50 Washington Street, Suite 3A | Columbus, Indiana 47201


Columbus, Indiana OWI Defense Lawyers Assist Accused Motorists

Determined advocates counter allegations of driving under the influence

Once you’ve been accused of drunk driving, the actions you take could shape how your case is ultimately resolved. At Thomasson, Guthrie, Schuh-Ogle & Happel, P.C. in Columbus, we defend Indiana clients who are facing an allegation of operating a vehicle while intoxicated (OWI). A test that indicates an unlawful level of alcohol or drugs in one’s system does not prove legal guilt. We look at all of the relevant facts and work to defeat unwarranted charges.

Proven attorneys detail laws relating to intoxication behind the wheel

Our knowledgeable Indiana lawyers possess a thorough understanding of the laws governing drunk-driving prosecutions within the state and can advise you on:

  • Intoxication standards — Most drivers can be convicted for per se OWI if their blood alcohol concentration is at least .08 percent. However, drivers under the age of 21 violate the law even if their BAC is .02 percent. Someone who is impaired by drugs or alcohol, regardless of the chemical test, can also be found guilty.
  • Penalties — Various sanctions exist for those who are convicted of driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs, such as fines, license suspension and jail time. Penalties can increase for prior convictions and in cases where extreme intoxication (BAC of at least .15 percent) is proven.
  • Potential reduction in charges — Depending on your history and the facts in your case, our firm might be able to reach an agreement with the prosecutor for a reduced charge. Offenders can sometimes maintain limited driving privileges with a probationary license that allows them to travel to work or school. 

Getting arrested on a drunk driving charge can be embarrassing, and you might be inclined to accept a guilty plea just to get the process over with. However, you shouldn’t commit to a course of action without consulting with an experienced attorney regarding some key questions.

Did the police have proper legal grounds to stop and arrest you?

To pull a vehicle over, a police officer must have a reasonable and articulable suspicion that you are breaking the law in some way. A mere hunch that you might be intoxicated is not enough. To make a proper arrest, a higher standard applies. Law enforcement has to show that probable cause exists. This can be demonstrated in various ways, such as field sobriety test or behaviors consistent with being drunk, but if you believe that there was no legitimate ground for your arrest, we can advise if the evidence collected might be excluded.

Were you advised of the consequences of refusing a breath test or blood alcohol test?

Refusing to take a blood or portable breath test upon request automatically results in a driver’s license suspension. This decision and others you make during an OWI stop could have long-term consequences, so you should know what your rights are. If you were misled into making an unwise choice or made statements while in custody without receiving a Miranda warning, our criminal defense attorneys will advocate for your fundamental rights.

Were all field sobriety, blood and breath tests conducted according to state standards?

One slight deviation from the standards governing field or chemical tests could taint the case against a motorist. By looking at the totality of circumstances in your situation, including the handling of any sample and the length of time it took to administer the test, our lawyers can determine if you were unfairly prejudiced by the careless actions of authorities.

Contact a skillful Indiana OWI defense attorney to arrange a consultation 

Thomasson, Guthrie, Schuh-Ogle & Happel, P.C. defends Indiana motorists accused of operating their vehicle while intoxicated or impaired by drugs. Our office is in Columbus and you can make an appointment regarding your case by calling 812-565-5041 or contacting us online