Defense Case At An OUI Trial
A defendant has no obligation to present any evidence when standing trial for a charge of OUI or any other criminal offense. The burden of proof is always on the Commonwealth to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt.
Defending an OUI case at trial can take one of two forms:
- Attacking the Commonwealth's evidence
- Presenting evidence from the defense perspective by calling witnesses.
- Does the defendant need to testify at a Massachusetts DUI trial:
In the majority of case, a defendant charged with DUI in Massachusetts does not need to testify at the trial and is better served by not testifying. The reason is that in many cases most of the important points can be obtained from the arresting officer through cross examination. An additional reason why a defendant may not want to testify is because the Commonwealth will learn additional information that may not be known to the officer that could undermine the defense strategy of the case.
In addition to the accused offering testimony, other witnesses who were with the individual arrested for OUI may offer testimony as to how much the defendant had to drink.
Finally, a defendant may present expert testimony to challenge any breathalyzer evidence at the time of trial.
The decision whether to testify or not and what evidence to present is an important strategic choice that must be made after consultation and discusses and reviewing the case with an experienced Massachusetts OUI lawyer.