Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Dismissal Before Trial on Shooting Case

by Gig Wyatt
Attorney at Law
Harris, Wyatt, and Amala

                The client was charged with Attempted Assault I with a Deadly Weapon, Unlawful Use of a Firearm, and Theft I arising out of a shooting in East Marion Co earlier this year.  The prosecutor wanted 5 years prison and threatened to charge the client with Attempted Murder if he did not accept a plea.

 The prosecution finally had enough and dismissed all charges prior to trial. The purported victim, an off-duty out-of-state police officer, called 911 to report that the defendant had punched him in the face, stole his duty weapon, shot at him, and fled the scene. His information, however, was soon learned to be largely fabricated.

Gig Wyatt discussed the strategy of when to divulge certain facts to the prosecution.  “Our investigation revealed several key witnesses that were overlooked by the police investigation. My private investigator interviewed witnesses that clearly impeached the off-duty officer. His credibility, or lack thereof, was essential.   Once we disclosed our information  to the prosecutor, they dismissed all charges.”  Shoddy investigation by the police is a prime target for criminal defense.
                Gig Wyatt practices criminal defense in Marion County and travels throughout the state. He has 28 years of experience and is a member of Oregon Criminal Defense Lawyers Association and National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.


from the web site www.SalemOregonCriminalDefense.com :

Your Rights are Important - An arrest is a seizure under both the United States Constitution, and the Oregon Constitution, and an officer must have probable cause that you have committed a crime.  The legal concept of probable cause has both a subjective and an objective component. An officer must subjectively believe that you have committed a crime, and his belief must be objectively reasonable under the circumstances.
 

NOTICE: The purpose of this website is to provide basic and general information about Criminal Defense laws in Oregon. This publication should not be interpreted as legal advice, nor substituted for the specific legal advice of an experienced attorney.


Combined Alcohol and Controlled Substance DUII Dismissed


                The client was seen by the police sleeping in her vehicle in a parking lot with an open container in the center console.  After knocking on the window, the client woke up and began a conversation with the officer.  During the conversation, the client admitted drinking and that she took various prescription medications.  Field sobriety tests were recorded, and the officer reported that the client “failed” all the tests.  After arrest, the investigating officers joked together asking “what do you think she’ll blow?”  Laughing his response, one of the officers said “at least a .13%.”  The client took the breath test which was a .05%.  Despite the low breath test, the state continued to prosecute and theorized that the prescription medications combined with the alcohol to cause the client to be under the influence. 

                The client was eligible for the diversion program, but decided to accept the significant risk and proceed to trial.  Prior to trial, Mr. Snow repeatedly told the prosecutor how weak the state’s case was.  “When a combined theory of controlled substance and alcohol is alleged, the state needs to prove that the Defendant was, in fact, under the influence of controlled substances at the time of driving,” said Snow.  “Without a Drug Recognition exam, or a urinalysis test, the state would be asking the jury to speculate that controlled substances were affecting my client at the time of driving.”  One week before trial, the prosecutor elected to dismiss the case.  The prosecutor told the judge, “Your Honor, I think Mr. Snow would just have too much fun my officer’s investigation.” 

submitted by DUI attorney Randy Snow
Harris, Wyatt and Amala
Salem, OR