Calvin Barry and his team of lawyers have successfully defended numerous cases involving drinking and driving allegations. Our law firm has extensive experience in this area of law specifically. If you are charged with a drinking and driving related offence such as “impaired driving” or “over 80” do not plead guilty before you consult a criminal lawyer, as you may have a defence to the allegation. The consequences of a conviction for drinking and driving can have a negative impact on your life. If found guilty of a drinking and driving related offence, you will have a criminal record, you will be prohibited from driving for a minimum of one year and you will have to pay a fine of not less than $1000.00. If you are convicted a subsequent second or third time you may face jail time. In Canada, there are a number of drinking and driving related charges under the Criminal Code. You may be charged with a drinking and driving related charge in any of the following circumstances:
Impaired Driving: Impaired operation of a motor vehicle occurs when your ability to drive a motor vehicle is impaired, as a result of the consumption of alcohol or drugs. Indicia of impairment that the police usually rely on as evidence of this offence may include: erratic driving, odour of an alcoholic beverage on your breath, slurred speech, bloodshot eyes, and unsteadiness or lack of coordination. The police officer’s observations lead to the conclusion that the person’s ability to operate a motor vehicle is impaired by the consumption of alcohol or a drug.
“Over 80 mg”: Unlike impaired driving, the offence of “over 80” does not require proof of impairment, but only proof that the driver had a concentration of alcohol in their blood exceeding 80 milligrams of alcohol in one hundred millilitres of blood. This alcohol concentration reading is usually determined from an analysis of breath samples obtained by police and processed with a breathalyser machine capable of providing such results. These results are also obtained by testing a sample of the driver’s blood.
Refuse Breath / Blood Sample: Refusing to provide a suitable breath sample, either for a roadside screening device or an approved breathalyser machine at the police station, is another drinking and driving related criminal offence. The penalties and consequences of a conviction on this charge are fundamentally the same as those for a conviction on impaired driving or over 80.
Care and Control: It is a criminal offence to have “care and control” of a motor vehicle while your ability to operate that vehicle is impaired or your blood-alcohol level is over the legal limit. According to the Criminal Code of Canada, a person has “care and control” of a vehicle if they are found to be occupying the driver’s seat.