Sunday, June 29, 2014

King County Sheriff's Deputy Arrested for DUI

A King County sheriff's deputy who crashed his patrol car while on duty in February has been charged with hit and run and driving under the influence.

Deputy Mark Rockwood had just started his shift before 7 a.m. on February 28 when dispatchers began getting calls about his driving. Rockwood, who was in a Shoreline police car, was driving erratically, running stop lights and stopping in the middle of intersections while driving northbound on Highway 99 in Lynnwood, according to charging papers.

He eventually rear-ended a driver and came to a stop near NE 132nd Street and State Route 527. Officers from several jurisdictions soon arrived on scene and began interviewing Rockwood.

Police say the 47-year-old appeared extremely confused and disoriented. He was wearing his King County Sheriff's Office jumpsuit, but he was disheveled and the suit was unzipped in the front with his bulletproof vest showing, according to court documents.

Police say Rockwood had difficulty standing and had wobbly legs. Officers noticed he was wearing his gun belt, but his gun was missing. He said he didn't know where the gun was and didn't appear concerned about its whereabouts, according to police.

Officers didn't smell alcohol on Rockwood, so they called in a drug recognition expert from the Washington State Patrol. The trooper drove Rockwood to a nearby police station and said the deputy fell asleep in the car during the short trip.

At the station, Rockwood failed several sobriety tests and fell asleep again during another test.

He told the trooper he had taken at least four Ambien sleeping pills between midnight and 2 a.m. He also said he had taken a medication for acid reflux, another for foot fungus, Lorazepam, Xanax, Lamisyl, acetaminophen, Oxyperoly and Celexa, which is an antidepressant, according to charging documents.

Rockwood was then arrested for suspicion of DUI. A blood test later showed he had taken Celexa, a cold medication and Ambien.

Officers found Rockwood's personal car parked at a nearby fire station. It was damaged, and police searched the area and found a stop sign that had been hit with a car and knocked over. Investigators say the paint transfer shows that Rockwood's car could have hit the sign.

The deputy is a 19-year-veteran of the sheriff's office. He was placed on administrative leave during the investigation, but is currently back on duty and working patrol, according to the sheriff's office.

 Now more than ever, one cited for DUI is well advised to hire a qualified Seattle DUI attorney as soon as possible. Driving Under the Influence allegations in Washington State are extremely serious, and can cause havoc on a person’s personal and professional life. Anyone charged with DUI in Washington State should immediately seek the assistance of a seasoned Seattle DUI lawyer. The Seattle DUI attorneys that make up the criminal defense team of SQ Attorneys are highly qualified and reputable Seattle DUI defense lawyers that are dedicated to providing top notch, aggressive representation for those arrested for DUI in Western Washington. The team creates success by working with law enforcement and the prosecuting attorney’s office to ensure that all facts and circumstances related to the criminal allegations are considered in creating the fairest, most equitable and just resolution possible in light of all the surrounding circumstances.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

PA Lawyer Accepts Oral Sex as Fee

Applying a new Pennsylvania legal ethics rule for the first time, the state's supreme court has OK'd a one-year law license suspension for a suburban Philadelphia lawyer who admitted he accepted oral sex as a fee for representing a client in a driving-under-the-influence case.

David H. Knight agreed to the attorney disciplinary sanction and was given a lesser penalty than he might otherwise have received because of his cooperation.

According to the disciplinary petition, this is the first time a lawyer has been sanctioned in the state for violating Pennsylvania Rule of Professional Conduct 1.8(j), which became effective in 2005. It flatly prohibits sex with a client, regardless of whether there is consent or the client is prejudiced as a result. Washington rules of professional conduct (RPC) strictly prohibits a lawyer from engaging in sexual contact with any client.

The old standard, Rule 1.7, states that "a lawyer shall not represent a client if the representation involves a concurrent conflict of interest." It appears that no lawyer had been sanctioned under the old rule, either, the legal publication says.

If you or a loved one is in a bind as a result of a criminal charge, immediately contact a Seattle criminal attorney. A Seattle criminal attorney is not going to judge you, and understands that everyone makes mistakes. Hiring a Seattle criminal lawyer to help can – at a minimum – reduce those penalties, and can help direct people on how to best deal with their criminal charge. So it should go without saying that someone cited for criminal charge should hire a qualified Seattle criminal lawyer as soon as possible.

Monday, June 16, 2014

AZ Supreme Court Rules No THC No Conviction

Drivers whose blood carries trace amounts of a metabolite of marijuana can not be found guilty of driving while intoxicated unless there’s actual evidence that the drug impaired them, the Arizona Supreme Court found on Tuesday.

A trial judge dismissed the charges against the man, who in a pretrial motion argued that the blood test did not reveal the presence of THC, or "its metabolite," Hydroxy-THC. The state, which according to the opinion presented expert witness testimony that it did not test for that because it doesn’t “exist in the blood for very long” and converts quickly to Carboxy-THC, filed an appeal. According to Capital Media services, Carboxy-THC can remain in someone's bloodstream for up to 30 days.

The opinion provides protection for Arizona's more than 40,000 medical marijuana users and for drivers visiting from Washington or Colorado, where recreational marijuana use is legal, the article states.

Arizona legalized medical marijuana in 2010. The Arizona Supreme Court opinion does not mention whether the defendant had a prescription for medical marijuana, but does note that the state’s position could be problematic for residents who use the drug legally.

If you or a loved one is in a bind as a result of a DUI, immediately contact a Seattle DUI attorney. A DUI lawyer is not going to judge you, and understands that everyone makes mistakes. Hiring a Seattle DUI lawyer to help can – at a minimum – reduce those penalties, and can help direct people on how to best deal with their DUI charge. So it should go without saying that someone cited for DUI should hire a qualified Seattle DUI lawyer as soon as possible. Driving Under the Influence charges can cause havoc on a person’s personal and professional life. Anyone charged with DUI in Washington State should immediately seek the assistance of a seasoned Seattle DUI lawyer.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Downward Trend in Number of DUI Arrests

The Washington State Patrol now has a full year of data covering driving arrests and crashes since private retailers took over liquor sales. Despite hard alcohol being much more widely available, there was no increase in DUIs and drunk driving accidents.

Jason Mercier with Washington Policy Center compiled the numbers from Washington State Patrol statistics. "Privatization didn't improve the numbers necessarily but it didn't make it any worse either." Mercier adds, "I don't think you can draw a correlation that because of private sales now we have fewer alcohol related arrests."

But State Patrol data does show a continued improving trend downward with 2,347 DUI collisions and 19,703 DUI arrests during the first year of privatization. That is down from 21,577 DUI arrests in 2011-2012.

The Washington State Patrol is down 80 troopers currently and as a result, the number of arrests is much more directly connected to the number of police officers currently patrolling.

If you or a loved one is in a bind as a result of a DUI, immediately contact a Seattle DUI attorney. A DUI lawyer is not going to judge you, and understands that everyone makes mistakes. Hiring a Seattle DUI lawyer to help can – at a minimum – reduce those penalties, and can help direct people on how to best deal with their DUI charge. So it should go without saying that someone cited for DUI should hire a qualified Seattle DUI lawyer as soon as possible. Driving Under the Influence charges can cause havoc on a person’s personal and professional life. Anyone charged with DUI in Washington State should immediately seek the assistance of a seasoned Seattle DUI lawyer.