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Tag Archives: Field Sobriety Tests

Avoiding a BWI/BUI Arrest on Memorial Day

Memorial Day weekend begins the boating season throughout the United States.  Enjoying warmer weather with friends and family on beautiful waterways combined with drinking alcohol is an American pastime.  It is not illegal in most states to consume alcohol while driving a boat.  Boaters need to be responsible to ensure that their Memorial Day cheer does not put a dent in their career.  Law enforcement announced increased BWI and BUI enforcement nationwide.  Law enforcement stop boaters for water safety checks without ... Read More »

How Accurate are Field Sobriety Tests?

There are typically three so-called field sobriety tests that Hawaii police officers use when trying to determine if a person is impaired by alcohol.  They were thought up by social scientists pursuant to government grants decades ago.  The science behind them has been examined for years.  There are significant problems.  Besides the fact that many people, completely sober, would fail the tests, the federal government set the bar for employing the tests very low.  The question that was asked was ... Read More »

Diabetes and DUI

Contrary to popular belief, police officers have no inherent skill and little training in detecting levels of intoxication. In fact, they are psychologically predisposed in a drunk driving investigation to “see” what they expect to see, disregarding any alternative explanations. Let’s take a look at one of those possibilities…..As everyone knows, diabetics commonly experience hypoglycemia (low blood sugar levels). And what are the symptoms? Slow and slurred speech, poor balance, impaired motor control, staggering, drowsiness, flushed face, disorientation — in ... Read More »

Michigan’s New Drunk Driving Law Might Be Unconsititutional

At the end of last year Michigan’s law makers presented a bill to Governor Synder which, among other things, made it unlawful to refuse not just the preliminary breath test (PBT), but also, the alphabet or walk and turn test as well.  This is because both fell under the aegis of the phrase “preliminary roadside analysis.”[i]  Specifically, PA 315 removed the phrase “preliminary breath test” and replaced it with the new phrase “preliminary roadside analysis.” According to the Act, the ... Read More »

Michigan’s New Drunk Driving Law Might Lead to More Acquittals

There has been quite a buzz around Michigan lately as the press is waking up to the fact that Michigan’s Legislators blew it last year when they amended the State’s drunk driving laws. Last October Michigan Public Act 315 was signed into law.  This new law, which became effective on January 12, 2015, makes all field sobriety tests inadmissible during the trial of an allegedly intoxicated driver. The law was drafted as part of compromise between those who wanted roadside ... Read More »

Felony DUI Law Coming to Colorado?

Last year, Senate Democrats in Colorado killed a bill that would have made repeat DUI offenses a felony offense in Colorado, much to the surprise and chagrin of the proposed law’s supporters. But now a Weld County state representative is trying again, with a new bill that, if passed, would classify a charged driver’s third DUI in seven years as a class 4 felony.  A class 4 felony carries a 2-6 year prison sentence followed by a mandatory 5 year period of parole.  The ... Read More »

How a DUI/DWI Will Impact Your Travel Plans to Canada

Under current Canadian law, a DUI or DWAI conviction in Colorado (or elsewhere in the U.S.) may make you a “criminally inadmissible person.” An “inadmissible person” cannot visit or stay in Canada because they have been convicted of certain crimes in, or outside of, Canada. Despite meeting eligibility requirements, foreign individuals from any country may still be criminally inadmissible to Canada due to previous criminal conduct, or the criminal conduct of their dependents. In particular, if you are convicted of a ... Read More »

Michigan Drivers Can No Longer Legally Refuse Field Sobriety Tests

If Governor Snyder signs House Enrolled Bill 5385, as expected, it will become unlawful in Michigan to refuse to submit to any sort of preliminary roadside analysis, including field sobriety testing.  The bill was presented to the Governor on October 7, 2014. As of the date of this writing, Michigan law provides that a police officer may require a driver  to submit to a preliminary chemical breath analysis if the officer has reasonable cause to believe that the person was ... Read More »

Southern Drawl or Alcohol?

Southern Drawl or Alcohol? Effects of One’s Speech on an Officer’s Perception of Their Soberness There is an array of characteristics that affect the cadence of one’s speech and their accent. Culture, heritage, geographical location, and education are all contributing factors to the way we speak. For example, it is a widespread stereotype that those from the Southern states of America are pegged with having a “drawl.” But is this endearing charm equivalent to signs that police officers often label ... Read More »

DWIs- Today’s Dangerous Politics

“In politics, stupidity is not a handicap.” -Napoleon Bonaparte Studying history helps to understand how governments utilize federal agencies, police departments, and courts to perpetuate illegal witch hunts for political causes. Let’s look at the 6 million Jews who were killed in Europe by the German government. People forget that it was not renegades who caused the Holocaust but the politicians and the courts. The parallels between the successful government campaigns of the Nazis in World War II and today’s DWI ... Read More »