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Recently, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) renewed its push to lower the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit in drunk driving cases to .05. Currently, the legal limit is .08 in all fifty states, but many countries across the globe use .05. Critics believe the push to .05 is backed by ignition interlock industry, which…

In the United States, more than 2.2 million people are currently serving prison sentences. That is a staggering number of individuals who not only are unable to contribute to society, but for whom society must provide. It is widely accepted that some individuals deserve punishment and that others must be separated from the general population. But,…

Using a “canned” speech while reviewing a plea petition with a client who is not a U.S. citizen teeters on the brink of ineffective assistance of counsel. Recently, the Minnesota Court of Appeals determined a defendant received ineffective assistance of counsel when his lawyer advised him he would not be deported for pleading guilty to…

Harry: Lloyd, I can’t feel my fingers, they’re – they’re numb! Lloyd: Oh, well, here. Take this extra pair of gloves, my hands are starting to get a little sweaty. Harry: Extra gloves? You’ve had extra gloves this whole time? Lloyd: Uh, yeah, we’re in the Rockies! Harry: I’m gonna kill you![1] Did Harry actually…

Warrant Not Required to Analyze a Legally Obtained Blood Sample Yesterday, the Minnesota Court of Appeals drew a line in the sand for determining when law enforcement needs to obtain a warrant in impaired-driving investigations. In State v. Fawcett, the court held “if the state lawfully obtains a blood sample for the purpose of chemical…

Short answer, which will lead to a somewhat brief explanation: maybe. The current state of Minnesota’s DWI Refusal law certainly makes the title of this blog an interesting question. Refusing a blood or urine test is a great idea, if the Minnesota Supreme Court upholds Trahan and Thompson. Refusing a breath test may be an equally…

What happens to DWI cases in Minnesota while we await SCOTUS’s decision in Bernard?[1] Will judges be willing to stay all DWI cases until SCOTUS issues an opinion? Or, stay just DWI Refusal cases since that is what Bernard entails? Will judges force defense counsel to litigate the issue and force the losing party to…

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