Blaine DUI Case Study
Charge: 2nd Degree DUI
In June of 2014 my client was charged with a 2nd Degree Gross Misdemeanor DUI in Blaine, Minnesota. He served four days in jail at the time of his arrest and was released on a $12,000.00 bail bond.
He was stopped by police because he allegedly ran a red light and pulled up on the sidewalk when stopped. He tested over .20 with an actual reading of .23. He had a prior offense in 2011 and since his test was over .20 his charge was enhanced to a 2nd Degree Gross Misdemeanor offense.
After reviewing all of the reports it was determined that his only potential defense was his qualifying prior DUI was in another state. While this was not a strong argument it was all that was available so I utilized it in an effort to get a favorable resolution to his case. Based on the facts it was clear that the officer had a reasonable suspicion to stop the vehicle and to request alcohol testing.
I recommended my client get an alcohol assessment and start following the recommendations in an effort to proactively show how serious he was taking the case.
Based on my argument that his prior offense was potentially not a qualifying incident I was able to persuade the prosecutor to agree to a cap of 30 days in jail when the cap for a 2nd Degree Gross Misdemeanor DUI can be 90 days in jail. A cap means that the most jail time the judge can sentence the defendant to is the cap number. For instance in this case my client could only be sentenced to 30 days in jail because that was the cap. The maximum penalty for my client was a year in jail and/or a $3000 fine.
Fortunately I was able to resolve his case below the cap of 30 – 90 days of jail time. I was able to resolve the case with the judge ordering no additional jail time and two years of probation and a small fine.
Impact (No Additional Jail)
My client was very pleased with the resolution. This result was extremely positive since the legislature mandates a minimum of thirty days in jail and a $900 fine for his offense and he could have been facing 90 days in jail for a 2nd Degree Gross Misdemeanor DUI conviction. No matter how bad the facts of the case appear there is nearly always a way to present the case in a manner that allows your client to manage the consequences of the incident.