Gary S. Bernstein, P.A.

Call Toll-Free: 866-435-2795

Locally at: 410-415-9219

Posts Tagged ‘Baltimore County DUI’

Baltimore County Not Guilty

I finally got to try a case that was almost a year old and had been snowed out twice.  I had commented on this case when I did the MVA Hearing and the officer denied my client a phone call to her attorney, and the ALJ took no action.  Today we showed up with our three witnesses and credit card receipts to attest to the amount of alcohol consumed.  They never got on the stand.  The officer could not remember simple facts and could not identify the photos of the street and sidewalk where the SFSTs were requested to be performed.  I took the clear copy of the mugshot from the State, and introduced it to show my client looked better than she did in court.  Obviously bright eyed and no sign of impairment.  Take a look on line of Nick Nolte's mugshot, and you see what really f…ed up looks like.

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A Nice Thank You

When I got out of court today, I had this email.  I have redacted the name and employer, but if you do these cases correctly, this should happen:

Hello Gary,

I would like to thank you for everything you have done for me.  You helped me turn a troubling time around, and I have grown exponentially as a person.  Today I accepted a full time job with_____, a government agency that works ________.  I am very excited and grateful for your part in getting me this job.  I have to pass a security clearance, and as you recommended I was honest about my DWI, and they said it shouldn't be a problem.  Once again thank you so much, and perhaps when I am back in Towson I can take you out to lunch, assuming you ever get some free time.

 

Seminar for District Court Public Defenders

I have been contacted by two separate supervisors in Baltimore City to give a DUI and Serious Traffic Seminar to their new District Court lawyers.  DUI is more complicated than many other types of criminal cases.  The science and the technical aspects are different than in a drug case or assault, or theft case.  The issues with charging documents comes up more in traffic matters.  If you do not know the law and the rules of criminal procedure, you wind up being bullied by the judges and the prosecutors.  Because of the sentencing difficulties with so many judges in the City, you have to avoid them by demanding a jury trial, otherwise you are looking at an appeal.  I file a written demand so that I do not get locked in to the District Court or waste a morning going to court for a 30 second proceeding.  The public defenders can read the judge's schedule just like everyone else.  If they want to stop being treated like door mats, they have to file written demands when they can see there is no reason to keep the case in the District.  If the entire docket is wiped out, so be it.  You have to represent your client whether you are getting paid by them or the State.  You also do not have to agree to amendments to charging documents that change the character of the offense.  Make them dismiss the case and write your client the correct ticket, unless you are going to be able to get a favorable result in front of this particular judge.  Jury demand, in writing, an over charged driving while suspended and let them fix it downtown in the Circuit Court.  They can dismiss and recharge or file the correct charge.  Get the case into a courtroom where you have a judge that you feel will treat your client the fairest.  You do not represent the judge, and you try to please them, but you have to do your constitutional duty for your client.  The police have to learn to do it correctly. When they do, you may be stuck, but until then, don't roll over.  

Baltimore County Not Guilty

I had a no breath test case today where the State offered the driving while impaired and would defer on sentencing.  My client had finished treatment months ago and had no record, so I told the prosecutor I am playing with house money and we would try the case.  The trooper remembered only what he wrote down.  He remembered nothing else.  He claimed to be NHTSA Certified, but then admitted he took a NHTSA course at the State Police Academy, and therefore passed the State Police test.  NHTSA does not certify anyone, including me, as I passed the same course.

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Baltimore County Not Guilty

This is a two part comment.  One on the case and one about the judge.  Yesterday I had a DUI with an issue about the arrest.  The video showed my client was not impaired, and the only reason for the stop was excessive speed.  Because of the judge's reputation for harsh sentences, I explained to my client that if we lost she would not accept a PBJ because of the probation conditions I expected would be imposed.  The judge is great on legal issues, but if you lose, I believe some of the "usual" probation conditions are unwarranted. I sat through the docket waiting for my trial and saw that the judge's probation conditions were completely in-line with everyone else. The "unusual" conditions were not imposed, even where I expected they would.  I told my client, there would be no appeal as no one would be fairer on the law, and that if we lost the sentence would be appropriate.

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Contact Information

  • Gary S. Bernstein, P.A.
  • 29 W. Susquehanna Avenue, Suite 700
  • Towson, Maryland 21204
  • Toll Free: 866-435-2795
  • Locally: 410-415-9219
  • Fax: 410-823-0610

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