Because of the blinding influence of alcohol, drunk drivers attempting to elude the police often think they’re police-evading tactics are more clever than they actually are.
Common tactics include driving too slow or too fast, masking swerving by simply swerving really slow, or blaming red eyes and slow reflexes on a lack of sleep, or prescription pills.
The most infamous DUI offenders, though, are the people who cause car accidents, and then flee the scene out of fear of being caught driving under the influence of alcohol.
A man in Louisville recently learned just how difficult escaping the scene of a DUI accident can be.
According to WDRB News, which is based in Louisville, Kentucky, 37-year-old Jesse Gaines was arrested last week after police tracked his car by following the path of leaky fluids from Gaines’ wounded vehicle.
Before his arrest, Gaines had allegedly been involved in a three-car accident in downtown Louisville. The police report from the accident indicates that Gaines swerved into oncoming traffic and struck two cars before speeding back into the road and then striking a pole.
After the accident, Gaines fled the scene, which led to phone calls to Louisville about a drunk driver on the loose.
Officers did not have a hard time locating Gaines, as they simply followed the path of a leaking fluid that had started dripping from Gaines’ car at the scene of the accident.
When Gaines was finally arrested by the police, he admitted that he had just left a strip club where he had consumed two “large liquor drinks.”
The police report also claims that Gaines smelled of alcohol, had red eyes, and was unable to stand without falling down. When the police administered a breathalyzer test, Gaines blew a remarkable .26, which is far above the legal limit of .08.
After his less-than-sterling performance on the blood alcohol test, Gaines was promptly arrested and charged with operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol.
To add insult to injury, Gaines was also charged with a failure to maintain insurance. This, of course, will be disappointing news to the other drivers whose cars were struck by Gaines during his ill-fated drive.
While Gaines faces a world of legal trouble, it’s worth noting that DUI arrests can be serious crimes even in the absence of an actual accident.
A DUI arrest often leads to jail time, a suspended license, and hefty fines. Because of the potentially severe impact of DUI charges, many people who are arrested seek legal information from a local DUI lawyer.
Courts take DUI arrests very seriously, but with the proper legal information, people who are arrested are able to deal with the charges with minimal damages to their finances and their reputation.
In a sign that gossip magazines’ obsession with celebrity drunk driving arrests may have gone too far, Radar Online recently reported on a celebrity DUI that occurred more than half a decade ago.
Ryan Gosling, the unwitting victim of a media with a long memory, managed to keep a 2005 DUI arrest out of the public eye until last week.
According to Radar Online, the popular star of films such as “The Notebook” and “Lars and the Real Girl” was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol way back in March of 2005.
Sources indicate that he was arrested by California Highway Patrol officers from the force’s central Los Angeles location.
Fortunately for Gosling, he and his DUI lawyer were able to lower his punishment. While Gosling was initially charged with a DUI, and his breathalyzer test allegedly revealed a blood alcohol level well above the legal limit of .08, both these charges were eventually dropped.
Instead, Gosling pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor charge of “exhibiting speed.” According to sources, he was sentenced to two years of probation and had to pay roughly $800 in fines.
Cases like these, in which a celebrity escapes a DUI arrest with relatively minor charges, sometimes raises the public’s ire. If a celebrity is perceived to escape the consequences of his actions, people may view the end result as unjust.
However, while celebrities often see DUI charges dropped or reduced, average Joes are often just as capable of fighting their drunk driving arrests.
There are hundreds of things that can go wrong during a DUI arrest. If the police make a procedural error, or a mistake in judgment, the DUI charge may not hold as much weight in court.
In addition, courts often treat first-time offenders with more leniency than they handle people who have habitually violated the law.
Of course, even if the charges are reduced, most people do not face the challenge of having news of their arrest appear in a grocery store checkout line six years after the event occurred.
While DUI convictions are technically part of the public record, they do not have to end careers or lead to financial disaster.
By taking aggressive steps immediately after a DUI arrest, many people have a better chance of defending their legal rights in court.
For what it’s worth, Ryan Gosling’s career certainly seems to have survived his brush with the law in 2005.
The Canadian actor is currently starring as a stunt driver in the film “Drive,” which may have prompted the excursion through his driving record, and has had a leading role in at least half a dozen major movies in the last few years.
So, whether you are a big-time actor or just a regular non-famous civilian, remember that a DUI arrest is not always the end of the world. As Gosling can attest, regaining the freedom to drive again may be quite simple.
In Utah, a highway patrol officer arrested a man with epilepsy and cerebral palsy for DUI, after pulling him over as he rode a motorized bicycle, according to an article in CBS News.
Mike Tilt’s disabilities would make it difficult for him to complete a field sobriety test under any circumstances, and he warned the officer who stopped him of that fact.
Nevertheless, he was asked to take the field sobriety test, including walking with one foot in front of the other. As he had predicted, he failed the test.
And when Tilt told the trooper, Utah Highway Patrol Trooper Lisa Steed, that he takes medication for his ailments, he was arrested for DUI.
The Utah Highway Patrol later called CBS News to say that the arrest of Tilt for DUI was not consistent with the goals of patrol and their DUI prevention efforts, and Tilt was not charged with DUI.
The trooper who made the stop, however, has faced increased scrutiny from the media. According to those investigations, Steed has been chastised in court over several DUI cases. A judge in one case scolded her for ignoring standard Utah Highway Patrol procedures, and he called her actions “especially troubling,” and another judge said that she “lacks credibility,” according to KUTV.
Examples of her disregarding Utah Highway Patrol procedure includes cases in which Steed has conducted field sobriety tests out of view of the cameras installed on patrol cars. This was not the case in Tilt’s arrest, however.
According to a DUI defense attorney who has defended clients whom Steed has pulled over in the past, Steed is a goal-oriented trooper who wants to pull over as many people as possible to make DUI arrests.
Many came to Steed’s support, as well, including the Utah Highway Patrol, which clarified that many people are guilty of DUI when driving with prescription medication in their systems, and that Steed has a long record of success in making DUI stops and arrests.
Steed was also Trooper of the Year in 2007. She has made around 800 DUI arrests in the last eight years.
The Utah Highway Patrol is currently inquiring into Steed’s actions, though they stand behind her arrest record.