If you don’t remember the game show, Name that Tune, you’re missing out on a great era of television history. You can still catch an occasional re-run on cable. But today’s topic doesn’t involve tunes. It involves questions. Today, I beat a case in one question. Trooper Rowe never even got a chance to answer it.
The hearing was at the Michigan Driver Assessment & Appeal Division before Hearing Officer Michael J. Modelski on an implied consent issue. Under Michigan’s implied consent statute, a motorist must submit to a chemical test after the driver is arrested for drunk driving. Implied-consent actions stem from an arrest for drunk driving or any other crime described in MCL 257.625c(1). Implied-consent hearings involve drivers who have allegedly refused to take the chemical test of a law enforcement officer’s choosing, without legal excuse. Prior to the request for the chemical test, the officer must establish reasonable grounds to believe that the driver committed a crime described in Section 625c(1) of the Michigan Vehicle Code, and that the officer arrested the driver for one of the appropriate violations, and advised the driver of the chemical test rights.
In today’s case, Trooper Rowe testified. It is the officer’s burden of proof at these hearings. After he had completed his testimony, HO Modelski allowed cross-examination. Immediately following my first question, HO Modelski interrupted and asked the officer a question: “Did you ever actually read the suspect his chemical test rights?” The answer was “not all of them, no.”
HO Modelski knew that I intended to ask extensive questions during today’s hearing. Potential criminal charges could be defended employing the officer’s testimony from the DLAD/DAAD hearing. Given that it was clear that the officer could not meet his burden, HO Modelski stopped the hearing and issued a favorable decision.
So… I won a case in one question!