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DUI Defense In “My Cousin Vinny”

00DUI Court ProcessTags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

dui defense attorney

DUI defense is never far from my mind.  I was reminded of this last weekend watching one of my favorite movies, “My Cousin Vinny.” In the movie, a novice New York attorney (Joe Pesci) heads to the deep south to defend his cousin and his friend in a high-profile murder case.  He is met with a hostile judge and a pompous attorney who are hell bent on seeing the two kids put away for murder. Consequently, comedy ensues.

Because of his inexperience, Vinny has a hard time at trial. Especially relevant is his lack of understanding of criminal procedure. However, he makes a comeback. In the course of the trial the prosecutor call George Wilbur (James Rebhorn) as an expert for the State.  Vinny objects.

Vinny Gambini: I object to this witness being called at this time. We’ve been given no prior notice he’d testify. No discovery of any tests he’s conducted or reports he’s prepared. And as the court is aware, the defense is entitled to advance notice of any witness who will testify, particularly to those who will give scientific evidence, so that we can properly prepare for cross-examination, as well as to give the defense an opportunity to have the witness’s reports reviewed by a defense expert, who might then be in a position to contradict the veracity of his conclusions.

[there is a short pause as Judge Haller appears caught off-guard by Vinny’s sudden compentence with knowledge of the law]

Judge Chamberlain Haller: Mr. Gambini?

Vinny Gambini: Yes, sir?

Judge Chamberlain Haller: That is a lucid, intelligent, well thought-out objection.

Vinny Gambini: Thank you, Your Honor.

Judge Chamberlain Haller: [firm tone] Overruled.

The State’s witness is the special automotive instructor of forensic studies for the FBI. He testifies that the tire marks left at the scene of the crime match the tires of the vehicle driven by Vinny’s clients.  “Same tires,” says the prosecutor. In addition to the science, the witness has all of the traditional indicia of credibility due to an outstanding education and an authoritative command of the courtroom.  The only problem with his testimony is that he is DEAD WRONG!  In the movie the kids are saved by out-of-work hairdresser Mona Lisa Vito (Marisa Tomei) whose real world expertise proves that the car did not match the tire tracks left at the scene.

In DUI defense we are almost always faced with police officers and forensic experts who are clothed in the traditional indicia of credibility.  In addition, DUI defense attorneys also face a machine that the state of Ohio has exempted from scientific challenge. The only thing that our clients have going for them is us! As a result, you need to have an attorney you can depend on.

I also take pleasure in proving the machine and the State’s witnesses wrong.  It is said that DUI is the most frequently mis-charged crime in the United States.  When you can get a jury to see an error it is as dramatic as anything Hollywood can produce. Furthermore, it is a feeling that most attorneys, especially me, strive to have as much as humanly possible.  Maybe one day I will have the opportunity to deliver the opening statement that Vinny Gambini uses in the movie…

Vinny Gambini: [opening statements] Uh… everything that guy just said is bullshit… Thank you.

I dedicate my practice to defending the accused drunk driver in the Miami Valley and throughout Ohio. I have the credentials and the experience to win your case. You can be sure that I want to be Dayton’s choice for drunk driving defense. Contact me by phone at (937) 318-1384 or toll-free at 1-888-ROWLAND (888-769-5263). If you need assistance after hours, call the 24/7 DUI Hotline at (937) 776-2671.  You can have DaytonDUI at your fingertips by downloading the DaytonDUI Android App or have DaytonDUI sent directly to your mobile device by texting DaytonDUI (one word) to 50500.  Follow DaytonDUI on Facebook, @DaytonDUI on Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr, Pheed and Pintrest or get RSS of the Ohio DUI blog.  You can email CharlesRowland@DaytonDUI.com or visit his office at 2190 Gateway Dr., Fairborn, Ohio 45324.  Finally, you should keep my motto in mind,  “All I do is DUI defense.”

To learn more about DUI defense check these city-specific sites at the following links:

FairbornDaytonSpringfieldKetteringVandaliaXeniaMiamisburgHuber HeightsOakwoodBeavercreekCenterville

 

DUI on the Water and the Return of Boating Season

00DUI & Boating, Physical Control, Reckless OperationTags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Slalom skier

With the return of the summer boating season, many people will soon be enjoying Ohio’s beautiful lakes and rivers.  This is a reminder that Ohio is cracking down on captains who indulge in alcohol while on the water.  Boating Under the Influence is illegal in Ohio. 2001 Sub. S.B. 123, eff. 1-1-04 sought to unify the drunk driving provisions with Ohio’s boating laws.   O.R.C. 1547.11(A)(1)  to O.R.C. 1547.11(A)(6) prohibit a person from operating or being in physical control of a vessel underway or manipulating water skis, aquaplanes, or similar devices while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

O.R.C. 1547.11(A)(1) is the impairment provision of the law, preventing operation or physical control while under the influence.  The law also has a provision preventing operation with a prohibited level of alcohol which it sets at the same prohibited level (.08) as the DUI/OVI law Unlike the DUI/OVI law, there are no high-tier provisions which apply to boating. A third section of the law prohibits operation or physical control with a concentration of certain controlled substances (marijuana, cocaine, amphetamine, et al.) or metabolites of the same.  This section of the law is identical to the DUI-drug provisions found in O.R.C. 4511.19(A)(1)(j).

Subsequent amendments to the law, 2007 Am. Sub. S.B. 17, eff. 9-30-08, allows for forced blood draws for persons with two or BUI offenses.  A BUI offense can be used to enhance a subsequent DUI/OVI  offense. O.R.C. 4511.181(A)(6)-(7).  Some important differences in Ohio’s BUI law, stem from the fact that Ohio does not require an operator’s license to operate a watercraft.  Therefore, no administrative license suspension provisions are in the law.  Instead, the chief of the Division of Watercraft gives written notice that you are prevented from operating or being in physical control of a watercraft (or from registering a watercraft) for one year from the date of the alleged violation.  Another key difference is that a fourth or subsequent BUI offense is not subject to felony enhancement.

Penalties for Boating Under the Influence offenses are set forth at O.R.C. 1547.99 and are similar to those provided for DUI/OVI offenses.  Boating Under the Influence is a first degree misdemeanor and is subject to a minimum 3-day jail sentence and a maximum 6 months in jail.  The 3-day jail sentence can be served in a qualified driver intervention program.  The minimum mandatory fine for a first BUI offense is $150.  A second offense within 6 years carries a mandatory 10 day jail sentence, but the minimum mandatory fine is still $150.  A third offense requires a minimum of 30 days in jail. NOTE: The Ohio legislature is constantly “tweaking” the Ohio DUI and BUI laws, so please check with an attorney as these laws may have changed.

Contact Charles Rowland by phone at 937-318-1DUI (937-318-1384), 937-879-9542, or toll-free at 1-888-ROWLAND (1-888-769-5263). For after-hours help contact our 24/7 DUI HOTLINE at 937-776-2671.For information about Dayton DUI sent directly to your mobile device, text DaytonDUI (one word) to 50500.  Follow DaytonDUI on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/DaytonDUI or Get Twitter updates via SMS by texting follow DaytonDUI to 40404. DaytonDUI is also available on Facebook and you can access updates by becoming a fan of Dayton DUI/OVI Defense.  You can also email Charles Rowland at: CharlesRowland@CharlesRowland.com or write to us at 2190 Gateway Dr., Fairborn, Ohio 45324.

DUI Case Law Update: State v. Ilg

00Breath Testing, DUI Case LawTags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

DUI case law update: State v. Ilg, Slip Opinion No. 2014-Ohio-4258

DUI case lawFor most of my career I have had to deal with a tremendous disadvantage in DUI cases.  In 1984, the Ohio Supreme Court decided State v. Vega, 12 Ohio St. 3d 185, 465 N.E.2d 1303 (1984) which was interpreted to prevent an attack on the breath test machine if it attacked the “general reliability” of a breath alcohol test if it was “conducted in accordance with methods approved by the director of the Ohio Department of Health.” Id.  In practical purposes, courts used VEGA to preclude almost all attacks on a breath test (partition ratio, radio frequency interference, etc.) thereby creating a reality that if the machine produced a result, the result was coming in.  The DUI case law was so bad that it became a matter of some discussion at the national level.

Yesterday, (October 1, 2014) the Supreme Court decided a case which dramatically “re-read” the Vega decision.  The holding of the case stands for the principle that,

Every person accused of an offense involving an Intoxilyzer 8000 machine may challenge the accuracy and credibility of a breath test by showing that the breath-analyzer machine failed to operate properly at the time of testing or that the results had not been analyzed in accordance with methods approved by the director of ODH.

Paradoxically, this is the very reading that most Ohio DUI attorneys have been urging the courts to adopt (with varying results) throughout the State.  With some trepidation I can announce that Veag appears to be dead.

The Ilg decision also requires the government to produce the “COBRA” data about each case.  The State has maintained that compliance with these requests are too burdensome and expensive – the Court disagreed. The court upheld the lower court ruling which excluded results of the test due to the State’s failure to provide the requested discovery.

Obviously, it is important to see how this decision will impact cases in the long term.  However, it stands as an important statement that challenges to the machine (often using good science) will be allowed.

I am amazingly enthusiastic about trying cases involving the Intoxilyzer 8000.  I am overjoyed that the scientific defense, long excluded, should now be used in the courtroom.  More importantly, I am excited for the many people who can now stand up and say that the machine is wrong.  Too many innocent people have been condemned to harsh mandatory sentences without recourse. Ohio DUI case law now allows us to present science in their defense.  Now the fight begins.

Attorney Charles M. Rowland II dedicates his practice to defending the accused drunk driver in the Miami Valley and throughout Ohio.  He has the credentials and the experience to win your case and has made himself Dayton’s choice for drunk driving defense. Contact Charles Rowland by phone at (937) 318-1384 or toll-free at 1-888-ROWLAND (888-769-5263). If you need assistance after hours, call the 24/7 DUI Hotline at (937) 776-2671.  You can have DaytonDUI at your fingertips by downloading the DaytonDUI Android App or have DaytonDUI sent directly to your mobile device by texting DaytonDUI (one word) to 50500.  Follow DaytonDUI on Facebook, @DaytonDUI on Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr, Pheed and Pintrest or get RSS of the Ohio DUI blog.  You can email CharlesRowland@DaytonDUI.com or visit his office at 2190 Gateway Dr., Fairborn, Ohio 45324.  “All I do is DUI defense.”

For more on DUI case law contact me, or check these city-specific sites at the following links:

FairbornDaytonSpringfieldKetteringVandaliaXeniaMiamisburg, Huber HeightsOakwoodBeavercreekCenterville

Ohio DUI Crackdown Begins Today!

00DUI CheckpointsTags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

ohio duiYou can expect a major increase in Ohio DUI enforcement beginning today.  Operation “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” will put 99 law enforcement agencies on our roads with over 8,400 hours of extra enforcement that will run through Labor Day.  The national Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over crackdown is a program organized by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and focuses on combining high-visibility enforcement with heightened public awareness through advertising and publicity.

If you want to receive updated information on Dayton OVI checkpoint locations, enhanced traffic enforcement, saturation patrols and other important developments that affect you, sign up for text alerts on the main page of this blog. OVI checkpoint alerts will be sent directly to your mobile device/smartphone in the location you choose in the Miami Valley. In the past month we have alerted our followers to the State Route 35 traffic initiative and three local sobriety checkpoints. You should also know that we respect your trust and we will never send you irrelevant information and/or advertisements. This service is free and available to the general public.

You can also put DaytonDUI on your Android Smart phone via the DaytonDUI app. The app helps you know your rights and know yourself by providing a drink tally so that you do not overindulge. You can send safe drinking tips to friends or use the app to find the nearest taxi for a safe trip home. The app brings you the best of DaytonDUI’s video and audio content and gives you a chance to take pictures and record memories so that you can aid in your own defense. We provide OVI checkpoint information because our sincere desire is to make our roads a safer place.

Ohio DUI attorney Charles M. Rowland II dedicates his practice to defending the accused drunk driver in the Miami Valley and throughout Ohio.  He has the credentials and the experience to win your case and has made himself Dayton’s choice for drunk driving defense. Contact Charles Rowland by phone at (937) 318-1384 or toll-free at 1-888-ROWLAND (888-769-5263). If you need assistance after hours, call the 24/7 DUI Hotline at (937) 776-2671.  You can have DaytonDUI at your fingertips by downloading the DaytonDUI Android App or have DaytonDUI sent directly to your mobile device by texting DaytonDUI (one word) to 50500.  Follow DaytonDUI on Facebook, @DaytonDUI on Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr, Pheed and Pintrest or get RSS of the Ohio DUI blog.  You can email CharlesRowland@DaytonDUI.com or visit his office at 2190 Gateway Dr., Fairborn, Ohio 45324.  “All I do is DUI defense.”

To schedule a free Ohio DUI consultation contact me, or check these city-specific sites at the following links:

FairbornDaytonSpringfieldKetteringVandaliaXeniaMiamisburg, Huber HeightsOakwoodBeavercreekCenterville

The Dayton DUI Blog Gets Recognition

00Other Areas & InterestsTags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Dayton DUI BlogThis very Dayton DUI blog has received inclusion in the LawBlogs.net collection of prestigious legal blogs.  At LawBlogs.net they have collected blogs that deal with almost every conceivable area of law.  It is well organized and fully integrated so that you can follow it on Twitter, Facebook and G+.  Look for us listed as Ohio DUI | OVI Blog!

The founder, Matthias Klappenbach explains,

I would love to start building out this community of law blogs. Right now there’s barely anyone around. Visitors are coming through links from JuraBlogs.com or somehow find the site on Google. However I will keep adding features as I believe in the idea of aggregating the posts and building the “one-stop” to stay up to date. I would love to get some feedback on new features or new blogs and of course I will listed to critique as well.  Eventually my goal is to algorithmically curate the popular and trending legal posts and related articles from the main stream media. LawBlogs.net should be seen as a quick help to navigate through the vast amount of legal content published every day.

If you are interested in all things legal give it a try.  I am proud to be a member of this group of blogs and proud that our DUI blog content was deemed good enough to merit inclusion.

Attorney Charles M. Rowland II dedicates his practice to defending the accused drunk driver in the Miami Valley and throughout Ohio.  He has the credentials and the experience to win your case and has made himself Dayton’s choice for drunk driving defense. Contact Charles Rowland by phone at (937) 318-1384 or toll-free at 1-888-ROWLAND (888-769-5263). If you need assistance after hours, call the 24/7 DUI Hotline at (937) 776-2671.  You can have DaytonDUI at your fingertips by downloading the DaytonDUI Android App or have DaytonDUI sent directly to your mobile device by texting DaytonDUI (one word) to 50500.  Follow DaytonDUI on Facebook, @DaytonDUI on Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr, Pheed and Pintrest or get RSS of the Ohio DUI blog.  You can email CharlesRowland@DaytonDUI.com or visit his office at 2190 Gateway Dr., Fairborn, Ohio 45324.  “All I do is DUI defense.”

To learn more about DUI or the Dayton DUI blog check these city-specific sites at the following links:

FairbornDaytonSpringfieldKetteringVandaliaXeniaMiamisburg, Huber HeightsOakwoodBeavercreekCenterville