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Help - I have questions about a suspected DUI incident.

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Bunny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 08:14 AM
Original message
Help - I have questions about a suspected DUI incident.
A relative of mine wrecked his truck over the weekend. Apparently, there were empty beer cans in the truck. He was not injured, but was quite agitated at the scene. He was taken to the hospital by police cruiser for a DUI blood test. He was released about two hours later and went home with his girlfriend. We have no idea if he is considered to be a drunk driver or not. How long would it take to get the blood results back? If it takes a week to get the blood results, can he be arrested for DUI at that time? Would he have been released so soon after the accident, if there was a chance he could still be drunk? We are confused, and will probably not get the truth from him. Is anyone familiar with the laws in this area?
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Robb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 08:17 AM
Response to Original message
1. It's possible he was arrested and made bail already
In most areas the police will tell you what happened if you call and ask. Two hours is pretty quick, but it's possible he's got charges pending. I don't believe blood tests take very long at all. :shrug:
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mtowngman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 08:36 AM
Response to Original message
2. if the blood test was ordered stat
it could be resulted in a couple of hours. not familiar with the law, but I work in a hospital lab and alcohol(ethanol) is not a test that usually needs to be sent out to a third party or reference lab.
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Bunny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 08:43 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. Thanks, that's helpful.
We were wondering if the test could have come back negative and that's why he was released so soon after the incident. We were thinking that they wouldn't have released him if there was still a chance he could be legally drunk - wouldn't the cops have some type of liability if he were still drunk, got into another car, drove away and hurt someone? I thought they usually arrested you and kept you in the drunk tank for awhile so you could sober up.
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HarukaTheTrophyWife Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 08:48 AM
Response to Reply #3
4. In NJ, they will release you to friend/family member if you're still drunk
however, they must drive you home and they must sign a statement agreeing that they will not allow you to ingest any drugs/alcohol and that you won't operate any motor vehicles for 12 hours. If they allow you to do those things and you're busted again, then they're also held liable.
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Bunny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 08:52 AM
Response to Reply #4
6. Ahh, I did not know that.
I wonder if the law is the same in PA.
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mtowngman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 08:52 AM
Response to Reply #3
5. I was in court one night for something else
and in one of the cases ahead of mine the defendant tried to tell the judge something about being let go the first time he'd gotten stopped drunk driving this particular night. I can't remember the details of the guy's story,but I do remember the judge telling the guy that he didn't believe any cop would do that because if the cop let the drunk driver go, and the drunk driver ended up hurting or killing someone the cop would be as responsible as the driver.However, I know from my own experience that drunk drivers are released from custody as long as a legal, sober driver is taking them home.
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Bunny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 08:53 AM
Response to Reply #5
7. Well, his girlfriend was presumably sober when she picked him
up at the hospital, so maybe that's what happened.
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rug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 09:06 AM
Response to Original message
8. In Pennsylvania he can be arrested by mail.
The DA can subpoena his blood records and send him a summons if they have enough evidence.

He should contact a lawyer.

CHAPTER 38
DRIVING AFTER IMBIBING ALCOHOL OR UTILIZING DRUGS

Section 3801. Definitions.

The following words and phrases when used in this chapter shall have the meanings
given to them in this section unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Adult." An individual who is at least 21 years of age.
"Ignition interlock system." A system approved by the
department which prevents a vehicle from being started or
operated unless the operator first provides a breath sample
indicating that the operator has an alcohol level less than
.025%.
"Minor." An individual who is under 21 years of age.


Section 3802. Driving under influence of alcohol or controlled substance.

(a) General impairment.

(1) An individual may not drive, operate or be in actual physical control of
the movement of a vehicle after imbibing a sufficient amount of alcohol such
that the individual is rendered incapable of safely driving, operating or being in
actual physical control of the movement of the vehicle.

(2) An individual may not drive, operate or be in actual physical control of
the movement of a vehicle after imbibing a sufficient amount of alcohol such
that the alcohol concentration in the individual's blood or breath is at least .08%
but less than .10% within two hours after the individual has driven, operated or
been in actual physical control of the movement of the vehicle.

(b) High rate of alcohol.--An individual may not drive, operate or be in actual
physical control of the movement of a vehicle after imbibing a sufficient amount of alcohol
such that the alcohol concentration in the individual's blood or breath is at least .10% but less
than .16% within two hours after the individual has driven, operated or been in actual
physical control of the movement of the vehicle.

(c) Highest rate of alcohol.--An individual may not drive, operate or be in
actual physical control of the movement of a vehicle after imbibing a sufficient amount of
alcohol such that the alcohol concentration in the individual's blood or breath is.16% or
higher within two hours after the individual has driven, operated or been in actual
physical control of the movement of the vehicle.

(d) Controlled substances.--An individual may not drive, operate or be in actual
physical control of the movement of a vehicle under any of the following circumstances:

(1) There is in the individual's blood any amount of a:

(i) Schedule I controlled substance, as defined in the act of April 14,
1972 (P.L.233, No.64), known as The Controlled Substance, Drug,
Device and Cosmetic Act;

(ii) Schedule II or Schedule III controlled substance, as defined in
The Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act, which has
not been medically prescribed for the individual; or

(iii) metabolite of a substance under subparagraph (i) or (ii).

(2) The individual is under the influence of a drug or combination of drugs to
a degree which impairs the individual's ability to safely drive, operate or be in
actual physical control of the movement of the vehicle.

(3) The individual is under the combined influence of alcohol and a drug or
combination of drugs to a degree which impairs the individual's ability to safely
drive, operate or be in actual physical control of the movement of the vehicle.

(4) The individual is under the influence of a solvent or noxious substance in
violation of 18 Pa.C.S. 7303(relating to sale or illegal use of certain solvents
and noxious substances).

(e) Minors.--A minor may not drive, operate or be in actual physical control of the
movement of a vehicle after imbibing a sufficient amount of alcohol such that the alcohol
concentration in the minor's blood or breath is .02% or higher within two hours after the
minor has driven, operated or been in actual physical control of the movement of the vehicle.

(f) Commercial or school vehicles.--An individual may not drive, operate or be in
actual physical control of the movement of a commercial vehicle, school bus or school vehicle in
any of the following circumstances:

(1) After the individual has imbibed a sufficient amount of alcohol such that the
alcohol concentration in the individual's blood or breath is:

(i) .04% or greater within two hours after the individual has driven,
operated or been in actual physical control of the movement of a
commercial vehicle other than a school bus or a school vehicle.

(ii) .02% or greater within two hours after the individual has driven,
operated or been in actual physical control of the movement of a
school bus or a school vehicle.

(2) After the individual has imbibed a sufficient amount of alcohol such that the
individual is rendered incapable of safely driving, operating or being in actual
physical control of the movement of the vehicle.

(3) While the individual is under the influence of a controlled substance or
combination of controlled substances, as defined in section 1603 (relating to
definitions).

(4) While the individual is under the combined influence of alcohol and a
controlled substance or combination of controlled substances, as defined in
section 1603.

(g) Exception to two-hour rule.--Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (a),
(b), (c), (e) or (f), where alcohol or controlled substance concentration in an individual's blood
or breath is an element of the offense, evidence of such alcohol or controlled substance
concentration more than two hours after the individual has driven, operated or been in actual
physical control of the movement of the vehicle is sufficient to establish that element of the offense
under the following circumstances:

(1) where the Commonwealth shows good cause explaining why the
chemical test could not be performed within two hours; and

(2) where the Commonwealth establishes that the individual did not imbibe any
alcohol or utilize a controlled substance between the time the individual was
arrested and the time the sample was obtained.


Section 3803. Grading.

(a) Basic offenses.--

(1) An individual who violates section 3802(a) (relating to driving under
influence of alcohol or controlled substance) and has no more than one prior
offense commits a misdemeanor for which the individual may be sentenced to a
term of imprisonment of not more than six months and to pay a fine under
section 3804 (relating to penalties).

(2) An individual who violates section 3802(a) and has more than one prior
offense commits a misdemeanor of the second degree.

(b) Other offenses.--

(1) An individual who violates section 3802(b), (e) or (f) and who has no more
than one prior offense commits a misdemeanor for which the individual may be
sentenced to a term of imprisonment of not more than six months and to pay a
fine under section 3804.

(2) An individual who violates section 3802(c) or (d) and who has no prior
offenses commits a misdemeanor for which the individual may be sentenced to
a term of imprisonment of not more than six months and to pay a fine under
section 3804.

(3) An individual who violates section 3802(b), (e) or (f) and who has more
than one prior offense commits a misdemeanor of the first degree.

(4) An individual who violates section 3802(c) or (d) and who has one or
more prior offenses commits a misdemeanor of the first degree.


Section 3804. Penalties.

(a) General impairment.--An individual who violates section 3802(a) (relating
to driving under influence of alcohol or controlled substance) shall be sentenced as follows:

(1) For a first offense, to:
(i) undergo a period of probation not to exceed six months;
(ii) pay a fine of $300;
(iii) attend an alcohol highway safety school approved by the
department; and
(iv) comply with all drug and alcohol treatment requirements
imposed under section 3814 (relating to drug and alcohol assessments)
and section 3815 (relating to mandatory sentencing).

(2) For a second offense, to:
(i) undergo imprisonment for not less than five days nor more than six
months;
(ii) pay a fine of not less than $300 nor more than $2,500;
(iii) attend an alcohol highway safety school approved by the
department; and
(iv) comply with all drug and alcohol treatment requirements imposed
under sections 3814 and 3815.

(3) For a third or subsequent offense, to:
(i) undergo imprisonment of not less than ten days nor more than two
years;
(ii) pay a fine of not less than $500 nor more than $5,000; and
(iii) comply with all drug and alcohol treatment requirements imposed
under sections 3814 and 3815.

(b) High rate of blood alcohol; minors; commercial vehicles and school buses
and school vehicles; accidents.--Except as set forth in subsection (c), an individual who
violates section 3802(a)(1) where there was an accident resulting in bodily injury, serious
bodily injury or death of any person or in damage to a vehicle or other property or who
violates section 3802(b), (e) or (f) shall be sentenced as follows:

(1) For a first offense, to:
(i) undergo imprisonment of not less than 48 consecutive hours nor
more than six months;
(ii) pay a fine of not less than $500 nor more than $5,000;
(iii) attend an alcohol highway safety school approved by
the department; and
(iv) comply with all drug and alcohol treatment requirements
imposed under sections 3814 and 3815.

(2) For a second offense, to:
(i) undergo imprisonment of not less than 30 days nor more than six
months;
(ii) pay a fine of not less than $750 nor more than $5,000;
(iii) attend an alcohol highway safety school approved by the
department; and
(iv) comply with all drug and alcohol treatment requirements imposed
under sections 3814 and 3815.

(3) For a third offense, to:
(i) undergo imprisonment of not less than 90 days nor more than five
years;
(ii) pay a fine of not less than $1,500 nor more than $10,000; and
(iii) comply with all drug and alcohol treatment requirements imposed
under sections 3814 and 3815.

(4) For a fourth or subsequent offense, to:
(i) undergo imprisonment of not less than one year nor more than five
years;
(ii) pay a fine of not less than $1,500 nor more than $10,000; and
(iii) comply with all drug and alcohol treatment requirements
imposed under sections 3814 and 3815.

(c) Incapacity; highest blood alcohol; controlled substances.--An individual
who violates section 3802(a)(1) and refused testing of blood or breath or an individual
who violates section 3802(c) or (d) shall be sentenced as follows:

(1) For a first offense, to:
(i) undergo imprisonment of not less than 72 consecutive hours nor
more than six months;
(ii) pay a fine of not less than $1,000 nor more than $5,000;
(iii) attend an alcohol highway safety school approved by the
department; and
(iv) comply with all drug and alcohol treatment requirements imposed
under sections 3814 and 3815.

(2) For a second offense, to:
(i) undergo imprisonment of not less than 90 days nor more than five
years;
(ii) pay a fine of not less than $1,500;
(iii) attend an alcohol highway safety school approved by the
department; and
(iv) comply with all drug and alcohol treatment requirements imposed
under sections 3814 and 3815.

(3) For a third or subsequent offense, to:
(i) undergo imprisonment of not less than one year nor more than five
years;
(ii) pay a fine of not less than $2,500; and
(iii) comply with all drug and alcohol treatment requirements
imposed under sections 3814 and 3815.

(d) Extended supervision of court.--If a person is sentenced pursuant to this
chapter and, after the initial assessment required by section 3814(1), the person is
determined to be in need of additional treatment pursuant to section 3814(2), the judge
shall impose a minimum sentence as provided by law and a maximum sentence equal to
the statutorily available maximum. A sentence to the statutorily available maximum
imposed pursuant to this subsection may, in the discretion of the sentencing
court, be ordered to be served in a county prison, notwithstanding the provisions of
42 Pa.C.S. 9762 (relating to sentencing proceeding and place of confinement).

(e) Suspension of operating privileges upon conviction.

(1) The department shall suspend the operating privilege of an individual
under paragraph (2) upon receiving a certified record of the individual's
conviction of or an adjudication of delinquency for:
(i) an offense under section 3802; or
(ii) an offense which is substantially similar to an offense enumerated
in section 3802 reported to the department under Article III of the
compact in section 1581 (relating to Driver's License Compact).

(2) Suspension under paragraph (1) shall be in accordance with the following:
(i) Except as provided for in subparagraph (iii), 12 months for an
ungraded misdemeanor or misdemeanor of the second degree under
this chapter.
(ii) 18 months for a misdemeanor of the first degree under this
chapter.
(iii) There shall be no suspension for an ungraded misdemeanor under
section 3802(a) where the person is subject to the penalties provided
in subsection (a) and the person has no prior offense.
(iv) For suspensions imposed under paragraph (1)(ii), notwithstanding
any provision of law or enforcement agreement to the contrary, all of
the following apply:
(A) Suspensions shall be in accordance with Chapter 15,
Subchapter D (relating to the Driver's License Compact).
(B) In calculating the term of a suspension for an offense
that is substantially similar to an offense enumerated in
section 3802, the department shall presume that if the
conduct reported had occurred in this Commonwealth then
the person would have been convicted under section 3802(a)(2).
(v) Notwithstanding any other provision of law or enforcement
agreement to the contrary, the department shall suspend the
operating privilege of a driver for six months upon receiving a
certified record of a consent decree granted under 42 Pa.C.S.
Ch. 63 (relating to juvenile matters) based on section 3802.

(f) Community service assignments.--In addition to the penalties set forth in this
section, the sentencing judge may impose up to 150 hours of community service. Where
the individual has been ordered to drug and alcohol treatment pursuant to sections 3814
and 3815, the community service shall be certified by the drug and alcohol treatment
program a consistent with any drug and alcohol treatment requirements imposed under
sections 3814 and 3815.

(g) Sentencing guidelines.--The sentencing guidelines promulgated by the
Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing shall not supersede the mandatory penalties
of this section.

(h) Appeal.--The Commonwealth has the right to appeal directly to the Superior
Court any order of court which imposes a sentence for violation of this section which
does not meet the requirements of this section. The Superior Court shall remand the case
to the sentencing court for imposition of a sentence in accordance with the provisions of
this section.

There's a lot more. Good luck.

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Bunny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 11:52 AM
Response to Reply #8
20. Thanks, that was pretty informative.
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pitohui Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 11:20 AM
Response to Original message
9. if your relative wants you to butt out
Edited on Mon Oct-30-06 11:21 AM by pitohui
then you should butt out

i wouldn't tell you anything either about my private life if i thought you were going to post all over the fabulous internets that i'd been arrested for drunk driving

let your relative work thru his issues on his own until such time as he requests your advice
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Bunny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 11:23 AM
Response to Reply #9
10. You don't need to concern yourself with me asking about your
private life. No worries there. But thanks for chiming in with your opinion - it's been real helpful. :eyes:
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 11:32 AM
Response to Reply #10
12. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
HarukaTheTrophyWife Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 11:48 AM
Response to Reply #12
17. You miss out on so much that way.
She knows everything about everything and she spreads her knowledge with such love and warmth.
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ScreamingMeemie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 11:51 AM
Response to Reply #17
19. I got my fill of that warmth a few months ago.
Longest lasting resident on an ignore list of one. Of course, this will be removed. :hi:
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pitohui Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 11:33 AM
Response to Reply #10
13. thanks i try you can thank me later
if i were your relative and i knew you were doing this, you would no longer be a part of my life

bottom line

your violation of his privacy w.out his knowledge or permission is wrong, unethical, and a passive-aggressive way of piling on when he's already in trouble

do unto others as you would have them do unto you, isn't just a cool phrase from confucious, sometimes it's actually a good idea
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Bunny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 11:45 AM
Response to Reply #13
15. Uh, yeah. Since I posted his full name, address, birthdate, and
Social Security number, I can sure see how you came to your opinion. :eyes:
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tigereye Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 05:06 PM
Response to Reply #13
22. since she's just asking for info about someone she cares for
I really don't think it's an issue. Lots of folks here ask these kinds of questions all the time. Actually, you are the one who should butt out.
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Bunny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 05:15 PM
Response to Reply #22
24. Thanks tigereye.
Some people, huh? :eyes:
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trof Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 11:31 AM
Response to Original message
11. Did they give him a field sobriety test?
That's what they usually do first if they suspect you've been drinking.
Walk a straight line, heel-to-toe; close eyes, put head back, arms outstretched, touch tip of nose repeatedly with each hand.
If you don't pass, then have you blow or give you blood test.

Were the beer cans in the cab or the bed?
A lot of my Texas in-laws throw the empties in the back where they may stay for weeks.
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Bunny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 11:48 AM
Response to Reply #11
16. I've found out more information since I first posted this.
Apparently, he was administered a breathalyzer, and the results of that seemed to warrant that they go to the hospital and do a blood test. I don't know what that means, exactly.

The beer cans were in the cab, not the bed. It doesn't look good, does it?
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trof Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 04:45 PM
Response to Reply #16
21. 'Fraid not, Buns.
But, IIRC the blood test is more accurate than the breathalizer.
Now THAT goes either way.
Either the breath test was marginal, so they wanted the blood test to seal the deal (charge of DUI), or
he failed it and they wanted a more accurate reading to possibly up the ante (Aggravated DUI?).
In other words, the blood test may show a higher concentration than the breath test.
Hope it's his first offense, if in fact he was "impaired".

I think in your OP you said he was "agitated" at the scene?
Did he give the cops a hard time?
If so, that's not good at all.
Best of luck.
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Bunny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 05:14 PM
Response to Reply #21
23. I don't think he gave the cop a hard time, I think it was more a case
of being really shook up. He has panic attacks along with his alcohol abuse, and crashing the truck probably trigged the anxiety attack. This is his first DUI, if he was indeed DUI.
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trof Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 05:17 PM
Response to Reply #23
25. He'll probably have to go to driving school.
To get his license back.
Could be worse.
Sorry, Buns.
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Bunny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 05:19 PM
Response to Reply #25
26. Thanks trof.
:hug:
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ScreamingMeemie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 11:34 AM
Response to Original message
14. It would be within that time frame. They usually bump those on
arrangement with the hospital. He was either 1. below the limit 2. able to post bail. In either case, I'm glad he is okay.
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Bunny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 11:50 AM
Response to Reply #14
18. I'm glad he's okay too, and more importantly no one else was hurt.
We've seen this coming for a long time, but you just can't get through to people when they're addicted. Maybe this will be the wake up call he needs.
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