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DWI hit and run accident

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Punisher_teaser_print01_max160_max50

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Posted about 6 years ago

 

What would you do as a patrol officer? You get dispatched to a hit and run accident behind a local bar. Two witnesses give you a LPN and a brief explanation of what happened. The two non-intoxicated witnesses tell you that a “drunk” man staggered to his truck and backed into a pull in the parking lot prior to pulling onto the street. When the “drunk” man pulled onto the street he struck a parked vehicle causing about $1,500 in damages. The “drunk” man flees the area in his truck. You work the accident and run the suspect’s LPN. The return on the LPN shows the suspect’s home to be less than 2 miles away. You drive over to the suspect’s house and located the truck with the matching LPN. The truck is parked in the driveway where you can see the front bumper damage matching the victim’s vehicle. You check the paint transfer and it matches up. You make contact with a woman in the house where the suspect’s truck is registered to. You ask to come in and speak with the owner of the truck and she lets you in. She says the owner is her boyfriend and that he is in bed. You wake up the suspect and he appears to be intoxicated. You explain why you are there and then you read him his Miranda Warnings. He agrees to talk to you and admits to being drunk and driving home. He says he did not hit any parked vehicles on the way home. You show him the damage on his truck and explain that two witnesses placed his truck at the scene. He then says he must have been so drunk that he did not realize he hit something. You place him into custody for leaving the scene of an accident and suspicion of DWI. On a side note he has had nothing to drink since he left the bar. He went straight home and went to bed.


 
He registers a .25 on a state certified breath test about an hour and a half after the accident. You book him for DWI and the accident. State rules of criminal procedure say you can make a warrantless arrest if you have “reasonable cause to believe that such a person has committed a traffic offense involving damage to property; or driving a vehicle under the influence of any intoxicating liquor or drug.”
 
You get to trial and the defense attorney says you violated his clients rights (search and seizure) because you did not inform the woman who answered the door that she had a right to refuse consent to search. You also did not have anyone in the house sign a form informing them of their rights pertaining to search and seizure. The defense argues that the arrest was invalid based on the officer not informing the residents of their right to deny entry. The defense says that the officer was searching for his client and that the arrest (seizure) was illegal and violated his clients constitutional rights. The judge has the prosecutor and the defense attorney write a brief on the case and eventually finds the suspect guilty of DWI after the briefs were submitted.
 
After speaking with fellow officers on this topic most said they would have let the DWI go and just completed an accident report. They also said if the drunk makes it home then they are off limits in their house and to just forget about it. What would you do?

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Rate This | Posted about 6 years ago

 

You did right, you needed no warrant and you sure as hell did not need to inform her of the right to refuse. Thats some BS. If some one confesses to killing some one a day after it happens do you need a warrant, hell no . Good Job on hooking him up!

123014_max600_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 6 years ago

 

I think you did your job.  Some people would not of went that far.  Dedication to the job is why you do it.  Yes, you could have taken the easy way out but you didn't.  Were you wrong?  No, you followed up on a call, you did not violate the suspects rights, and made the arrest/conviction.  Good for you.  Don't let others sway you from your decisions.  We learn everyday on this job.  You followed your gut don't let anyone else second guess you.  Some officer's would not have went through the effort you did.  I commend you.  And I hate DUI's and Hit and Runs.   

Kazan_pics__9__max50

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Rate This | Posted about 6 years ago

 

Great job! You did not violate anyones "rights". You ASKED to enter the residence and let in, you MIRANDIZED the suspect, he spoke freely to you. One of the better cases wrapped up and tied with a bow. It's also a plus the suspect pissed his money away on an atty and still was convicted for OWI and causing damage to an innocent persons property then running away.

Beach_st_pd_car_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 6 years ago

 

Where I work, I would not have been able to arrest the driver.


Always remember you're unique, just like everyone else.

I_fucked_up_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 6 years ago

 

   Home is not home base you are not safe, this isn't a childhood game of hide and seek. Good job on the arrest. The female allowed you in the house without incident. The suspect spoke to you after miranda and his statements made your case. If he would have said he started drinking after he got home you may have had a problem with the case. A DUI attorney never attacks the fact of his client being under the influence they only attack your PC. Always remember with every arrest you make, if they beat the charge they still took the ride and it cost them a lot of money and time. You did your job. Be safe.  

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Rate This | Posted about 6 years ago

 

You did exactly what you were supposed to do.  As for other Officers saying they would have just done an accident report and left it at that....that is called laziness. 

Policelinkbadge_max160_max160_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 6 years ago

 

Good arrest!  Timely and thorough.

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Rate This | Posted about 6 years ago

 

After reading all that you wrote...I must say, good job on the follow up. As for your fellow officers that say they would have let it go and just wrote the collision report....shame on you for not doing what you get paid to do.


As for your question. I do not believe it to be a matter of Illegal search and seizure......it was a freshly commited crime, you had evidence to support your reason for being at that address... you informed the woman that answered the door who you were and why you were there. She allowed you in. In this state if a LEO goes to a residence and ask to come in and the occupants do not object, then anything they hear or see is in plain view.


Sounds like the lawyer is trying to stall the court system. Do youresearch and you'll find under 4th amed you did nothing wrong. Keep your facts and evidence and witnesses together and thats the best you can do. As someone once said to me, even if you lose the case, you did your job that night....and thats what matters.....Again Good arrest.

Remember_max50_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 6 years ago

 

Legal arrest in the State of California...


You had legal authority


You had PC


You advised


You asked for entry.. you arent required to advise


Boyfirend also may have standing in the home.. this could be checked further


 


alls good and great job may I say.. you did everything right...

Photoshare_1__max50

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Rate This | Posted over 5 years ago

 

FSPD4387 says ...



What would you do as a patrol officer? You get dispatched to a hit and run accident behind a local bar. Two witnesses give you a LPN and a brief explanation of what happened. The two non-intoxicated witnesses tell you that a “drunk” man staggered to his truck and backed into a pull in the parking lot prior to pulling onto the street. When the “drunk” man pulled onto the street he struck a parked vehicle causing about $1,500 in damages. The “drunk” man flees the area in his truck. You work the accident and run the suspect’s LPN. The return on the LPN shows the suspect’s home to be less than 2 miles away. You drive over to the suspect’s house and located the truck with the matching LPN. The truck is parked in the driveway where you can see the front bumper damage matching the victim’s vehicle. You check the paint transfer and it matches up. You make contact with a woman in the house where the suspect’s truck is registered to. You ask to come in and speak with the owner of the truck and she lets you in. She says the owner is her boyfriend and that he is in bed. You wake up the suspect and he appears to be intoxicated. You explain why you are there and then you read him his Miranda Warnings. He agrees to talk to you and admits to being drunk and driving home. He says he did not hit any parked vehicles on the way home. You show him the damage on his truck and explain that two witnesses placed his truck at the scene. He then says he must have been so drunk that he did not realize he hit something. You place him into custody for leaving the scene of an accident and suspicion of DWI. On a side note he has had nothing to drink since he left the bar. He went straight home and went to bed.


 
He registers a .25 on a state certified breath test about an hour and a half after the accident. You book him for DWI and the accident. State rules of criminal procedure say you can make a warrantless arrest if you have “reasonable cause to believe that such a person has committed a traffic offense involving damage to property; or driving a vehicle under the influence of any intoxicating liquor or drug.”
 
You get to trial and the defense attorney says you violated his clients rights (search and seizure) because you did not inform the woman who answered the door that she had a right to refuse consent to search. You also did not have anyone in the house sign a form informing them of their rights pertaining to search and seizure. The defense argues that the arrest was invalid based on the officer not informing the residents of their right to deny entry. The defense says that the officer was searching for his client and that the arrest (seizure) was illegal and violated his clients constitutional rights. The judge has the prosecutor and the defense attorney write a brief on the case and eventually finds the suspect guilty of DWI after the briefs were submitted.
 
After speaking with fellow officers on this topic most said they would have let the DWI go and just completed an accident report. They also said if the drunk makes it home then they are off limits in their house and to just forget about it. What would you do?

I disagree with the officers who advised letting the DUI go. You were within the time frame (2hours). The driver admitted to the DUI and admitted to not consuming after leaving the bar and drinking. You also have to give it to the Def. Attorneys. They made good arguements. But, I am not familiar with any presidents set that say that we have to advise people of their right to refusal. We simply need to ask permission. A lot of agency's, mine included do use consent to search forms that spell those rights out. However, that is solely to prevent the Defense from making the arguements that they did in this case.


It sounds like a good arrest and excellent prosecution. Kudos to you and the Prosecutors Office. 

Pl_avatar_max50

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Rate This | Posted over 5 years ago

 

I second that. The time frame indicates that he went directly there; your investigation was timely and accurate; there was no evidence or claim that he consumed any alcholic beverage after departing the bar; you mirandized him and he agreed to talk. Nice job, I would have done it the same way.


-Groan-. I just noticed this thread is six months old. Oh well .....

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Rate This | Posted over 5 years ago

 

attorneys will say whatever bs to try and win their case. You had a lawful entry, you did a fantastic job and your fellow officers are waaaay off base telling you if he made it home he is off limits. not true

Az_phx_motorcade1a_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 5 years ago

 

Hook and book, I've had the same type situation, driver hit a tree and walked home, 30 miutes later we contact him and he claims he's been hitting the bottle hard since he got home, but nothing before the accident, based on my extensive training I arrested him as he was way too intoxicated to be that drunk only after 30 minutes, he later plead out.

Evil_max50

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Rate This | Posted almost 5 years ago

 

As its applied here; The Ferrier Warnings.  You must advised a person of there right to restrict, refuse or revoke the search at anytime if you are seeking evidence of a crime in a residence.


Since it does not appear you were seeking evidence or to even search then it would not apply.  Its sounds good to me.  Whether another officer would arrest on the DUI or not has no bearing on the legality of the arrest as that would be discretionary.


You have the rest of your life to solve the problem, how long your life lasts depends on how well you do it. -Clint Smith

Respect it

Cpd_max50

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Rate This | Posted almost 5 years ago

 

Had a similiar hit and run DWI here in NJ. Did what you did. Caught flak from my Chief but got a conviction at trial. So yea you did the right thing. I guess the other route you could have gone was issued a leaving the scene summons and had the driver go to court.. Either way.. Good job