I don’t trust authority. Nor, the government. So, I defend those who seem doomed. For me, popularity isn’t as important as doing the right thing. There’s a trend taking away your rights in DUI law. I’m fighting it. In a recent DUI jury trial in Savannah, Georgia I helped a girl named Claire. I talked to the jury like they were folks on the post office corner. This is about what I said…
What did the prosecutor leave out? Why did he leave it out? What does this say about reasonable doubt? What did the prosecutor leave out? Why did he leave it out? What does this say about reasonable doubt?
One thing the prosecutor did not mention is that the officer testified in a preliminary hearing just two months after he arrested Claire and he admitted on cross-examination that he did not know what the time rates were for the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus Field Sobriety evaluation. The time rates are the key to performing the test. The officer just did his own eye test and decided Claire failed that.
Another big thing they didn’t tell you is that the officer knew Claire had back problems. The officer is trained to not do the field sobriety evaluations if you have back problems. But he did them here. Then he said she failed.
Another point the prosecutor did not tell you is that Claire walked normally during normal activities. The officer told you that people under the influence of alcohol often have trouble walking. Did the prosecutor just forget to tell you about this? Or is it possible that they did not want you to think that Claire walked fine? Were they afraid that this might create a reasonable doubt in your mind?
Another thing that the prosecutor did not mention is that the police officer left this out of his report. If the officer is just fair and unbiased, if he is just giving you the facts, why did he leave this out of his report? Can you really rely on reports or witnesses that only give you one side of the story?
Use your common sense. It is just not possible for Claire to have been under the influence when she forgot to signal, but normal a few seconds later when she walked around the side of the car. If alcohol was the problem, it should have been present in her legs as well as her arms. What this shows you is that the failure to signal was created by something other than alcohol.
The prosecutor said Claire had bloodshot eyes. Why didn’t they tell you that she has allergies? You think they left the allergies part out because it’s not important? Or could they have left it out because they didn’t want you to think there was a reasonable doubt about whether bloodshot eyes were a sign of intoxication?
The prosecutor listed five things that they claim shows Claire was under the influence. They argue that it cannot be a coincidence that these five things are here. What they did not do is list the 55 clues to intoxication from the officer’s manual that were not here. For proof beyond a reasonable doubt, they should have more than 5 of 60. Have they given you proof beyond a reasonable doubt when 55 out of 60 clues aren’t here?
Claire looked normal. She acted normal. So, she probably is normal. The cop’s opinion that Claire was under the influence was wrong, just like his administration of the field sobriety evaluations.
The prosecution is biased. The officer is biased. The prosecution is hiding things here that are inconsistent with intoxication. I am not saying the officer is a liar, but I think you are entitled to an explanation of why many of the statements in his report don’t go along with the video.
In America, before they can destroy your life, they have the burden of proof. A girl’s life is on the line. Matching Claire up against the government isn’t a fair fight. The State of Georgia can pay lawyers to fight as long as it takes. They can make sure their lawyers are well-trained. Do they need an investigator to help make their case and testify? They’ll pay for it. Do they need to talk to an expert? They can afford it. They can afford tests and machines that Claire and I don’t have access to. They can double-team her with police officers so that it’s two against one in court. They can double team her with lawyers. So….is this a fair fight?
The State of Georgia has to rule out every reasonable doubt in this case. You have all heard this before. The government must rule out everything but alcohol as a cause. We don’t have to prove anything else was a cause.
The things Claire did right show that the things she did wrong were not caused by alcohol. Their case sucks! I am confident you will go find Claire not guilty. Find her not guilty. Let her go home.
The Chatham County jury found her not guilty of DUI less safe.
If there’s a magic in DUI lawyering, it’s the magic of fighting battles beyond endurance. Beyond ability. It’s the magic of risking everything for a dream that nobody sees but you.