Under Massachusetts law, there is no charge called drunk driving. There is a charge, however, entitled operating under the influence of intoxicating liquor. To prove an OUI charge, the government must show that a person operated his her/her motor vehicle on a public way at a time that person’s alertness, judgment and ability to respond promptly were lessened by alcohol, or with a blood alcohol level of .08 or above.
This stature, read literally, means that any impairment of mental-clarity and reflexes is sufficient for operating under the influence, or a number of .08 or above is sufficient to prove the charge. Obviously, the more evidence the Commonwealth has to show that an individual’s alertness, judgment and balance are compromised increases the odds of a conviction for the government. Similarly, the higher the reading on the breath test, the more difficult it becomes to show that the reading could have been below .08 at the time of operation.
As a result, if you or someone you know is charged with what is commonly referred to as drunk driving, contact a drunk driving lawyer who will fight for you from arraignment through jury trial. Your livelihood and your right to operate are on the line, so don’t make the decision lightly.