2nd Degree DWI Charges Dismissed

2nd Degree DWI Charges Dismissed

Minnesota DWI lawyer, John Arechigo, recently achieved a dismissal of all charges for a client facing multiple 2nd Degree DWI charges in Scott County.  The client was facing a minimum of 90 days in jail.  After a thorough investigation into the case, which included review of several squad video recordings, it became clear that the State lacked sufficient evidence to prove that the client physically controlled a motor vehicle.  After a contested hearing in front of a respected Scott County Judge, the Judge dismissed all charges.

Minnesota DWI Based on Physical Control

The State can file DWI charges against someone even when there is no evidence the individual ever actually drove a motor vehicle.  Minnesota DWI law allows for DWI charges to be filed under what’s known as the theory of physical control.  Physical control is a term that the courts have defined to refer to a person’s control over a motor vehicle.  The circumstances of a DWI based on physical control must show that the charged individual had access to the motor vehicle and had the ability to operate the vehicle.  The most common type of DWI based on on physical control usually involves a person asleep in a vehicle with the keys either in the ignition, in the vehicle or otherwise in the person’s possession.  Minnesota DWI law allows for DWI charges in these circumstances because it is presumed that the individual has the ability to operate the vehicle, even though he or she may be passed out at the time they are found by the police.  This was how the State attempted to pursue 2nd Degree DWI charges against our client.

Insufficient Evidence to Support Physical Control

The responding officer in this case found our client asleep on the ground next to a running vehicle.  While it may have appeared as though the vehicle belonged to our client, the police officer failed to make that determination prior to arresting our client.  The officer who testified at the hearing on the motion to dismiss was unable to say how long our client had been at the location the client was found, when the client got there, whether the client had been driving, or whether the running vehicle even belonged to our client.  The officer assumed the vehicle was owned by the client and that the client had driven the vehicle.  The officer failed to develop the necessary facts needed to support an arrest for DWI and gather the appropriate evidence needed to support a charge of DWI based on physical control.  The Judge quickly realized the officer lacked sufficient evidence.

Free Consultations with an Experienced DWI Attorney

This case is a perfect example of why it is a good idea to consult with an experienced Minnesota DWI attorney before making any decisions on your case.  This particular client never planned to hire a DWI attorney on her case.  The client had planned to simply go to court and accept whatever happened.  The client eventually came in for a consultation only after a friend suggested talking to a DWI attorney.

We offer free DWI consultations.  Give us a call.  This client was very happy to have called.

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What Our Client's are Saying:

  • When I was injured at work and the insurance company denied my claim, I didn’t know what I was going to do. I had medical bills mounting, no income, and three children to take care of. Josh helped me understand the process, how long it would take, and in the end, he got all my medical bills paid and got me paid for my injury. In one of the worst times in my life, it helped to able to count on an attorney who understands the law and who was on my side every step of the way.

  • I got injured when a piece of sheet rock fell on my back. The insurance company doctor said my herniated disc was age related and not because of what fell on my back. The attorneys at Arechigo & Stokka, got me paid until we had to go to court, and in the end got all my bills paid and more. I cannot thank them enough.

  • My car crash was one of the worst things that ever happened to me. The insurance company wanted me to settle my case right away without speaking to an attorney. Friends told me I didn’t need an attorney. After months of trying to do things on my own, I knew I need to obtain the advice of an attorney. I am so glad I did. Josh and John helped me get all my bills paid and get compensated for all I went through with my injury.

  • John represented me so well during my case. Being from a private firm made a difference, he was able to timely respond to my questions throughout and was always available any time day or night. John was always very well prepared and hard working. I highly recommend his assistance as a defense attorney

  • John was very helpful throughout the whole process, kept me up to date and informed on all aspects of the case and we achieved the desired successful result.

  • John and I have worked as opposing counsel in the past and I have observed his work in court many times. John is a highly skilled trial lawyer and I endorse him.

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    Personal Injury
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    DWI / DUI
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    Domestic Assault
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    Opposing Counsel