OUI – Subsequent Offense
Police charged a man with Operating Under the Influence (subsequent offense). He was stopped while driving his friend’s vehicle. The friend was seated in the passenger seat. Police stopped the car due to a civil infraction, and specifically, a window tint violation. At the time of the stop, the police approached the vehicle and detected a strong odor of alcoholic beverage emanating from inside. The passenger was clearly intoxicated, slumped in his seat and fell asleep on scene. The motorist explained that he was lost and attempting to take his friend home.
Police detected a moderate odor of alcoholic beverage coming from the man’s breath. Police also observed the man to have bloodshot eyes and slurred speech. When asked if had consumed any alcohol, the man admitted to having consumed a 40 oz. bottle of beer earlier in the evening. The officer then asked the man to submit to a series of field sobriety tests and a chemical breath test. The man declined to take any tests. As a result, he was placed under arrest and charged with OUI. This was not his first offense.
The man retained Attorney Calcagni to represent him in this matter. After a series of unsuccessful pretrial negotiations, the man elected his right to a jury trial. At trial, the Defense called no witnesses. The prosecution called the two police officers that participated in the motor vehicle stop and subsequent arrest. Attorney Calcagni told the jurors from the outset that his client was a designed driver who was lost, tired and determined to drive his friend home one late night, but was thwarted by two police officers who jumped to conclusions by mistakenly determined that the man was operating under the influence of alcohol. Attorney Calcagni’s cross-examinations of both officers fully supported this theory of defense. After only minutes of deliberations, the jury delivered its verdict of not guilty.