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Officer had probable cause to believe defendant drove while drunk

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The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the denial of a man’s petition for judicial review involving his refusal to take a chemical test for intoxication. The judges found the evidence supported that the officer had probable cause that Paul Hassfurther drove his truck while intoxicated and that he knowingly refused to take the chemical test.

A 911 call led Oakland City Lieutenant Timothy Gaines to check out a report of a drunk driver who pulled into a gas station. The caller gave her name, described the truck, and followed it to the gas station. There, Gaines found the driver – Hassfurther – who admitted he had been driving the truck and he had drank the night before. Hassfurther showed signs of intoxication. He refused to take a portable breath test, to which Gaines informed Hassfurther that his license would be suspended for a year. Hassfurther then took that test and alcohol was detected in his system.

After arriving at jail, Gaines told Hassfurther his prior conviction for OWI would result in a two-year suspension if he refused to take the chemical test for intoxication. Hassfurther again refused, and he was later charged with OWI. The state alleged that he knowingly refused to take the chemical test.

He sought judicial review, arguing the officer didn’t have probable cause that he drove drunk, he wasn’t properly advised of his rights, and he didn’t knowingly refuse the chemical text for intoxication.

In Paul Hassfurther v. State of Indiana, 26A01-1208-CR-350, the Court of Appeals affirmed the denial of judicial review. The evidence shows a concerned citizen called 911, Gaines saw Hassfurther display signs of intoxication, and he admitted to police he drove the truck and had been drinking. Gaines also advised Hassfurther several times that his license would be suspended if he refused to submit to the chemical test and told Hassfurther that a prior conviction for OWI would result in a two-year suspension.


 

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  1. I need an experienced attorney to handle a breach of contract matter. Kindly respond for more details. Graham Young

  2. I thought the slurs were the least grave aspects of her misconduct, since they had nothing to do with her being on the bench. Why then do I suspect they were the focus? I find this a troubling trend. At least she was allowed to keep her law license.

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  5. First comment on this thread is a fitting final comment on this thread, as that the MCBA never answered Duncan's fine question, and now even Eric Holder agrees that the MCBA was in material error as to the facts: "I don't get it" from Duncan December 1, 2014 5:10 PM "The Grand Jury met for 25 days and heard 70 hours of testimony according to this article and they made a decision that no crime occurred. On what basis does the MCBA conclude that their decision was "unjust"? What special knowledge or evidence does the MCBA have that the Grand Jury hearing this matter was unaware of? The system that we as lawyers are sworn to uphold made a decision that there was insufficient proof that officer committed a crime. How can any of us say we know better what was right than the jury that actually heard all of the the evidence in this case."

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