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What Does it Mean to Operate a Vehicle?

Every year thousands of people are pulled over under the suspicion they have been drinking and driving. They face harsh penalties that affect their reputation and their legal rights. Sadly, not all those handcuffed for the crime are guilty of attempting to operate a vehicle. In order to be accused of driving under the influence, officers must prove you were the one operating the vehicle on the road.

If you believe you have been wrongfully accused of a DUI, contact Rhode Island DUI defense attorney Matthew Marin today at 401-287-4384 for a free consultation.

Operating a Vehicle in Rhode Island

A police officer cannot rightfully accuse you of driving under the influence unless you are trying to drive a vehicle, whether on the road, in a parking lot, or on a private driveway. This means if you are sitting in the driver’s seat but not driving, you may not be arrested. You may have not been intending to drive at all, and therefore should not face charges. This is not necessarily the case in Massachusetts.

You may be accused of different offenses if you are trying to operate a vehicle other than a car. You may be accused of operating under the influence (OUI) if you attempt to operate a boat, four-wheeler, motor vehicle, scooters, go-carts, dirt bikes, or jet skis with a BAC over .08.

One of the most important things to consider when facing a DUI charge when you weren’t actively driving is that the arresting officer must have had probable cause for the arrest. If probable cause was absent, your case may be dismissed.

Contact Us

Rhode Island DUI defense attorney Matthew Marin has years of experience aggressively defending clients from DUI and OUI charges. If you have been accused of these crimes, contact Matthew Marin immediately by calling 401-287-4384.