A 51-year-old man from South Haven, Michigan, was recently arrested in Bloomingdale, a village about 25 miles west of Kalamazoo. According to police, prosecutors have charged the man with drunk driving and possession of marijuana.
The man was pulled over as he drove on West Kalamazoo Street in the early morning hours on a recent weekend. Police arrested the man after allegedly finding two grams of marijuana and after the man failed field sobriety tests.
People from all walks of life can find themselves faced with charges of drinking and driving or operating while impaired. The consequences of an OWI can be severe and could include jail, probation, license restrictions, suspensions and revocations, fines, costs and additional fees imposed by the Secretary of State.
A person charged with an OWI may be able to challenge the constitutionality of the arresting officer's actions. For example, the officer may not have had probable cause for the arrest, or the officer might not have correctly administered field sobriety tests.
When a person's driver's license is revoked because of an OWI conviction, that person bears the burden of proving that police acted improperly. Michigan residents in this situation should consider consulting an advocate who understands the impact of an OWI conviction and the license revocation and restoration process.
Such an advocate could assist a person convicted of an OWI to avoid a criminal record, avoid jail, or otherwise minimize the impact of the conviction. This includes fighting for their driving privileges in the Secretary of State's license hearing.
Source: Kalamazoo Gazette, "South Haven man arrested on drunken driving, marijuana charges in Bloomingdale," Ed Finnerty, April 1, 2012