Aggressive DUI/OWI Defense Team

Representation in all DUI/OWI and Drivers License Matters.

DID YOU KNOW?

1. Your license is set to be suspended at your initial hearing.

2. Depending on the conviction, your license could be suspended up to 2 years. 

3. Depending on the conviction, your fine could be as high as $10,000 dollars.

4. Depending on your conviction, your maximum sentence could be up to 2.5 years in the Department of Correction.

5. You have options to avoid or shorten your license suspension.

Being arrested for Operating While  Intoxicated (OWI) or DUI (Driving Under the Influence) is a scary  experience.

People wonder where to turn and what their options are. Our  OWI / DUI Defense Attorneys can explain the issues related to your OWI /  DUI arrest and help you understand what the consequences of a OWI /DUI  charge may mean for you. At first, it may seem like fighting your OWI /  DUI is a lost cause. Many people simply walk into court and plead guilty  without understanding the consequences of pleading guilty to an OWI /  DUI . However, there are many ways to fight an OWI /DUI and keep your  driving privileges. The OWI / DUI lawyers at Rhame Elwood and McClure  have successfully handled OWI / DUI cases for years throughout NWI. We  aggressively defend our clients’ rights, protect their freedom and their  driving privileges. Our lawyers have a long history of favorable  results in their OWI / DUI cases.

Kenneth B. Elwood

Contact: 

Portage Professional Center 

3200 Willowcreek Road, Suite A 

Portage, Indiana 46368

Phone: 219-762-0494

Fax: 219-762-4047

[email protected] 

Ken Elwood has been a resident of Portage and Porter County, Indiana, since the age of five. He earned a B.S. from the renowned Indiana University’s Kelly School of Business in 1991 and graduated from Valparaiso University School of Law in 1994. Attorney Elwood joined John Rhame in 1990 and became a partner with the firm Rhame & Elwood in 2000. Continue reading. 

Scott R. McClure 

Contact: 

Portage Professional Center 

3200 Willowcreek Road, Suite A 

Portage, Indiana 46368

Phone: 219-762-0494

Fax: 219-762-4047

[email protected] 

Scott McClure was born and raised in Northwest Indiana. He earned his B.A. in 1998 from Indiana University in Bloomington and his J.D. in 2001 from DePaul School of Law in Chicago. Attorney McClure became an Associate at the Law Office of Rhame and Elwood in 2001 and became a partner in 2017, when it became Rhame, Elwood & McClure. He is driven by the concept of equal justice and concentrates his practice in Municipal Law, Criminal Law, and Estate Planning. Continue reading.

What can we do to help you?

KNOW YOUR RIGHTS!

LICENSE SUSPENSION

Your license will be suspended at the initial hearing for a minimum of (180) days. However, the law allows for a Specialized Driving Privileges Permit (SDP). A court may stay the suspension and grant a specialized driving privilege permit. If granted, the SDP privileges must be determined by a court and may include, but are not limited to: Requiring the use of ignition interlock devices: and restricting a person to being allowed to operate a motor vehicle: a.) during certain hours of the day: or b.) between a specific location and the person’s residence.

Rhame, Elwood & McClure employs certain procedures and processes which may substantially reduce the suspension or completely avoid it. Law enforcement takes OWI arrests very seriously. It is very difficult to have an OWI charge reduced to a lesser offense. You can maximize that possibility, and the possibility of being granted a Specialized Driving Privileges Permit by hiring the right attorney. 

OWI CRIMINAL CHARGES

You’ve been charged with an OWI (Operating while Intoxicated) charge. This charge is likely filed under I.C. 9-30-5-1. You’ve likely been charged with one or all of the following: 

  

I.C. 9-30-5-1 Operation of vehicle with specified amount of alcohol or controlled substance in body – defense-

                   (a) A person who operates with an alcohol concentration equivalent to at least eight-hundredths (0.08) gram of alcohol but less that fifteen-hundredths (0.15) gram of alcohol per: 

                               (1) one hundred (100) milliliters of the person’s blood; or

                               (2) two hundred ten (210) liters of the person’s breath; commits a Class C misdemeanor. 

                   (b) A person who operates a vehicle with an alcohol concentration of at least fifteen-hundredths (0.15) gram of alcohol per: 

                               (1) one hundred (100) milliliters of the person’s blood; or 

                               (2) two hundred ten (210) liters of the persons breath; commits a Class A misdemeanor. 

                   (c) A person who operates a vehicle with a controlled substance listed in schedule I or II of IC 35-48-2 or its metabolite in the persons’ body commits a Class C Misdemeanor. 

                   (d) It is a defense to subsection (c) that the accused person consumed the controlled substance under a valid prescription or order of a practitioner (as defined in IC 35-48-1) who acted in the course of the practitioner’s professional practice.

    

I.C. 9-30-5-2. Operation of vehicle while intoxicated. –

            Except as a provided in subsection (b), a person who operates a vehicle while intoxicated commits a Class C misdemeanor. 

            (b) An offense described in subsection (a) is a Class A misdemeanor if the person operates a vehicle in a manner that endangers another person.   

            Under certain circumstances an OWI charge can be charged as a felony offense. This is either because the individual has a prior criminal conviction for operating while intoxicated or an accident was involved that resulted in injuries. 

CRIMINAL PENALTIES

A conviction for a Class A Misdemeanor is as follows: 

            IC 35-50-3-2. Class A Misdemeanor – A person who commits a Class A Misdemeanor shall be imprisoned for a fixed term of not             more than 1 year; in addition (s)he may be fined not more than ($5,000 dollars). 

Penalties for a Class C Misdemeanor is as follows: 

            IC 35-50-3-4. Class C Misdemeanor – A person who commits a Class C Misdemeanor shall be imprisoned for a fixed term of not             more than (60) days; in addition (s)he may be fined not more than ($500 dollars). 

  

Penalties for a Level 6 Felony is as follows: 

            IC 35-50-2-7. Level 6 Felony – A person who commits a Level 6 Felony shall be imprisoned for a fixed term of between (6)             months and (2 ½) years, with the advisory sentence being (1) year. In addition the person may not be fined more than ($10,000             dollars). 

  

Penalties for a Level 5 Felony is as follows: 

            IC-35-50-2-6. Level 5 Felony – A person who commits a Level 5 felony shall be imprisoned for a fixed term of between (1) and (6)             years with the advisory sentence being (3) years. In addition, the person may be fined not more than ($10,000 dollars). 

      

YOU HAVE RIGHTS

1.)   Right to hire an attorney of your choice

2.)   Right to have an attorney assigned to represent you if you do not have sufficient funds to hire an attorney;

3.)   The right to a speedy and public trial by jury; 

4.)   The right to confront in person and cross-examine witnesses who would testify against you; 

5.)   The right to have the court subpoena witnesses to testify in your favor; 

6.)   The right to have the state prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt at trial where you cannot be compelled to testify against yourself;   

7.)   The right to appeal the judgement of the court if you were to have a trial and be found guilty. 

      

You’re driving along and suddenly you see red and blue lights flashing in the rearview mirror. Panic sets in. Being pulled over can be a nerve-racking experience. Thoughts of “Why am I being pulled over?” and “What could I have done wrong?” start running through your head. This occurs even if you have not had any alcoholic drinks. Getting pulled over could be for things like a seat belt violation, a license plate light being out, or a headlight issue. However, if you are being stopped for a DUI/OWI, then it’s an entirely different experience. 

  

A DUI/OWI is one of the most serious driving infractions in Indiana, with vehicular homicide being the only other offense that is more serious. Accordingly, it makes sense that the penalties associated with a DUI/OWI are severe. These penalties include fines, a suspension of your driver’s license, and even the possibility of jail time. With such severe penalties, you should not handle this matter on your own. Instead, you should talk with an experienced DUI/OWI defense attorney in Indiana. 

  

Unfortunately, your OWI defense attorney will not be in the car with you when you are pulled over. Thus, it is vital to the success of your case that you conduct yourself accordingly at the traffic stop. In other words, how you conduct yourself during the traffic stop will determine what your OWI defense attorney can do on your behalf. 

  

Here are some things to keep in mind if you are pulled over. 

  

STOP WHEN THE POLICE TELL YOU TO PULL OVER 

  

Do not refuse to pull over. This is one of the biggest pitfalls a driver can make. Regardless of your driving history or what type of car you are driving, never refuse to pull over for the police. Failure to stop can lead to being charged with eluding the police and other various charges (not to mention being charged with a DUI/OWI). Even if you think you will fail the breathalyzer or field sobriety test, you still need to pull over, cooperate, and give the police your credentials. Failure to do this will make your life a lot more difficult and it will limit what your DUI/OWI defense attorney can do for you.   

  

SO YOU’VE BEEN STOPPED BY THE POLICE. . . NOW YOU MUST COOPERATE WITH THEM

  

Although you are not thrilled about being pulled over, especially for DUI/OWI, you must cooperate with the police. Meaning, you need to provide your credentials (i.e., license and registration). Using profanities, not cooperating, or generally giving the police a hard time is going to do nothing but hurt your case because this type of behavior is conveyed to the prosecutor. Being rude to the police handcuffs your DUI/OWI defense attorney’s ability to engage in meaningful negotiation with the prosecutor. 

  

UNFORTUNATELY, YOUR DUI DEFENSE ATTORNEY IS NOT A TIME TRAVELER AND CANNOT UNDO WHATEVER YOU DID AT THE TRAFFIC STOP

Your DUI/OWI defense attorney needs to be able to convince the prosecutor to get you the best outcome as possible. It is the prosecutor who decides to dismiss or reduce your charges. How you act at the traffic stop determines your DUI/OWI defense attorney’s ability to achieve that best outcome on your behalf. In other words, if you are not cooperating with the police, then you are already making the outcome worse for yourself. Even if you have been drinking, which increases the likelihood that you will act out, the very last thing you want to do is be rude to the police.  

  

SHOULD YOU TAKE A BREATHALYZER?

  

Defense attorneys all answer this question differently. Some will recommend not taking the test and some will recommend taking the test. Taking into consideration the Courts in NWI and their cooperation in issuing warrants to compel a chemical test, and the significant license consequences if you refuse (an automatic 1-year license suspension) we generally believe taking the test is the better option. Ultimately, the decision is yours to make. 

  

YOU JUST GOT PULLED OVER FOR A DUI, WHAT CAN I DO?

  

Call and talk to an experienced DUI/OWI defense attorney. Not doing so only hurts your ability to achieve the best outcome possible regarding your DUI/OWI matter.

© Rhame Elwood McClure, P.C.

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