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Author Archives: John Schleiffarth

John Schleiffarth

Missouri’s Open Container Law Has Surprising Results

Missouri has not criminalized open containers of alcohol in vehicles on state roads. The result has surprised some safety experts. Instead of an increase in highway motor vehicle fatalities, Missouri’s roads have become safer. They have become safer than other states. Federal dollars earmarked for road construction have been forced to be re-allocated toward highway safety projects in Missouri. The federal government attaches strings to its spending measures. Missouri has not complied. Missouri’s gamble has paid off. The current penalty ... Read More »

Missouri DWI Lab Testing is Weak on Standards

In Missouri driving while intoxicated (DWI) cases, police officers are required to follow certain standards. Standards are in place in an attempt to bring some degree of scientific certainty to testing procedures. Breath testing machines have been subject to weak oversight regarding testing standards. The result can be wrongful convictions. The Missouri Code of State Regulations (19 CSR 25-30) specifies the standards that should be followed when testing the accuracy of breath testing devices. If the standards are not followed, ... Read More »

Recent DWI Trends in Missouri- Alcohol and Drug Impairment

According to recently released statistics from the Missouri State Highway Patrol (MSHP), Missouri roads were safer this New Year’s holiday compared to last year. There were zero deaths on the road this year and no injuries. There were 11 deaths were recorded last year. Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) arrests by Highway Patrol troopers were markedly lower than last year. Troopers made 56 arrests for DWI in 2020. Last year, troopers made 130 arrests. Sgt. Jeff Kinder of the MSHP credits ... Read More »

Unconscious Consent

Our right to be free of unreasonable searches and seizures just moved a step closer to extinction. The most recent U.S. Supreme court case to carve deeper into the Bill of Rights was Mitchell v. Wisconsin. DUI laws in most states allow a person to refuse a chemical test of their breath or blood although there is typically a civil penalty (ie. potential loss of driving privileges). On June 27th the United States Supreme Court ruled that Gerard Mitchell’s blood ... Read More »

Outdated Breathalyzer Keeps Police Work Cheap in St. Louis

DWI enforcement in St. Louis, Missouri, has come to rely increasingly on the estimated Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) number produced by an aging technology. The Alco-Sensor IV (ASIV), manufactured by Intoximeters, is a portable breathalyzer device used by police officers to test driver’s the police suspect are intoxicated. At 1/3 the price of other evidentiary devices, police departments love the ASIV. The other advantage St. Louis area police find in the ASIV is that it is portable. All other evidentiary ... Read More »

No Refusal DWI Counties Expose Untrained Officers

Since January of 2014 the City of St. Louis has practiced a policy of “No Refusals” when requesting a breath test for a DWI suspect. Franklin County, Missouri, has adopted the same policy. This policy of no refusal to breath tests can help the defendant in many cases. If a driver is suspected of DWI, the police officer making the arrest will apply for a search warrant to authorize an involuntary blood draw if the driver refuses to submit to ... Read More »