DUI Lawyers Get No Respect

Jamison KoehlerDUI and Driving Offenses

I am attending the “Mastering Scientific Evidence” for DUI cases sponsored by the National College for DUI Defense (NCDD) and the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association (TCDLA).  New Orleans is a wonderfully decadent city:  It is fun to see tourists strolling down Bourbon Street with Mardi Gras beads and a large, fluorescent-colored drink at 10:00 am in the morning. For …

Ready for DUI/DWI Appeals in D.C.

Jamison KoehlerAppellate Practice, DUI and Driving Offenses

It is amazing to me there aren’t more appellate DUI/DWI decisions in D.C. Yes, a recent case – Taylor v. District of Columbia – dealt with the legal definition of impairment. Beyond that, however, there are few cases in an area of the law that is in urgent need of reform. Take existing case law on the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus Test.  …

U.S. Capitol building

No More Weekends in DUI Cases

Jamison KoehlerDUI and Driving Offenses, Sentencing

Always looking out for the best interests of clients, Michael Bruckheim has come up with a creative way for getting around the new requirement in D.C. that mandatory days of incarceration in DUI cases be served back-to-back. According to the new law that took effect in August 2012, second-time DUI offenders who are sentenced to a mandatory-minimum period of incarceration …

D.C. skyline

DUI Trial Testimony: Basis for Car Stop

Jamison KoehlerDUI and Driving Offenses, Trial Advocacy

Q:            Officer, as I understand it, you were parked behind my client at the intersection of 19th and M Streets northwest? A:            Yes. Q:            And there were two reasons you decided to pull him over? A:            Yes. Q:            The first reason was that he didn’t pull forward immediately when the light turned green? A:            Yes, I was concerned that – …

U.S. Capitol building

DUI Trial Transcript: One-Leg Stand

Jamison KoehlerDUI and Driving Offenses, Trial Advocacy

Q:            Turning your attention now, Officer, to the one-leg stand. A:            Okay. Q:            Mr. Jones had you step into the well of the court and demonstrate how you delivered the instructions on the night in question. A:            Yes, sir. Q:            And, in fact, you were speaking so quickly that the stenographer had to interrupt you.  She had to tell you …

U.S. Capitol Building

DUI Trial Testimony: Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus

Jamison KoehlerDUI and Driving Offenses, Trial Advocacy

BY DEFENSE ATTORNEY Q:            Now, officer, turning to the HGN? A:            Yes. Q:            The horizontal gaze nystagmus? A:            Yes. Q:            It’s fair to say that you are not an opthamologist? A:            That’s right. Q:            Or an optometrist? A:            No. Q:            Or an optician? A:            No.  I am not. Q.            But, according to the government, you are an expert in the …

Aerial view of DC

DUI Trial Testimony: The Car Stop

Jamison KoehlerDUI and Driving Offenses, Trial Advocacy

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. …

U.S. Capitol Building

Classic D.C. Trial Transcript: Key on St. Ledger, Part II

Jamison KoehlerDUI and Driving Offenses, Trial Advocacy

BY MR. KEY: Q:  When was the last time this particular machine, the one in Government’s Exhibit Number 4, was actually calibrated? A:  You mean auto-cal’d?  Are you talking recertified or auto-cal’d? Q:  All of them. You tell me when is the last time you calibrated this machine? A:  That machine I haven’t calibrated. Q:  So, when was the last …

U.S. Capitol building

Classic D.C. Trial Transcript: Thomas Key on William St. Ledger, Part I

Jamison KoehlerDUI and Driving Offenses, Trial Advocacy

In 2010, Thomas Key and Bryan Brown almost single-handedly dismantled the Metropolitan Police Department’s DUI program through a series of remarkable revelations about the inadequacies of the program. In 2011, the two defense attorneys set their sights on the program run by U.S. Capitol Police.  Here is Thomas Key cross-examining U.S. Capitol Police Officer William St. Ledger on a sign that …