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Wednesday, July 24, 2013

When Can I Be Charged with Fleeing a Peace Officer in a Motor Vehicle?

It's  a felony offense in Minnesota for a driver to flee or to attempt to flee a police officer who is lawfully discharging his official duties when the driver knows or  reasonably  should know that he is being  pursued by a police officer.  The case normally begins by the officer attempting to execute a stop for  a traffic violation, a cancelled  or revoked driver's license, or for an outstanding warrant. The case usually involves  a driver increasing his speed to well over 100 mph combined with evasive driving conduct over a considerable distance.    The driver may eventually be stopped and arrested by the police or he may escape and avoid capture. If the suspect is arrested after the chase,  police will establish the identity of the driver. If the driver escapes, the police will follow up their investigation by using the plate number on the vehicle to track  the suspect to his residence for questioning in order to determine if he was the driver. 
The defense in a fleeing a peace officer case may focus on any of the following legal issues: (1) did the driver intentionally flee or attempt to flee the police officer; (2) was the officer lawfully discharging his official duty; (3) did the driver know or should he have known that he was being pursued by a police officer; and (4) was the suspect the same person who drove the vehicle on the date of the offense. If a suspect who escaped police pursuit is eventually caught, the police will attempt to gain an admission from him that he was in fact the driver. The suspect at this point should exercise his constitutional right to remain silent and refuse to answer any questions from the police or police investigators. The suspect in a fleeing case should never discuss the facts of the case with any third person as they could potentially testify against him at trial regarding his statements. Please  do not discuss your case on a jailhouse phone as the conversation may be recorded. 
If you, or someone you know, has been arrested for fleeing a police officer in a motor vehicle, call Minneapolis criminal defense attorney Robert J. Shane now for the "Best Defense"  at (612) 339-1024. Mr. Shane has been defending the freedom of the accused since 1983.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

The Best Defense in a Minnesota DWI Case

If your criminal defense attorney is  able to suppress the use of the blood, breath or urine test results  in your Minnesota DWI case, you will have found the key to winning your case. The use of a chemical test result by the prosecution is critical to a successful DWI prosecution. 

How does an experienced DWI attorney suppress the chemical test result? The defense lawyer will   file a motion with the court requesting that  the chemical test result not be allowed to be used  against you  at trial  on the grounds that the test result was obtained in violation of the Fourth Amendment.   What does the suppression of the chemical test for intoxication mean for your case? If the judge grants the motion to suppress the evidence, the prosecution  will lose the use of powerful scientific evidence to prove your intoxication at trial. The only evidence left  over  will be your driving conduct,  field sobriety test result, if any,  and statements you may have made about  alcohol or drug use. You now have plea bargaining strength and a chance for an acquittal at trial.

How were my Fourth Amendment rights violated by the police? There are only two ways the police can obtain a warrantless search for  blood alcohol concentration or the presence of a controlled substance in your body. The first is by obtaining your consent to conduct a warrantless search. The  second is by proving emergency conditions existed at the time of arrest which would justify the police in not first obtaining a search warrant from a judge. If the police did  not obtain your consent to search and there was no emergency circumstance,  police must first obtain a search warrant. If they failed to do so, your Fourth Amendment rights were violated. 

If you, or someone you know, has been charged with a Minnesota DWI, call Minneapolis DWI defense attorney Robert J. Shane for the Best Defense  at (612) 339-1024 or visit his website for more information at