These are probably the most common types of cases that Canadians may find themselves charged with.
The potential consequences are serious: loss of license, increased cost of insurance, criminal record, etcâ¦
If, in addition, the impaired driving resulted in injury or death, a minimum sentence of jail may be required by the Criminal Code.
In Alberta, once you are charged with this type of offence, you will likely lose your licence until after the expiry of a sentence or after you have gone to trial and found not guilty.
Changes to the Criminal code have made fighting these charges difficult because they have become very technical. A trial involving a constitutional challenge to the admissibility of certificate evidence usually takes at least a full day.
These charges are often trigged by a CHECKSTOP or a the observations of unusual driving.
The case against a person consists usually of breath or blood samples that have been analyzed by a machine that provides the court with the amount of alcohol on the accused personâs blood. This analysis results in a Certificate being prepared that shows scientifically the percentage of alcohol in the blood.
It is the job of the lawyer of a person accused of these charges to find a legal challenge to the admissibility of the results of these certificates and results, and convince the Judge that the results should not be used as evidence against the accused person.
A conviction for this charge may also result in loss of licence, loss of insurance coverage, and penalties of fines or jail. The evidence in these cases usually consists of witnessâ observations of the driving by the accused. There is no need for the Prosecution to show any sort of alcohol or drug impairment â only that the driving is dangerous.