Saturday, October 30, 2010

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

DRE Recognized as Expert Witness

In Sequatchie County Assistant District Attorney David Shinn succeeded in a jury trial in Circuit Court in qualifying Drug Recognition Expert Paul Howard as an expert witness. Once Deputy Howard testified about the results of the HGN and other testimony about drug impaired eye movements, the defendant changed his plea to guilty as charged.

Prescription drug DUI issue in the USA Today

The USA Today includes an article which focuses on a case from Florida. The problem of proving impairment, when the impairment comes from prescription drugs is the issue. Read about it at:

Sunday, October 17, 2010

In the news 2

The Tennessean ran a nice article today about drugged driving issues. I gave a hint as to where we are going in the next Legislative session in which the DA's Conference is going to push to end the privilege or refusal to test for multiple DUI offenders.
Read it at:

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

In the News

Nancy Ammons at WSMV tv has been running a series of stories about the ten year gap period in our DUI law. The first story Friday was about a vehicular homicide guy, who got out of prison after 13 years and was then a first offender. The second was about a DUI 10th offender, who was only a 2nd due to a 10 year gap in prior convictions. The third was an interview with me. Read about it at:

Monday, October 11, 2010

Ignition Interlock Providers

There are now 31 certified ignition interlock providers in Tennessee. To see a map of locations and for driving directions, go to:

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

World reknown burn specialist killed by impaired driver

In Dallas, Texas, Dr. Gary Pardue was riding his motorcycle at 7:30 a.m., wearing his helmet and protective gear. Dr. Pardue was a burn specialist at U.T. Southwestern. He was struck by a car driven by a 24 year old, who has been charged with intoxication manslaughter.
After the 9/11 attacks Dr. Pardue arranged a much needed delivery of skin replacement to New York City to treat those burned in the attack. In 1998 Dr. Pardue was recognized as Physician of the Year.
His journey ended abruptly, but his contributions to society will continue due to his great work with burn victims and as a leader and educator.

15 year sentence for Aggravated Vehicular Homicide

An Elizabethton man pled guilty and recieved a 15 year sentence, which is the minimum for aggravated vehicular homicide. James Allen Griffey had two prior DUI convictions.
In the case he weaved onto the right shoulder, overcorrected, crossed the centerline and slammed into a motorcycle driven by James Gano of Ohio.
Griffey had a .06 BAC and had four drugs in his system: diazepam, nordiazepam, meprobromate and carisoprodol.
Read the complete article in the Johnson City Press at:

Monday, October 4, 2010

Newsletter Available

The 32nd issue of the DUI NEWS is available on our website at:

It includes a discussion concerning the 1966 Schmerber desicion by The U.S.Supreme Court, which permitted mandatory blood draws in DUI cases; new case law, information about inhalant abuse and Court decisions including plea agreements in vehicular homicide and assault cases.

Hope it is helpful.

Friday, October 1, 2010

New DUI Decisions from the Court of Criminal Appeals

State v Berry

Berry passed a police cruiser going the opposite direction. When he did he ran off the roadway and hit the curb. The officer turned around, pulled him over and found an impaired driver. Berry went to trial and was convicted for his 3rd DUI. The Court gave him 200 days in the slammer to think it over.

State v Patterson

Patterson was driving so badly that a fireman pulled him over. The fireman flashed his lights and honked his horn until he stopped. The fireman, also an E.M.T., discovered Patterson had tipped back a few too many. When Patterson realized the fireman was not an officer, he peeled out and nearly hit him. When officers found him later Patterson locked himself in his car. He's locked in the jail now.