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Attorney Fred Slone

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Case Results

Police Lie: Driver Not Impaired

not impaired! not guilty

Summary:  L. H. was driving from Anchorage to Palmer on the Glenn Highway. She had picked   up a hitchhiker in Anchorage, and was giving him a ride to Palmer. L. H. was   stopped on the Glenn Highway, south of Palmer for speeding 73 in a 55 mph zone.   The trooper noted signs of intoxication and administered field "sobriety" tests.   In the trooper's opinion, L. H. did quite poorly on the field sobriety tests. A   preliminary breath test was administered with a result of .145. L. h. was   arrested and taken to a trooper station where an Intoximeter 3000 breath test   was administered with a .138 result.

state of alaska vs. L. h., district court palmer, Alaska

hiring a very experienced dui defense attorneys pays off

In preparing the case for trial, Attorney Fred Slone discovered that the breath test machine had been altered by the troopers turning   down the circuitry that was designed to detect interfering substances on the   breath which might be read as alcohol. Their explanation was that circuitry was   not working properly, and their modification did nothing to affect the accuracy   and reliability of the machine.

state police trooper testify suspect intoxicated

A pretrial motion was filed to suppress the   results of the breath test. The trial court ultimately denied this motion,   setting the case on for trial.

At trial, two troopers who were at the scene testified that L. h. was clearly intoxicated, and the breath test result was admitted into evidence.

defense calls hitchhiker passenger to testify

Attorney Fred Slone was able to locate the passenger who was with L. h. at the time she   was stopped. L. h. had not seen this man since her arrest. The passenger was   called by the defense to testify at trial. He testified that he was picked up by   L. h. while hitchhiking just outside of Anchorage. Although L. h. was only   traveling as far as Fort Richardson, she agreed to give him a ride all the way   to Palmer. In stark contrast to the officers' testimony, this witness testified   that L. h. did not smell strongly of alcohol, did not have slurred speech, and   appeared perfectly normal. Although he had been riding with her for   approximately 30 miles, the witness testified that he saw nothing unusual about   her driving, and noted no signs of intoxication.

police video tape impeaches police witness

Additionally, a video   tape of L. h. at the trooper station was played for the jury. In contrast to the   arresting officers' testimony, the video tape did not indicate that L. h. was   clearly intoxicated, and the field "sobriety" tests that were performed on the   video tape at the station were done quite well.

jury returns not guilty verdict

Despite the .138 breath   test result, and the troopers' testimony that L. h. was intoxicated, the jury   found L. H. "NOT GUILTY" of drunk driving, and L. h. was completely exonerated.

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