November 6, 2009
What Do You Know About OVI?
~ written by Cleve Johnson
"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." – Mark Twain
Whichever side of the case we are on, we believe certain things about the breath testing machines. For example, does sucking in on the breath tube cause an invalid sample? How about stopping and starting breathing? Can breathing patterns affect the test result even absent stopping and starting? Does the 20 minute rule solve all mouth alcohol problems? Can radio frequency interference occur without keying a radio or some other such device? Is it really possible that the new machines are worse than the old machines?
See for yourself at a Columbus Bar CLE, December 3. The seminar will be in two parts. You may attend the morning session, afternoon session, or both. We will have a live demonstration and perform a number of experiments regarding these and other common breath-testing issues that arise in OVI cases.
We make decisions about people’s lives based upon certain assumptions about the machine; perhaps there is an ethical duty to see if those assumptions are correct. To paraphrase Colonel Jessep, “Can you handle the truth?”
If you don’t come, does that mean the answer is no? Keep in mind that the truth may not go your way whichever side you’re on. Just like live demonstrations in science class, experiments don’t necessarily turn out the way people expect them to. If you are on the prosecution side, feel free to bring your own machines along. If Vega is right and they are foolproof, this is your chance to show defense attorneys that they don’t know what they are talking about.
Are you confident that you never miss anything when you look at log books? If you have never done this, would you like some practical tips on how to go about it? Keep up do date with the case law, including the implications of Melendez-Diaz. Learn about the October 16, 2009 amendments to the driving under suspension statutes. Know what to do if you are threatened with an increased sentence for going to trial. Get up to speed with electronic filing in Municipal Court.
Felony OVI is a different creature. For example, when the specification and the element are the same, how do you know if a specification is properly charged? What are the different mandatory minimums? What is the rule on consecutive and concurrent sentences? Can judicial release be applicable? Learn how the specification can be leveraged to discourage trials. Where can the time be served? What considerations are involved where OVI is a predicate for vehicular homicide or assault? Judge Charles Schneider will answer these and other questions.
Looking for ethics, professionalism, and substance abuse credit that isn’t unnecessary (except for credit) and boring? On the theory that you can’t persuade if you don’t understand the perspective of the other side, this seminar will attempt to get both prosecutors and defense attorneys to attend and understand each other better.
Lara Baker and a panel of prosecutors will speak about: What Prosecutors Want Defense Attorneys To Know. The flip side will also be presented from the defense perspective. Participation by attendees is encouraged. For a change, substance abuse will be presented Mickey Presley – an OVI lawyer who has served as both a prosecutor and a defense attorney.
Presenters will include: Lara, Baker, Kenneth Bossin, Larry Denny, Sean Dominy, Rob Calesaric, Dennis Evans, Mark Gardner, David Griffith, Tim Huey, Cleve Johnson, Joseph Mas, Mickey Presley, Terrance Rudes, Judge Charles Schneider, Alfred Staubus, John Saia, and Lori Tyack.
Register online at www.cbalaw.org/cle or call 614/221.4112.