One of the main questions a person facing a drunk driving charge will have is whether his or her case will go to trial or not. The answer to this isn't always simple because of the unique elements that are present in many DUI cases. In many cases, the decision about a case going to trial will depend on what choices the defendant makes.
In the American criminal justice system, many cases are resolved with plea agreements. If you know that you were driving drunk and are trying to minimize the penalties that you will face, a plea deal might be the correct option for resolving your case. You would still have to face the minimum penalties that are set forth by state laws, but you might be able to work out a deal that includes other penalties or longer-than-the-minimum penalties.
Just as with any criminal case, you have the right to a jury trial if that is what you want to do. You have to carefully consider the case against you and the defense that you have against that case. There is no guarantee that you will be found not guilty at trial. Additionally, you usually don't have any say in what penalties you will face if you are found guilty when you stand trial.
You are the only person who can decide if a plea deal is worth considering or if a trial is the way you want your case decided. No matter what you decide to do, make sure that you think of how the decision will affect you in the long term and short term before you put your plan into action.
Source: FindLaw, "Will My DUI Case Go to Trial?," Ephrat Livni, Esq, accessed May 26, 2016