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January 2013 Archives

Testing the tests: blood sample fermentation as a DUI defense

Being taken into custody after an accident and having your blood sampled for possible DUI charges will naturally make you feel helpless, even if you're sure you weren't intoxicated -- but the outcome of the blood test is not always the final word in the story. In a Vermont criminal DUI case currently moving through the courts, a forensic pathologist consulted by the defense has raised new questions about the manner in which the driver's blood was tested. Forensic pathologists are medical specialists who investigate the circumstances of sudden or accidental deaths.

MADD in Court

Mothers Against Drunk Driving ("MADD") was created with a noble purpose "to reduce the number of deaths, injuries and accidents caused by drunk drivers". No one could or can argue against that objective and MADD has evolved into a strong force in Congress and state legislature so that every politician is afraid to deny their requests for increased punishment for D.U.I. offenders and additional funding for its objectives. Tennessee, in 1982, passed one of the toughest D.U.I. laws in America and it has steadily been toughened despite only the opposition of the liquor, beer and wine industry and criminal trial lawyers lumped in with the social media advertising, personal injury lawyers who have drastically lowered the image of attorneys in the eyes of the public.

Drivers try to prevent DUI arrests with personal breath tests

What is in your glove compartment? Perhaps you have a pack of gum in there. Maybe you have some gloves, a checkbook, a pair of sunglasses and various writing utensils. If you are like a growing number of motorists, you might have something a bit more interesting: a breathalyzer test.

Out of State DUI Convictions

Many drivers erroneously believe that an out-of-state D.U.I. conviction will not adversely affect their driving privileges in Tennessee. This unfortunately is incorrect for several reasons. For one, Tennessee has a statute which states that conviction in another state for D.U.I. which has a 'similar' D.U.I. statute can be used to revoke driving privileges in Tennessee. Secondly, Tennessee's statute states that conviction in another state for D.U.I. can be used to enhance any subsequent D.U.I. conviction in Tennessee to a higher mandatory sentence.

Distracted Driving

The latest tactic promoted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in its campaign "to save lives and cut down on traffic accidents" -- and possibly get an increase in its $931,000,000 yearly budget (FY 2013) from Congress and to give Tennessee $16,500,00.00 under the Governor's Highway Safety Office -- is its emphasis on "distracted driving". See http://www.distraction.gov/.

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