I got sick in my car and got a DUI

Question: I got stopped for a DUI and the Woodstock cop noticed that I vomited in my car. He noticed it on the inside of my door. I think the police officer thought because I threw up that I was drunk. When he pulled me over and got out of his patrol car and came to speak with me he looked in the car with his flashlight and he asked about the vomit, which was starting to smell real bad. I didn’t know what to tell him so I said I had some bad seafood. I said I think I had some bad shrimp or scallops and that’s what caused me to get sick.

The cop asked where I’d gotten the seafood and I told him the restaurant where I had dinner. I really don’t know if shrimp or scallops are even on the menu because that night I had a big steak with French fries and I really don’t like seafood much. I just said that I got sick from the food because I had been drinking and I thought I’d definitely get a DUI if I told him that I’d been drinking beers and some nice bourbon.

Basically, I went out to eat with a buddy of mine from work and we drank a lot. I sort of lost track of time and I drank more than I usually do. He kept buying me drinks at the bar and I couldn’t turn down expensive bourbon and craft beer.

I want to know from a Woodstock DUI lawyer how bad it looks that I puked in the car and if that really makes me look drunk because anyone can get food poisoning and they can get sick. Just getting sick doesn’t mean that I was drunk or even buzzed, right?

L.G. in Woodstock, GA

Answer: Getting sick in your car certainly does not look good to a judge, jury or prosecutor. Many people would think that if someone vomited in their car it might be because of drinking too much.

But, of course, there can be many reasons why someone vomited, including food poisoning, a virus or simply having an upset stomach. We’ve handled cases where we have successfully argued that our client got sick for reasons other than alcohol or drug ingestion.

We really need more information to determine the issues and the best defense in your particular DUI case. For instance, we’d like to know why you were stopped by the police, if you performed the field sobriety tests and if you took a breath or blood test, among other things.

And we’d like to know how your voice sounded on the video (if there was one). Did you sound “intoxicated” or not?

Again, there can be many reasons why someone vomited, but we’d need more information to help with your case.

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