DUI Trial Testimony: The Car Stop

by Jamison Koehler on September 4, 2013

Q:            Officer, you testified on direct that when you first saw my client, he was driving southbound on 7th Street?

A:            Yes.

Q:            You were driving northbound?

A:            Actually I was parked.  I was parked facing north.

Q:            When you first saw my client, he wasn’t speeding, right?

A:            Not that I’m aware, no.

Q:            He wasn’t swerving?

A:            No.

Q:            The only thing you noticed about him was that he driving with a broken headlight?

A:             Hm-hmm.

Q:            You have to answer yes or no.

A:            Yes.

Q:            Did you ever issue him a ticket for driving with a broken headlight?

A:            No.

Q:            You testified that he then made a left turn, a wide left turn, onto Q Street, right?

A:            Yes.

Q:            And he didn’t use his turn signal?

A:            Correct.

Q:            Did you ever issue him a ticket for turning without using a turn signal?

A:            I did not.

Q:            You testified that he had to jerk left, while turning, to avoid striking a parked car on Q Street, right?

A:            Correct.

Q:            Q Street goes eastbound, right?

A:            Yes.

Q:            One-way street?

A:            Hm-hmm.

Q:            One lane?

A:            Yes.

Q:            And at night there is parking on both sides of the street?

A:            To my knowledge.

Q:            Were you concerned about public safety when he made this wide left turn, almost hitting a parked car?

A:            It was late at night.  There was no one on the street.

Q:            Were you concerned about him hitting parked cars there on Q Street?

A:            Yes.  I guess so.

Q:            Were you concerned about him hurting himself?

A:            Yes.

Q:            And yet you waited two and a half blocks before you pulled him over?

A:            It wasn’t two and a half blocks.

Q:            Well, the next street over from 7th Street is Marion Street, right?

A:            Yes.

Q:            So it is one block on Q Street from 7th Street to Marion Street, right?

A:            Yes.

Q:            And then comes 6th Street, right?

A:            Hm-hmm.

Q:            And that is another block?

A:            It is a pretty short city block.

Q:            Is that a yes?

A:            Yes.

Q:            And then you testified on direct that he turned right onto 6th Street?

A:            Yes.

Q:            And that you stopped him halfway down that block?

A:            Maybe it wasn’t halfway down that block.

Q:            Was it longer than halfway down the block?  Shorter that that?

A:            It may have been shorter than that.  I remember he stopped in front of a convenience store right around there because the lighting was good.  And that was close to the corner.

Q:            Officer.  Should I do the math?

A:            I’m sorry?

Q:            Should I do the math?  Despite his wide left turn, and your concern for safety, you let him drive for another two and a half blocks before you pulled him over?

A:            Like I said.  It wasn’t two and a half blocks.

Q:            I see.

[pause]

Q:            And he pulled over right away?

A:            Yes.

Q:            And he had no problems finding a safe spot and pulling the car over?

A:            No.

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