• Michigan Drunk Driving Charges: Did The Officer Go Too Far In Threatening You With A Court Ordered Test
  • April 23, 2012
  • Law Firm: The Nichols Law Firm PLLC - East Lansing Office
  • Some of the most powerful evidence in a drunk driving case can be a breath or blood result. “People arrested for drunk driving face the prospect of losing your license for 1 year and having 6 additional points assessed or agreeing to submit to a breath test,” says OWI attorney Mike Nichols of East Lansing. Nichols, a member of the American Academy of Forensic Science and a founder of the Michigan Association of OWI Attorneys, adds: “Many times juries give more weight to a breath test than it deserves. I’ve seen them convict when the breath test score was a .08 because the judge interfered with the ability of the accused to impeach the breath test device on its precision and accuracy.”

    Officers are required to read to arrested citizens the “implied consent rights” advising the person of his or her right to refuse a breath test under penalty of a license suspension and 6 points. Nichols says: “most importantly, the officer is required to tell you that your breath, blood or urine will not be taken without a court order but he may seek to obtain such an order.” Nichols is author of the Michigan drunk driving (OWI) Handbook for West Publishing. It is the book that lawyers must read for all things DUI in Michigan.

    Nichols, who focuses his practice on drunk and drugged driving, recently won a motion to exclude a .12 blood alcohol result because the officer coerced the consent from the accused citizen by telling her firmly: “I will get an order and still get my test ¿ and your license will be suspended for a year and 6 points will be assessed on your license.” The ruling was based on long-standing United States Supreme Court precedent and Michigan’s statute on implied consent. Nichols said “I cannot comment on evidence in a pending case, but the judge got the law right.”