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Defenses to DUI in Louisiana

As mentioned earlier, the statute proscribes affirmative defenses to intoxication due to non controlled substances. It is an affirmative defense that the label on the container of the prescription drug or the manufacturer’s package of the drug does not contain a warning against combining the medication with alcohol and it is also an affirmative defense that the operator did not knowingly consume excessive quantities of the drug or drugs which substantially exceed the dosage prescribed by a physician or the recommended dosage from the manufacturer.

It is also possible to challenge a chemical test and its results. The state has the burden of proof that all regulations were followed and strictly adhered to in every way. For example, the state has the burden of showing that the breath test machine was unlicensed, expired, or was administered by a person unlicensed to do so. When the state fails to meet its burden, any evidence from the test would be inadmissible, thus forming a strong defense.

Showing that the arresting police officer performed an illegal arrest can also be a defense. As mentioned before, the officer must have a reasonable suspicion that a person is driving while intoxicated and must have probable cause to make an arrest. If either a reasonable suspicion or probable cause did not exist, a defense can be made that the arrest was an illegal seizure, thus violating the person’s constitutional rights.


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