Tag: dui

Memorial Day OVI Checkpoint In Montgomery County (5/27/16)

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checkpoint-alerts2-810wAAA says more than 38 million Americans are expected to travel this holiday weekend.  This Memorial Day, there will be multiple saturation patrols and jurisdictions are setting up additional traffic patrols to make travel safer.  In addition to OVI (drunk driving) patrols, troopers will be looking for seat belt violations, texting while driving and speed offenses.

There will be an OVI checkpoint in Montgomery County on Friday.

If you find yourself in need of an attorney, Charles M. Rowland II (DaytonDUI) will be available 24/7 at (937) 776-2671.  “My staff and I are mobilized to help people who are from out of town and people who might need immediate assistance.”  I have established a reputation as one of Ohio’s leading DUI attorneys, and I want to help you. “All I do is DUI defense.”

 

What Is Probation Like?

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Probation in Ohio is now called “community control” and provides for terms and conditions you must comply with in order not to go to jail.  Probation requires you to work with a “probation officer” (P.O.) for a given period of time as set by the court.  A common misconception is that the probation officer will actively work against you in an effort to return you to jail.  Most of the time, the probation officer is working to make sure you comply with the court order and stay out of jail.  It is up to you to show up and make sure the probation officer is kept aware of your circumstances.  You should maintain contact with your trial attorney as may problems can be solved if there is good communication.  Most experienced attorneys can advise you about how to navigate the courts probation department and successfully complete probation. Under Ohio law, you cannot demand to serve jail time instead of being placed on community control in misdemeanor OVI cases, see State v. Walton (2000), 137 Ohio App. 3d 450, 457 — “…(A) misdemeanor offender has no right to refuse probation and to demand to serve her sentence of imprisonment.” Unlicensed driver was headed to prison for eight months and wanted six month traffic sentence served concurrently. Instead, the judge put her on probation.

Often, a court will only keep you on probation until you have paid all fines and costs and complied with the requirements of your punishments.  In DUI/OVI cases, the probation department is responsible for setting up the 72 hour Driver Intervention Program and will make sure you attend and complete the program.  Work with your Ohio DUI attorney to learn about how to comply with the terms and conditions of probation (now called “Community Control Sanctions”).  Depending on the court, you may face any or all of the following probationary conditions: No new DUI or serious traffic arrests; Alcohol Assessment and/or Follow Up Alcohol Counseling; Random Urine Screens; Restrictions on driving times; No “Refusals” of blood, breath, or urine tests if arrested for DUI; No odor of alcohol while driving a vehicle; Pay fines and court costs; Attend MADD’s Victim Impact Panel; Attend probation officer meetings; Install Ignition Interlock (breath tester in the vehicle); Continuous Alcohol Monitor (ankle bracelet); Restrictions on travel outside of Ohio or the county; Electronic Home Monitoring or House Arrest; Work-Release or Community Service.  As you can see, the probation department and your probation officer have a great deal of power over your life while you are on community control.  Your DUI attorney should be a continued resource available to help you with issues that arise while on community control.

If you have been arrested for violating probation, you will have a hearing in front of  the judge. Since you have already been sentenced to probation for committing a crime, you will not be entitled to a jury to determine whether or not you have violated the terms of your probation.  The sentencing judge will hear the facts of your alleged violation, and determine if you did in fact violate any of the terms or conditions. A probation violation is not like a new criminal charge, you can be forced to testify against yourself and witness testimony can be used against you.  In most courts violations of the terms of your probation are very serious matters.  Unlike criminal matters, prosecutors are not bound by the “beyond a reasonable doubt standard.  Under Ohio law, prosecutors need only show that there exists a “preponderance of the evidence” that a violation has occurred, which means they only have to prove that it is more likely than not that you violated probation.  You should be aware of the terms and ask questions if you have any confusion.  A violation of technical terms (such as changing your address without informing the court, failing to pay on time and not showing up for your probation appointment) are as serious as the violation of a more substantive term.  Being charged with a new crime can result in a revocation of probation even if you are not convicted due to the lower preponderance of the evidence standard.  You could not only face jail time on the new charge, but face the time previously suspended from your earlier offense.  The charges need not be in the same court to invoke the court’s community control jurisdiction.

Drugged Driving Defense Requires Experience

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driving under the influence of drugsDriving under the influence of drugs is the next generation of OVI (operating a vehicle impaired) enforcement in Ohio. It has become a priority of the Ohio State Highway Patrol.  Here are some studies suggesting why they are focusing on this issue.

According to the 2012 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), an estimated 10.3 million people aged 12 or older (or 3.9 percent of adolescents and adults) reported driving under the influence of drugs during the year prior to being surveyed. This was higher than the rate in 2011 (3.7percent) and lower than the rate in 2002 (4.7 percent). By comparison, in 2012, an estimated 29.1 million persons (11.2 percent) reported driving under the influence of alcohol at least once in the past year. (This percentage has dropped since 2002, when it was 14.2 percent.) According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) 2007 National Roadside Survey, more than 16 percent of weekend, nighttime drivers tested positive for illegal, prescription, or over-the-counter drugs. More than 11 percent tested positive for illicit drugs.  According to NSDUH data, men are more likely than women to drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol. And young adults aged 18 to 25 are more likely to drive after taking drugs than other age groups.  One NHTSA study found that in 2009, 18 percent of fatally injured drivers tested positive for at least one illicit, prescription, or over-the-counter drug (an increase from 13 percent in 2005).

Law enforcement from across Ohio has received specialized training via the state’s Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) course. Officers participate in an intensive three-week course. The first two phases of the course are held locally, and the third phase takes place at the Maricopa County Jail in Arizona. This facility processes an average of 900 inmates per day and will provide officers the opportunity to conduct hands-on drug evaluations for all seven drug categories. “I am pleased this training is being offered to our law enforcement partners,” said Ohio Office of Criminal Justice Services (OCJS) Executive Director Karhlton Moore. “This will be an invaluable resource in our fight to curb impaired driving, as well as focus on emerging issues such as the prescription drug epidemic currently affecting so many communities across Ohio.”

I have been critical of this approach because it reinforces the mistaken belief by many in the law enforcement community that you can arrest your way out of a drug epidemic.  It funnels resources away from programs designed to help people and into programs to lock people away.  It should be no surprise to anyone that law enforcement likes this new tool.  As the old saying goes, if the only tool you have is a hammer; every problem is a nail. Law enforcement officers will use this tool to do what they are designed to do and that is make arrests.  It is up to us to question whether society is benefited by making more criminals than more recovered addicts.

I have taken courses in the Drug Recognition Expert Protocol and have studied the material relied on by DREs in making arrest decisions.  I am one of the only DUI attorneys in Ohio that has received this training and I am in a great position to help you if you are charged with a drugged driving charge. Call me at (937) 318-1384 or 888-ROWLAND (888-769-5263).

Beavercreek OVI – Beavercreek DUI? I Can Help

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beavercreek oviIf you have been arrested for OVI in Fairborn, Bath Township, Beavercreek or Beavercreek Township, your misdemeanor OVI case will be heard in the Beavercreek/Fairborn Municipal Court, 1148 Kauffman Ave. in Fairborn, Ohio.  If you need to find information about a case in the Fairborn Municipal Court you can search HERE for case information or visit the court’s web site HERE. I have been a life-long resident of Beavercreek and I have represented the accused drunk driver in the Fairborn/Beavercreek Municipal Court since 1995.  I dedicate my practice to OVI law and has some of the most impressive credentials for OVI attorneys in the state of Ohio.  If you find yourself in need of criminal representation in the Fairborn Municipal Court, contact me, Fairborn DUI Attorney Charles M. Rowland II, today!  You can reach me at 937-318-1DUI (318-1384), 1-888-ROWLAND (888-769-5263), or 24/7 on the after-hours DUI Hotline at 937-776-2671, by texting DaytonDUI (one word) to 50500 or by visiting www.FairbornDUI.com, or www.BeavercreekDUI.com.