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The Patterson Law Firm

Can Diabetes Really Skew Breath Test Results?

Can Diabetes Really Skew Breath Test Results?

When people take breath tests on the roadside during law enforcement traffic stops, many different factors may influence the results – even diabetes. Breathalyzer tests are not perfect, and the effects of diabetes could lead to an inflated blood alcohol concentration (BAC) reading. How Could Diabetes Affect a Breathalyzer Reading? Diabetes impacts the body’s ability to produce or respond to insulin, which is a hormone. When the body cannot use insulin properly or has too little insulin, glucose builds up in the blood. A build-up of glucose in the bloodstream is called high blood sugar, or hyperglycemia. Untreated hyperglycemia can lead the body...

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How Does the Judge Decide on a Criminal Sentence?

How Does the Judge Decide on a Criminal Sentence?

When a criminal defendant gets sentenced for a crime, the judge decides the ultimate sentence based on several different factors. Sentencing happens after the jury comes back with a guilty verdict or after the defendant pleads guilty. A plea of guilty could happen at the initial hearing when the defendant is charged, or more often after the defendant reaches a deal with the prosecutor to plead guilty in exchange for a reduced sentence or probation. Factors that affect sentencing could include: A mandatory minimum sentence set by law for a certain crime Repeat offenses Characteristics of the victim or the crime ...

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Why an Experienced DUI Lawyer Is Worth It

Why an Experienced DUI Lawyer Is Worth It

When you need a lawyer to help you fight DUI charges, hiring an experienced one is worth it. Going with the cheapest legal advice does not always turn out well. Here’s why. Knowledge of the System A more experienced lawyer should have more knowledge of “the system” for criminal cases. For example, the lawyer may know many local prosecutors, have tried cases before many local judges, and may even have been a prosecutor before becoming a defense attorney. Knowledge gained from these experiences and the connections the lawyer develops can be invaluable. The lawyer may have more leverage to negotiate a...

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The Risk of Juror Prejudice During Oklahoma Drug Trials

The Risk of Juror Prejudice During Oklahoma Drug Trials

During Oklahoma drug trials, defendants may face a risk of juror prejudice. While many people are aware of jurors’ role in deciding a criminal case, many may be unaware of how hidden biases and prejudices affect that case’s outcome. Jury Selection When a criminal case goes to trial, lawyers have the opportunity to screen out potential jurors during a process called jury selection. While the lawyers do not always need a reason to eliminate a potential juror, they often attempt to make decisions based on obvious or hidden prejudice against their clients. For example, the lawyers or the judge may ask questions about...

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Murder v. Manslaughter in Oklahoma DUI Cases

Murder v. Manslaughter in Oklahoma DUI Cases

Oklahomans charged with DUI after seriously hurting or killing someone while driving may wonder about the charges against them. Drivers may be charged with first degree manslaughter in DUI cases, and it is different than a murder charge. What Is Murder Under the Law? Murder (or as lawyers call it, homicide) involves “malice aforethought”. This means that a person who killed another person had the intent to seriously harm or kill, or had an extreme and reckless disregard for life. Drunk drivers or drivers under the influence of drugs are not charged with murder very often, usually because it is hard...

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Revealing the Flaws in Breathalyzer Testing Procedures in Court

Revealing the Flaws in Breathalyzer Testing Procedures in Court

As DUI defense attorneys know, drivers may have excellent arguments that breathalyzer testing results should be excluded from consideration in court. Flaws in administering and interpreting breath tests abound. Which Kinds of Flaws in Breath Testing Can Be Shown in Court? The list of potential flaws in breath testing for DUI is long: Incorrect directions were given to a driver who takes a breathalyzer; Miscalibrated breathalyzer device used; Broken or old breathalyzer device used; Maintenance procedures for the breathalyzer were not followed; The specific model of breathalyzer has a fatal design flaw; Law enforcement broke the chain of custody for the results; ...

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Revealing the Flaws in Blood Testing Procedures in Court

Revealing the Flaws in Blood Testing Procedures in Court

If you received a blood test after a DUI arrest, you can reveal the flaws in blood testing procedures in court. Building a defense may involve challenging the basis for law enforcement’s determination that you were impaired – the blood test results. Results can be thrown out for a number of reasons: flaws in giving the test, the testing method used, storing and transporting the sample, and more. Flaws in Giving the Test  When giving a blood test, lab technicians must follow specific procedures for drawing blood and collecting the samples. Many lab techs have very little training on blood draws....

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What Is a Certified Drug Recognition Expert in Oklahoma?

What Is a Certified Drug Recognition Expert in Oklahoma?

In Oklahoma, certain law enforcement officers trained as “Certified Drug Recognition Experts” may assess drivers’ impairment at the roadside or the police station. While these “experts” do receive education and information on spotting impaired drivers, there are ways to challenge their expertise in court. What Is a Certified Drug Recognition Expert (DRE)? The state recognizes law enforcement officers who have completed the Drug Evaluation and Classification Program’s (DECP) training as Certified Drug Recognition Experts. This training has specific educational requirements for certification. The International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) established these requirements. In other...

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You Served Your Sentence for a DUI or Drug Crime. Now What?

You Served Your Sentence for a DUI or Drug Crime. Now What?

Finally, you finished serving your sentence for a DUI or a drug crime. Whether you had to spend time in jail or prison, or you had to pay fines and take alcohol education classes, it is all over. Now you may be wondering what is next. Double-Check that You Completed All Terms of the Sentence First, double-check with your lawyer or the court that you have truly completed all the requirements of your sentence. Sometimes there will be a requirement saying that you have to take random BAC tests or check in with a probation officer for months or years after you...

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Employment Consequences of a DUI or Drug Arres

Employment Consequences of a DUI or Drug Arrest

After a DUI or drug arrest, you could face employment consequences that greatly affect your life. When you are already facing a legal case and possible imprisonment, facing issues at your job could feel overwhelming. Know your rights and know what to expect after your arrest. Some employers could care less about your arrest history, while it is very important to others. This often comes up in unexpected ways. For example, your employer may care about your arrest because it makes you miss work. If you get arrested and spend time in jail waiting to be charged in court, you might...

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