helps people win back their lives
Careless Driving Plea Offer in Central Michigan Saves Service Member’s Career
Barone Defense Firm’s Senior Associate Attorney, Ryan Ramsayer just scored a major victory for his client in Central Michigan. The client was accused of Operating While Intoxicated with a .12 BAC, but ended with a plea to Careless Driving, a simple traffic ticket.
Originally, our client was stopped for running red light in the early morning hours. Even though the client believed no one was in the area, a police officer was hidden in an nearby parking lot and watching the intersection. After the stop, our client was respectful to the officer and actually performed well on parts of the Standardized Field Sobriety Testing. However, the client allegedly failed the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus Test and his PBT result was over the legal limit. After arrest, a pair of .12 results were obtained on a DataMaster DMT breath test machine (“DMT”) resulting in DUI charge.
This would have been an unfortunate situation for anyone. However, the client is a U.S. Service Member. As it happens, Attorney Ramsayer is also a combat veteran with the United States Marine Corps. Mr. Ramsayer’s personal experience in the Marines helped him understand the additional consequences that the Service Member would face if convicted. Specifically, it would have likely prevented the client’s promotion to the Officer Ranks. Moreover, a DUI conviction could have led to the client’s demotion, or worse, complete separation from the Service. With the client planning on a life-long career in Service, this would be a life-altering result.
To avoid these consequences for the client, attempts were made to convince the prosecutor that a conviction was not worth the damage to our client’s life and ability to remain in Service. While they appreciated the client’s sacrifice, the prosecutor remained unmoved. The offer remained a plea to a drunk driving, which would compromise the career for which our client has fought so hard to obtain. Fortunately, the Barone Defense Firm, in conjunction with the Michigan OWI Attorneys Association, had obtained valuable information regarding the Michigan State Police Breath Testing Program. Specifically, the program had led to multiple felony charges being filed from the Attorney General’s Office against those tasked with the maintenance and upkeep of the State’s DataMaster DMTs. With extensive behind-the-scenes information and exhausting FOIA Request documents, issues regarding the testing program became apparent. After extensive research into the DMT issues around the state and the evidence in this client’s case, we found that similar issues existed with the DMT that our client was tested on the night of his arrest.
After reviewing these issues, the client decided to press forward and reject the prosecutor’s offer. This led to a removal of any offer by the prosecution. The prosecutor dug in and decided to fight against the motion and attempt to defend the accuracy of the DMT. However, Mr. Ramsayer worked diligently to present a well-reasoned motion challenging the DMT, along with presenting the severe consequences in this matter to the client. This led to cooler heads prevailing. Instead of offering a simple reduction, the prosecution agreed to a dramatically significant reduction in the charge. Our client completely avoided any misdemeanor charge and, instead, pled responsible to two simple traffic tickets. There was no suspension, no restriction, no probation, no destruction of his career. Instead, our client gets a chance to continue serving this country with a lesson learned, while the Barone Defense Firm gets another win.