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Judges reject man’s Department of Toxicology claims

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The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld the denial of the motion by a man charged with drunken driving to exclude any evidence or testimony from the state Department of Toxicology. The court rejected his argument that there were no rules or regulations on the books regarding the newly created department.

The Indiana General Assembly changed the operating or controlling authority of the Department of Toxicology of the Indiana University School of Medicine to the state Department of Toxicology, effective July 1, 2011. Tanner Piotrowksi, who faces three misdemeanor OWI charges, sought to exclude any evidence from the state department. His argument was based on statute, saying that the state department had to create its own rules by July 1, 2012, and since it did not, there are no existing regulations regarding officer training or breath test machines. Any certificates of training or maintenance or calibration of machines dated after July 1, 2012, should not be considered, he claimed.

Piotrowski was charged in December 2012.

The trial court denied his motion to exclude based upon its interpretation of I.C. 10-20-2 and I.C. 10-20-2-7.

In Tanner Piotrowski v. State of Indiana, 46A03-1306-CR-222, the state argued that if the Legislature had intended for the state department to promulgate an entirely new set of rules, it would have expressly said so.

“After reviewing the relevant statutes, we find that the legislature intended Ind. Code § 10-20-2-7 to effectuate a transfer of control of the Department of Toxicology from the Indiana University School of Medicine to the State of Indiana,” Judge Elaine Brown wrote. “Although the legislature transferred rulemaking authority to the State, it did not specifically require the State to promulgate a new set of rules regarding breath testing and gave the State discretion to rely upon the rules previously in existence. Accordingly, we conclude that the court did not err when it denied Piotrowski’s Motion to Exclude.”
 

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    November, 2014, I was charged with OWI/Endangering a person. I was not given a Breathalyzer test and the arresting officer did not believe that alcohol was in any way involved. I was self-overmedicated with prescription medications. I was taken to local hospital for blood draw to be sent to State Tox Lab. My attorney gave me a cookie-cutter plea which amounts to an ALCOHOL-related charge. Totally unacceptable!! HOW can I get my TOX report from the state lab???

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  1. Don't we have bigger issues to concern ourselves with?

  2. Anyone who takes the time to study disciplinary and bar admission cases in Indiana ... much of which is, as a matter of course and by intent, off the record, would have a very difficult time drawing lines that did not take into account things which are not supposed to matter, such as affiliations, associations, associates and the like. Justice Hoosier style is a far departure than what issues in most other parts of North America. (More like Central America, in fact.) See, e.g., http://www.theindianalawyer.com/indiana-attorney-illegally-practicing-in-florida-suspended-for-18-months/PARAMS/article/42200 When while the Indiana court system end the cruel practice of killing prophets of due process and those advocating for blind justice?

  3. Wouldn't this call for an investigation of Government corruption? Chief Justice Loretta Rush, wrote that the case warranted the high court’s review because the method the Indiana Court of Appeals used to reach its decision was “a significant departure from the law.” Specifically, David wrote that the appellate panel ruled after reweighing of the evidence, which is NOT permissible at the appellate level. **But yet, they look the other way while an innocent child was taken by a loving mother who did nothing wrong"

  4. Different rules for different folks....

  5. I would strongly suggest anyone seeking mediation check the experience of the mediator. There are retired judges who decide to become mediators. Their training and experience is in making rulings which is not the point of mediation.

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