I recently wrote an entry on this blog entitled, “Everyone Hates Lawyers…..’Till Their Kid Gets Caught.” Apparently some people continue to hate lawyers even after their kid gets caught AND they have hired one to represent that kid!
I was recently retained, by a father, for a college student who was charged with an OUI and had a breathalyzer reading above .08%. Of course, we are in an era where the breathalyzer’s reliability is being questioned by district attorneys themselves, and the reading was not that high, so I was confident about defending this case (I am confident about defending any OUI case).
I had not met the mom yet, but was able to do so at our pretrial conference, as she had joined my client and his dad on the trip from Boston. The subject of how to proceed with the case obviously came up along with the cost of my representation associated with the various options that I outlined. Essentially, the more work I do, the more I get paid. The issue of odds or likelihood of success of my suggested options was also broached. There is NO lawyer that can give you odds or likelihood of success on anything they intend to do.
I had suggested that we challenge the legality of the police stopping my client, with a motion to suppress evidence and schedule the case for trial immediately because the D.A.’s office is still figuring out the breathalyzer mess, and I would rather force them to decide how to use that machine as they are backed up against a trial, rather than just give them more time with no pressure.
Yes, this plan costs more money because of the work I would have to do, but the alternative would be for the kid to plead guilty to the OUI without any type of fight. “So we could spend all that money and after all that we could be right back to where we are right now? This is a clusterfu…..”, said mom. I finished the word for her. So, the decision to plead guilty to the OUI was about to be made. However, when I came back from giving them a moment to decide I was told that they wanted to take my advice and challenge things, at least for now.
We scheduled the case for motion to suppress and trial. I did the research and prepared the motion and got things ready for trial. Then I got a call from the D.A. They decided to dismiss the OUI.
NOW I can give odds…