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The Aging Process and Field Sobriety Tests

DWI Dallas/Ft Worth Attorney
It is not surprising that every year 1.4 million Americans are diagnosed with cancer1, the second leading cause of death next to heart disease. It should be surprising that there are also approximately 1.4 million DWI/DUI arrests (1 of every 139 license drivers) in the country a year with 16,685 alcohol related fatalities in 2005.2 “Alcohol related” fatalities defined as at least one driver or nonoccupant involved in the crash having a blood alcohol concentration of .01 grams per deciliter or higher. These figures include fatalities that were NOT caused by the presence of alcohol.3 Boiled down, NHTSA has led a colossal campaign against DWI/DUI, arresting a disproportionate amount of people compared to the real threat of fatalities on the road (alcohol related fatalities representing 1% of the drivers being arrested). One does not need to be a mathematical genius to understand that this country has a problem, and it’s not what MADD is concerned about. The field sobriety tests are a mechanism to convict people not test whether or not they are sober. The standardized field sobriety tests are a witch-hunt being perpetuated by law enforcement on our own people. Even a recent 2006 NHTSA publication admits, “Road tests have long been considered the gold standard for measuring driving ability. They have widely-recognized limitations.” 4 One would not know this visiting the courtrooms across America. This paper addresses one of the most common sense problems contributing to false convictions, the condition and age of the subject.

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About Mimi Coffey

Mimi Coffey
Mimi Coffey is a trial attorney with 17 years experience. She is the founder of The Coffey Firm, serving Dallas, Tarrant and Collin counties. She is board-certified in DWI by the National College of DUI Defense (NCDD) and is a Regent of the NCDD. She has also appeared numerous times as a legal commentator for CNN, National Fox News, as well as local Dallas/Fort Worth stations on DWI-related stories. She is also a frequent speaker at both national and statewide seminars. She is a prolific trial attorney with a proven trial record. She has tried over 300 cases, with 80% of them being jury trials in her 18-year career. Her success includes everything from .21 breath tests, blood tests to 3 car accident cases just to name a few. Mimi’s cases have also made good case law for the State of Texas. For example, in Tarvin v. State, it was found that weaving within your own lane was not a traffic violation. In Lajoie v. State, the courts determined that the defendant’s request to have his attorney must be suppressed as opposed to used as evidence of guilt. She is the author of Texas DWI Defense: The Law and Practice. She is also the author of three nationally-published articles and four statewide articles. Mimi has twice attended Indiana University’s Borkenstein Course for state toxicologists both on alcohol and drugs. She has also completed the NHTSA SFST Course, SFST Instructor Course and the 12-Step DRE Mini-Course Program. She is also one of the first attorneys in the United States to attend the Axion Labs Gas Chromatography Training. Her minor in college was Geology lending her a comprehensive and disciplined scientific mind when it comes to scientific and mathematical issues such as blood and breath testing. Mimi has won the President’s Heart of a Champion Award presented by the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association (TCDLA) numerous times. Mimi also led the effort to get the State Bar of Texas’ Board of Legal Specialization to recognize the NCDD’s DWI Certification. Mimi has been active in 4 legislative sessions in fighting against bad DWI laws. Her efforts prevented the breath/blood test refusal as being a separate crime. She has advocated for true deferred adjudication for DWI. Mimi also sued a Dalworthington Gardens police officer for illegally drawing blood. Since her lawsuit, the 2nd Court of Appeals ruled against police officers drawing blood. (The Court of Criminal Appeals overturned this). Mimi also sued the Texas Department of Public Safety for its double jeopardy surcharge program. Since the initiation of her suit, Texas DPS has instituted amnesty programs based on one’s earning potential.

If you would like to contact the author, please visit: http://www.mimicoffey.com


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