was upheld.
- Kansas: An informant supplied her name and address when describing a suspicious car. Arrest of the suspect was upheld because the citizen provided her identity.
- Missouri: A witness reported an SUV driving erratically. The report was made face to face with a police officer, resulting in an arrest. The police action held up in court as lawful.
- Florida: A restaurant manager called 911 and reported a suspected DUI. A responding officer took down details about the car, including the plate number. Since the caller also provided her name, address and location, the subsequent stop that the officer made was upheld.
- Massachusetts: A similar scenario as the above took place when a citizen identified himself and the account was found credible in a court of law.
Identification Is Not a Guarantee of Validity
Not all cases are cut and dried. For instance, a DUI stop in Utah was thrown out when a woman had a fight with her boyfriend and reported that he had been drinking before driving away. In this case, the arrest was not upheld in part because she did not explicitly say in her report that her boyfriend was intoxicated, nor did she let the officer know how much alcohol he consumed.
It takes an experienced lawyer to know how to argue cases involving informants. If you’re unsure of the validity of the accounts in your DUI case, or if you would just like a free consultation with Orange County DUI defense attorneys, call Coffey & Coffey today at (800) 706-7888.