Pilot Not Guilty Saves Pilot's License
pilot issued dui - slone proves not guilty!
Summary: An airline pilot was issued a citation for drunk driving; sobriety test results included a .133 breath test and .132 blood test. After three years of diligent defense work, Attorney Fred Slone obtained an acquittal for his client.
This case was fought for over three years, finally resulting in a "NOT GUILTY" verdict at trial more than three years after the arrest. Before trial, the case was extensively litigated by Attorney Fred Slone in Anchorage District Court, The Alaska Court Of Appeals, The Alaska Supreme Court, and Federal District Court for the District of Alaska.
state of alaska vs. k. h., district court anchorage
hiring a dui attorney quickly preserved critical evidence
Attorney Slone was retained by K. H., an airline pilot, the day after his arrest. A video tape was made the day following K. h.'s arrest of the section of the highway that he was driving just prior to his arrest. This video turned out to be very helpful, since the officer testified that he stopped K. H. For speeding, breaking erratically, and crossing the lane markings on the highway. The video, made the evening after the arrest, showed that the lane markings were hardly visible, and that there was an unusual merge pattern at the area where K. h. was supposedly breaking erratically.
state of alaska warrant seizes blood test samples
After the stop, field tests were administered to K. h. and allegedly failed. K. h. was brought to a police station where a breath test was administered with a .133 result. K. h. was asked if he wanted an independent blood test after the breath test was administered. He indicated that he would and blood was drawn at a hospital. The State obtained a search warrant and seized one of the 2 samples of the blood that was drawn at the hospital. The State then had the blood analyzed at the State Crime Lab with a result of .132.
evidence suppressed on attorney slone's motion
Attorney Fred Slone filed numerous pretrial motions to exclude the breath test evidence, the blood test evidence, and to dismiss the case. The trial court granted K. h.'s motion to suppress the blood test evidence, based on Attorney. Slone's argument that the officer deceived K. h. by leading him to believe that if he had his blood drawn at the hospital, the police would not seek to obtain the results.
attorney slone gets case dismissed due to double jeopardy
The trial court also granted Attorney Slone's motion to dismiss the case on double jeopardy grounds, since K. h.'s license was revoked by the DMV prior to trial.
state of alaska appeals attorney slone's win
After the case was dismissed the State appealed the dismissal order to the Court Of Appeals, along with several other consolidated cases. The Court Of Appeals reversed the Trial Court's decision and reinstated the prosecution, holding that there was no double jeopardy violation.
dui case goes to trial
Attorney Fred Slone subsequently filed a Petition For Hearing in the Alaska Supreme Court and a Petition For Writ Of Habeas Corpus in the Federal District Court for the District Of Alaska in Anchorage. After several months, that Petitions were ultimately denied. The case finally came to trial more than three years after the arrest.
testimony denies intoxication
Two other pilots who were with K. h. at the time of his stop testified at trial that they were with K. h. for several hours and that they did not see anything that led them to believe that K. h. was intoxicated. They were drinking some beer, watching a basketball game, and talking "shop". They saw nothing unsafe in K. h.'s driving, and noted that his speedometer was not working at the time. Additionally, Attorney Slone called an alcohol expert witness from a leading university in the Pacific Northwest.
jury returns not guilty verdict
After four days of trial, the jury returned a verdict of "NOT GUILTY". Particularly helpful in the presentation of the K. h.'s case was prior testimony by the troopers at pretrial hearings, which was used to impeach their inconsistent testimony at trial. Also important was the testimony of the defense witnesses, including the alcohol expert who testified about several factors that can affect the accuracy of the breath test.
professional career saved
The acquittal of K. h. in this DWI case was particularly important to him in his professional endeavor as an airline pilot.