Category: DUAC

How to Fight the DMV and Win

The S.C. Court of Appeals decision in Davis v. SCDMV is the story of how an ordinary person can fight arbitrary, ridiculous decisions by the DMV and win. The DMV tried to revoke Davis’ license as a habitual traffic offender six years after his third conviction for DUS. Davis fought the revocation at an admin [..]

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No Right to Counsel in South Carolina Summary Courts

Of course there is a right to counsel, at least when a person is sentenced to jail time, but it is systematically denied to defendants in our state’s summary courts. Indigent defendants in S.C.’s summary courts typically are not provided with court-appointed counsel, even in serious cases such as DUI or domestic violence (CDV).  In [..]

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DUI – Standardized Field Sobriety Tests (SFST’s)

In South Carolina and all states, there are only three standardized field sobriety tests (SFST’s) that have been approved by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) for use in DUI detection: the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGN) test, the One Leg Stand test, and the Walk and Turn test.  Once an officer makes an initial [..]

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DUI – Vertical Gaze Nystagmus

During a typical DUI related traffic stop, the officer will perform what is called Standardized Field Sobriety Tests (SFST’s) on the driver.  The only three tests that have been approved (standardized) by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) are the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGN), Walk and Turn, and One-Leg Stand.  NHTSA conducted extensive research [..]

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State v. Walters – DUI – HGN Test Does Not Have to Show Suspect’s Eyes

In State v. Walters, the South Carolina Court of Appeals reversed the York County Circuit Court’s dismissal of a DUI second offense based on the videotape statute.  Like I said a few weeks ago, South Carolina’s DUI statutes are working as intended and there is no unreasonable “DUI camera loophole.”  The videotape requirements ensure that [..]

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DUI Camera Loophole?

Every year in South Carolina, there is a push by prosecutors, police, MADD, and the media to “fix” the “loopholes” in South Carolina’s DUI laws.  There is no loophole.  “Loophole” or “technicality” is the rhetoric used by police, prosecutors, and victims advocates when describing constitutional rights or any rights granted to people accused of crimes.  [..]

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Birchfield v. North Dakota – DUI – Criminal Penalties for Refusing a Blood Draw are Unconstitutional

In Birchfield v. North Dakota, decided on June 23, 2016, the United States Supreme Court consolidated three driving under the influence (DUI) cases from North Dakota and Minnesota.  On the facts of each case, the Court held that: 1) states cannot make it a criminal offense for a DUI suspect to refuse consent for a [..]

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DUI and DUAC in South Carolina

DUI Defined S.C. Code § 56-5-2930 defines the elements of DUI (drinking under the influence) as: driving a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol and/or other drugs or substances to the extent that the driver’s faculties to drive are materially and appreciably impaired. In other words, if because of alcohol and/or drugs a [..]

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