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Tennessee DUI News

Strip Searched for a DUI Arrest?

According to Tennessee House Bill 275, which was introduced this year (2013), strip searches would be allowed regardless of the crime for which one is arrested.  This necessarily incorporates the crime of Driving Under the Influence.  Tennessee Code Annotated § 40-7-119 currently states, “(a) As used in this section, “strip search” means having an arrested person remove or arrange some or all of the person’s clothing so as to permit a visual inspection of the genitals, buttocks, anus, female breasts ... Read More »

Strange But True – DUI & A Toy Truck

Sometimes DUI defense lawyers come across a story that bears repeating–even at the expense of the poor defendant.  A Jonesboro, Arkansas woman crashed her Pontiac Grand Am into the panels beneath a trailer home. The woman, described by the owner of the damaged property as grossly intoxicated, then jumped into a child’s “Power Wheels” truck and tried to drive away.  Ultimately, she was arrested close by at her mother’s house where she registered .217% blood alcohol on a preliminary breath ... Read More »

Anticipated Changes in Tennessee DUI Legislation and Enforcement

In our efforts to monitor potential changes to the DUI laws in Tennessee, the lawyers at Oberman & Rice learned that yesterday (January 28, 2013), the Tennessee Department of Safety held a meeting to discuss the DUI Portion of the Governor’s new Safety Plan.  The non-technical portion of the plan reflects the following changes: 1) Future aggressive enforcement of DUI laws by a. An analysis of arrest location data to facilitate & maximize enforcement; and b. a 70% increase in ... Read More »

Clerical Error May Cause Wrongful Revocation of Driver’s License

On January 25, 2013 the Knoxville News Sentinel reported that this month, the Tennessee Department of Safety (TDOS) commenced driver license revocation actions against at least 1,279 people without proper legal justification.  According to this publication, an error occurred when Knox County officials submitted a list to the TDOS of people that had not timely paid their litigation taxes and/or fines (commonly referred to as “court costs”).  After receiving letters from the clerk’s office that noted a failure to pay ... Read More »

Drunk Driving or Distracted Driving?

The dangers posed by impaired drivers are widely recognized.  Drunk and drugged driving remains a significant problem and should not ignored.   Nevertheless, the lesser-known danger of distracted driving must be addressed as well.  Despite evidence that instances of injuries and death due to distracted driving have increased, public awareness and policy lag far behind awareness and policy for drunk driving. In 2009, 5,400 people died and another 448,000 were injured because of distracted drivers.[1]  Of the 5,400 deaths, 995 were ... Read More »

DUI Roadblocks and Sobriety Checkpoints

New Year’s Eve celebrations are almost upon us.  Alcohol consumption is often an integral part of these celebrations.  As a result, most law enforcement agencies, including the Tennessee Highway Patrol, the Knox County Sheriff’s Department and the Knoxville Police Department plan to increase enforcement during the holiday.   Like the majority of the nation, officers in the state of Tennessee will be conducting sobriety checkpoints (also known as DUI roadblocks) and driver license checkpoints from now through January 1, 2013. In ... Read More »

Drowsy or Drunk? More About Drowsy Driving

According to the AAA, Drowsy Driving causes nearly one out of six deadly traffic accidents and one out of eight crashes that results in a hospital visit.  Over 40% of drivers admit to having “fallen asleep or nodded off” while driving according to the AAA’s 2010 national survey of U.S. drivers.  Perhaps most alarming is the fact that these statistics may not reflect the full extent of the problem. Hyperarousal is one reason for the under-reporting of accidents that result ... Read More »

Tennessee Expungement Fees

Due to the new Tennessee expungement law (allowing for the erasure of an arrest or conviction from public record) effective July 1, 2012, there has been some confusion about how much a court clerk may charge to file an expungement petition.  In an effort to resolve the many questions relating to this issue, the State of Tennessee Attorney General’s Office issued Opinion Number 12–89.  This opinion provides a detailed analysis of how the Attorney General arrived at its answer, but ... Read More »

Butt-Chugging & Alcohol Enemas

During the last week, the news in Knoxville has focused on an unbelievably stupid or ignorant act by a  University of Tennessee fraternity member who, on  September 22nd, allegedly “consumed” alcohol by inserting a tube in his rectum and then pouring alcohol into the tube.  the student denied taking this action, but the University of Tennessee Police investigators found evidence of this action.  While few reports of similar incidents are made, this method of becoming intoxicated has been around for ... Read More »

Gastric Bypass Patients Beware!

Alcohol Consumption Affects Gastric Bypass Patients Differently. In 2011, the American College of Surgeons issued a press release reporting that patients who underwent a Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) operation had a considerably higher breath alcohol content based on the same amount of alcohol consumed prior to the operation.  Moreover, these patients took significantly more time to return to a sober state after the operation compared with alcohol levels tested prior to having the procedure. Patients undergoing a RYGB operation should ... Read More »