Plea deal in Castleton fatal car crash case – VTDigger

PLEA DEAL IN CASTLETON FATAL CAR CRASH CASE APR. 7, 2017, 5:20 AM BY ALAN J. KEAYS 3 COMMENTS A man charged in a single-vehicle crash that killed his girlfriend has reached a plea agreement that could let him avoid serving any time behind bars. The plea deal heads off a legal battle that had been brewing over the admissibility of a blood-test for alcohol impairment in light of a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling in a North Dakota drunken driving case.

Source: Plea deal in Castleton fatal car crash case – VTDigger

If you had your blood drawn, this case could be to your benefit.

College student from Greenville killed in DWI crash

College student from Greenville killed in DWI crash – A college student from Greenville was killed in a drunk driving accident Sunday night in Durham.Durham police say 18-year-old Myiah Andrews was a passenger in a vehicle that was struck head-on by a suspected drunk driver.The crash happened around 9:30 p.m. on East Greer Street.Natasha Taylor, 25, of Durham, has been charged with felony death by motor vehicle, driving while impaired and failing to maintain lane control.Andrews was a freshman pre-nursing major at North Carolina Central University and died at the scene. Pitt County Schools says she graduated from South Central High School in June.Three other NCCU students were in the vehicle with Andrews and were all injured in the crash.Taylor was jailed on a $250,000 bond and appeared before a judge Monday morning.”I would ask that you keep Ms. Andrews family, friends and classmates in your thoughts and prayers during their time of grief,” said NCCU Interim Chancellor Dr. Johnson Akinleye. “The sudden passing of a promising young person who was just beginning her journey is indeed heartbreaking and causes us to lean on one another for strength as members of a unified Eagle family.”

Source: College student from Greenville killed in DWI crash

Catholic priest charged with driving while intoxicated

Catholic priest charged with driving while intoxicated: Police charged Father Carlos Zuniga of St. Pius X Catholic Church in Weslaco, Texas with driving while intoxicated. (Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office)AAWESLACO, Texas (KGBT) – Police have charged a Catholic priest with driving while intoxicated.Officers arrested Father Carlos Zuniga of St. Pius X Catholic Church in Weslaco, according to Hidalgo County jail records.Zuniga is charged with driving while intoxicated, a Class B misdemeanor.Details about the arrest weren’t immediately available. CBS 4 News filed a request for the criminal complaint with the Weslaco Municipal Court.A spokeswoman for the Catholic Diocese of Brownsville couldn’t be reached for comment Monday afternoon. Zuniga didn’t respond to a message left at the church.An orphan who felt called to the priesthood at 8 years old, Zuniga served in south McAllen, Texas before moving to St. Pius, according to a story published by The Monitor newspaper. In September 2013, he was accused of inappropriately interfering in the Weslaco City Commission election by distributing fliers in the church bulletin. Zuniga said he simply wanted to draw attention to the city’s high water rates.Associate Municipal Judge Miguel Wise set a $5,000 personal recognizance bond for Zuniga.Officers booked Zuniga at the Hidalgo County jail at 12:30 p.m. Monday. He was released at 2:02 p.m.

Source: Catholic priest charged with driving while intoxicated | KGBT

Former governor’s son cannot recall details before car crash

Former governor’s son cannot recall details before car crash— A former Oregon governor’s teenage son who pleaded guilty to driving under the influence of intoxicants and assault says he cannot remember what caused him to swerve into the opposing traffic, causing a car crash along the coast.Logan Kitzhaber, 19, told police he was driving a car registered under his father’s name to go play miniature golf in Lincoln City. Kitzhaber said he had only been driving for 15 minutes before the crash in 2016.Kitzhaber told officials that he had been smoking marijuana the night before and remembered drinking a beer before he started driving. Hospital records do not show alcohol in the teen’s blood test.Motorcyclists said they had seen the teen drive aggressively and erratically while he tried to pass cars in a two-lane highway, according to police reports. A witness said after the teen passed him, he clipped a road barrel. Other drivers reported having to swerve out of Kitzhaber’s way to avoid a crash.Kitzhaber pleaded guilty and was sentenced March 27 to seven days in jail and five years of probation. He was also ordered to undergo drug and alcohol treatment and his license was suspended for five years.PauseCurrent Time 0:00/Duration Time 0:00Loaded: 0%Progress: 0%0:00Fullscreen00:00MuteLincoln County Deputy District Attorney Kylie Andrisa declined to comment on the case.Get news headlines sent daily to your inbox Sign Up!The Washington couple whose motorhome Kitzhaber crashed into survived the incident, but say they were left badly injured and traumatized.

Source: Former governor’s son cannot recall details before car crash | State and Regional | gazettetimes.com

Denmark: Men whose car smashed into WWII memorial charged with drug-driving – Yahoo

Denmark: Men whose car smashed into WWII memorial charged with drug-driving Police in Denmark have charged two men with driving under the influence of drugs after their car crashed into a war memorial. Neither would say who was driving when they crashed into the WWII memorial at Fovrfeld Gravlund cemetery in Esbjerg, Jutland – so police charged them both. The men drove down a no-through road and onto grass before hitting the war memorial, causing considerable damage to the memorial. TheLocal website reports the memorial consists of a bronzed relief and vertical stones with names inscribed on them. Police believe the men were trying to find a short cut.”They continued to drive over the lawn and into the monument,” said South Jutland Police duty officer Erik Lindholdt. “Many of the stones are lying in pieces at the scene.”

Both men were charged with driving under the influence of narcotics and have had their blood tested. If found guilty they could both face a three-year driving ban. They will also have to pay a hefty bill for damages.

Denmark’s “zero tolerance” approach to driving under the influence has caused controversy as special “narkometers” used to detect traces can identify cannabis use eight weeks after taking the drug. Civil rights campaigners say the narkometers are being used to “harass” dope smokers who might not be affected by the drug when they are non longer taken,

Fovrfeld Gravlund is Denmark’s largest war cemetery and lists the names of locals who died during the conflict and German occupation. According to the tourist website, “1150 allied airmen and German soldiers and 151 German refugees from 2. World War have found their last resting place in Esbjerg.”

Source: Denmark: Men whose car smashed into WWII memorial charged with drug-driving – Yahoo

Drunk Driver Sideswipes Tree: Police – East Hampton, NY Patch

The drunk driver, arrested Sunday morning, had two prior convictions in the past 10 years, police said.

EAST HAMPTON, NY — A Sagaponack woman drove drunk and sideswiped a tree, police said.

According to East Hampton Town Police, Kiera A. Egan, 29, was arrested on Sunday at 11:10 a.m. on Daniels Hole Road and charged with aggravated DWI: Per Se, .18 of 1 percent or more alcohol, two prior convictions within 10 years, a felony; using a leased, rented or loaned vehicle without an interlock device, a misdemeanor, first degree aggravated unlicensed operation, commit aggravated unlicensed operation 2/alcohol or drug, a felony, and DWI, two prior convictions of designated offenses within 10 years, a felony, police said.

Egan was driving a 2008 Pontiac northwest on Daniels Hole Road when she was in a crash where she left the roadway and sideswiped a tree, police said.

Source: Drunk Driver Sideswipes Tree: Police – East Hampton, NY Patch

Sterling man charged with DUI, possession of controlled substance | LoudounTimes.com

Sterling man charged with DUI, possession of controlled substance: A Sterling man was arrested Saturday morning after running his car into a gully and trying to walk away from the scene.Binyam Yilma, 27, of Sterling, was located by Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office deputies near Cascades Parkway and Potomac View Road around 2:30 a.m. Saturday. Yilma was arrested and charged with two counts of possession of a controlled substance, driving under the influence, refusal of a breath test and driving on a suspended or revoked license.

Source: Sterling man charged with DUI, possession of controlled substance | LoudounTimes.com

C.A. Again Upholds Deputy P.D.’s Driver’s License Suspension

Says Agreeing to a Blood Test, Conditioned on Officers Obtaining a Warrant, Does Not Meet Requirements of Implied Consent Law; No Excuse Seen for Refusing Breath Test

 

A deputy public defender, who won a rehearing in the Court of Appeal following its Jan. 12 decision upholding a one-year suspension of her driver’s license for failing to submit to a chemical test to determine her blood alcohol content, fared no better on Friday, with the Fourth District’s Div. Two again affirming the trial court’s denial of a writ of administrative mandamus.

The Department of Motor Vehicles properly ordered the license suspension even though motorist Bernice Espinoza agreed to a test of her blood, Justice Art McKinster said in the old and the new opinions in the case, because she conditioned her consent on the California Highway Patrol obtaining a search warrant, and did not give consent to a breath test.

Espinoza—who then worked for the Riverside Public Defender’s Office and now is a deputy public defender in Sonoma County—told officers that she knew the law, and that under the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2013 opinion in Missouri v. McNeely, they were obliged to obtain a search warrant.

That case, McKinister pointed out, dealt with nonconsensual searches.

In  Friday’s opinion, he added a footnote spelling out that a Vehicle Code section “requires a motorist to consent in writing to submit to chemical testing or to a preliminary alcohol screening test, when requested by a peace officer, as a condition of obtaining or renewing a California driver’s license.”

Supreme Court Opinion

In both the Jan. 12 opinion and the little-changed one filed Friday, McKinster made note of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision last year in Birchfield v. North Dakota. He wrote:

“[A]s the Supreme Court clearly held in Birchfield, the Fourth Amendment does not prohibit the police from forcing a motorist to submit to a warrantless breath test incident to his or her arrest, the motorist has no right to refuse to submit to a breath test or to condition his or her submission on the police obtaining a warrant, and the motorist’s refusal to submit to the breath test may be the basis of criminal penalties….In light of that clear holding, we conclude refusal to submit to a breath test incident to arrest may also be the basis of imposing civil penalties under the implied consent law, including suspension or revocation of the motorist’s driver’s license.”

In a new passage, the jurist said:

“Prior to issuance of the decision in Birchfield, we would have agreed with the Department that Espinoza’s refusal to submit to a blood test would have been a sufficient basis for her license suspension, and we would have had no need to address breath tests. But…it is unclear whether the high court would approve of a civil license suspension based solely on a motorist’s refusal to submit to a warrantless blood test. Therefore, we err on the side of caution and affirm the suspension based on Espinoza’s refusal to submit to a breath test.”

References to Crying

The prior opinion said:

“Espinoza’s crying, her initial refusal to get out of her vehicle, her complete refusal to answer field sobriety questions or to perform field sobriety tests, and her repeated requests to be let off with a citation, were additional factors a reasonable officer could properly consider when determining whether there was probable cause to believe Espinoza drove while under the influence of alcohol.”

In the rewritten test, reference to her “crying” was omitted, though the opinion still relates that Espinoza “was crying and very emotional the whole time” an officer spoke with her following the traffic stop. Gonzalez spoke to her.

The case is Espinoza v. Shiomoto, 2017 S.O.S. 1609.

 

Copyright 2017, Metropolitan News Company

 

Source: Metropolitan News-Enterprise Online

The items cited in the opinion by themselves would not satisfy probable cause for an officer in Colorado to request a test. If you add an odor of alcohol, bloodshot eyes and slurred speech, then there would be.

Driver tries to evade police, crashes into Hillcrest building – The San Diego Union-Tribune

Driver tries to evade police, crashes into Hillcrest building.  A man was seriously hurt when his car plowed into a building in Hillcrest as he tried to elude police Tuesday night.He ran away but didn’t get far before officers arrested him, police said.An officer had stopped the vehicle on Park Boulevard south of Robinson Avenue after the suspect drove past a road-closed sign, police Officer John Buttle said.As the officer walked up to the car, the driver sped away, and a brief pursuit ensued.

Source: Driver tries to evade police, crashes into Hillcrest building – The San Diego Union-Tribune

The problem with America’s marijuana DUI laws: science

The problem with America’s marijuana DUI laws: scienceEVERYONE CAN AGREE THAT DRIVING WHILE STONED IS DANGEROUS, BUT HOW DO STATES REMEDY THE FLAWED SCIENCE BEHIND MARIJUANA DRUG TESTS? You have people that are just baked’ Singh rolled a “fat blunt” before he hit the slopes at Lake Tahoe on a sunny Wednesday morning.By the end of the day, he needed a refill, so he drove to Reno and stopped at one of the local medical marijuana dispensaries. With his Patagonia jacket and bleached-blond man-bun, Singh was eager to head to his hotel and smoke.The only reason he wouldn’t be smoking while driving to the hotel was because he believes Nevada cops are stricter than the ones in the Bay Area.“Yeah, I roll my blunts while I’m driving. I smoke while I’m driving,” said Singh, 26, who owns a logistics business and a “party bus” in Oakland, Calif. “I don’t get high after two blunts. I just get tired and lazy.”With the passage of recreational marijuana in November, Nevada is grappling with questions of how to handle the issue of driving while stoned. And while driving high is still illegal, determining what exactly constitutes “high” is not as easy as it sounds.Just how much pot is an ounce? Watch our explainer:CLOSESince Nevada legalized recreational marijuana, anyone 21 and over can possess up to 1 ounce in-state. How many people actually could look at an ounce and identify it, though? We’re here to help educate you.Jenny Kane/RGJAmong states with legal recreational marijuana, Nevada has the strictest limit on how much of the chemical THC can be in the bloodstream — the weed equivalent of blood-alcohol content — before the driver is considered impaired. Nevada’s limit is even lower than the federal standard for Department of Transportation employees.But catching drugged drivers has become more complicated since recreational marijuana became legal in January across the state.No real-time, accurate test exists.  Officers have no accurate Breathalyzer test; blood, urine and saliva tests exist but are imperfect.On top of that, no scientific evidence backs up that a specific amount of marijuana in a person’s system means impairment. That means that limits for marijuana similar to those for alcohol use can be problematic.“You have people that are just baked, they have that Spicoli persona and yet they ace the driving test. You have others who are totally sober and they flunk that blood test,” said Chris Halsor, a former Colorado prosecutor currently serving as Nevada’s temporary traffic safety resource prosecutor.Nevada law says that anyone with 2 nanograms of marijuana in their system while driving is impaired.Critics of the limit point out that it’s so low that people who have smoked marijuana in the distant past but are not impaired could be convicted of DUI under the current law.However, advocates of the limit point out that driving under the influence cases involving marijuana are already difficult to prove and a limit is necessary.Despite the inconsistencies, states must adapt, Halsor said. It’s an issue every state that legalizes marijuana faces, finding varying solutions.“You have to go into every case being able to prove impairment without toxicology,” Halsor said.A legal puzzleThe question of marijuana DUIs has been at the forefront of bipartisan discussions among lawmakers since Nevadans voted in November to legalize recreational marijuana. Anyone 21 and over can possess up to 1 ounce of recreational marijuana, even though it remains a federal offense.Medical marijuana has been legal in Nevada since 2000, and recreational marijuana officially became legal as of Jan. 1, though it is still a misdemeanor to drive under the influence of marijuana and can be a felony depending on circumstances.Just as Nevada has a .08 blood alcohol limit, the state also has a 2 nanograms per milliliter of blood limit for marijuana. Colorado and Washington’s limit is 5 nanograms.Most states and Washington, D.C., that have legalized recreational marijuana — California, Oregon, Massachusetts, Maine, and Alaska — have no set limit. States without set limits also establish that impaired driving is illegal and can be proven by a defendant’s behavior and statements at the time of arrest.“States are trying to figure out what is a fair nanogram limit – what should they use for guidance, and should we have a nanogram limit? Neither is good, right? I don’t think it’s appropriate to institute a rule that doesn’t work. I don’t understand the point of having a limit if that doesn’t tell you what you need to know,” said Dr. Ryan Vandrey, associate professor of behavioral pharmacology research at Johns Hopkins University Medical School in Baltimore. “If you are going to punish people for not being under the influence of a drug that you just legalized, that’s not fair. You can’t take corrective action.”While it would seem logical to model drugged driving laws after existing

Source: The problem with America’s marijuana DUI laws: science