Tough Times Call For Tough Representation

Photo of Gary S. Bernstein

Want to get drunk and sit in your car in your driveway with the engine on……

On Behalf of | Jun 23, 2011 | DUI |

…Be prepared to be asked to take a breath test.  Today the Court of Appeals eliminated the defense to the requirement for taking of a breath test, that you be found driving or in actual control of the vehicle on a highway or private property used by the public in general.  The exact language is :

“That provision does not limit the “implied consent” to taking a test to those occasions when the police officer stops a driver on a highway or private property used by the public. Rather, that provision merely declares that any person who avails himself or herself of the privilege to drive on Maryland’s public roads or publicly-used private property in general is deemed to have consented to take a test, if detained on suspicion of driving or attempting to drive while under the influence of alcohol, regardless of whether the stop was on a highway, private property used by the public, or purely private property. Because the actual location of the stop is immaterial under T.R. § 16-205.1, the MVA need not present evidence of the location, and the Administrative Law Judge need not make a finding of it before suspending a person’s driver’s license.”

The defense was nearly eliminated in the “Ambrose” case, where the court interpreted the term “private property used by the public in general.”  Today they said the language is not a limitation, but just descriptive of what a driving privilege means.  I won a lot of MVA Hearings based on my and the ALJ’s misinterpretation of this clause.  Not anymore.