I am experienced Maryland criminal defense attorney who has counseled hundreds of criminal defendants and DUI suspects charged with fleeing the seen of an accident, Whether the driver has run into a tree and ditched his car, or ran someone over and sped off, experience shows that 90% of the time the responsible driver flees the scene because he is impaired by alcohol or drugs.
It is very easy for the police to prove a vehicle was in an accident. Often there are paint, blood or hair follicles that can be matched to the object or person hit. In cases where the vehicle is not ditched, police are often able to track down enough evidence to make a case against the owner/ driver. Sometimes the investigation takes days or weeks.
In these instances, however, it is almost impossible to prove the operator of the vehicle was impaired. This is because in order to convict a person of drunk driving, the police need to establish that the person was 1) behind the wheel, 2) had alcohol or drugs in his system, and 3) was above the Maryland legal limit of .08 or otherwise impaired.
In order to prove these elements for DUI, the police need to perform field sobriety tests and offer a breath test. The problem with delaying these tests is that if positive, it is impossible for the prosecution to establish WHEN the alcohol or drugs were ingested. Hence, if the police can’t put a person behind the wheel, the prosecution will fail.
For more information on DUI’s in Maryland, please contact me for a complimentary consultation.