Blood DWI challenges- Fairfax DUI lawyer addresses them
Blood DWI challenges must be made timely and effectively says Fairfax DUI lawyer
Blood DWI challenges are essential for your lawyer to be able to make timely and effectively when you are a Virginia DUI defendant, and your blood has been drawn and analyzed after driving for determining your blood alcohol concentration (BAC). As a Fairfax DUI lawyer having by now defended against well over one hundred blood draw DWI cases alleging driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs under Virginia Code § 18.2-266 (often working with a defense forensic toxicology expert witness, and often developing defenses against the admissibility and reliability of hospital blood testing and analysis), I have by now thankfully developed the ready ability to understand the relevant science so as to pursue my clients’ best possible defense. Whether your criminal defense lawyer is dealing with his first, twentieth or two hundredth blood BAC defense, s/he must be sufficiently schooled in the relevant science and law, because doing otherwise can result in an attorney who is treading water at best and in over their head at worst. The Virginia Court of Appeals has highlighted the many moving parts that can happen all at once during such a trial. Shelton v. Virginia, Record No 1044-22- 1 (Oct. 24, 2023) (unpublished).
What are my potential Virginia DUI lawyer’s knowledge, abilities and devotion for blood DWI challenges?
Expect that your Virginia assistant commonwealth’s attorney (prosecutor) has already attended at least one intensive multiday seminar on prosecuting such cases and responding to blood DWI challenges. Perhaps your prosecutor is also on one or more email listserv with other prosecutors on such cases. Your prosecutor will consult with the DFS analyst in your case and DFS scientists in general. Ask your potential and hired lawyer the extent to which they have a least the equivalent or superior ability and knowledge to the prosecutor in your case. For me, I have the experience successfully defending hundreds of DWI defendants, and taking over two hundred such cases to trial, as well as being among the small percentage of Virginia DUI defenders who is a member of the National College of DUI Defense (NCDD) or its equivalent organization. I am among the small percentage of such lawyers who has been trained by one of the nation’s top trainers to police in administering field sobriety tests (FSTs / SFSTs ) to people, including my having conducted such tests in a controlled situation to people who have consumed alcohol without my knowing in advance how much they have consumed.
Should I ask my Virginia DUI lawyer if and how s/he will object to the trial admission of the hospital’s and Department of Forensic Science’s (DFS’s) BAC analysis of my blood?
How will you know how good will be your potential Virginia DUI lawyer for blood DWI challenges unless you ask detailed questions about that? Of course, as with all inquiries, this can be done diplomatically, and a qualified lawyer will welcome such questions and may be able to hit at least some of them out of the ballpark. Do not be like me, having failed to insist on an answer to my most essential posed question of my own lawyer (here a great business lawyer) about his billing structure. (The only reason I was less likely to be harmed if his billing was not the fairness he assured (it was fair) is that we had developed a good rapport by having previously worked together as attorneys.) Ask your essential questions before choosing your Virginia DUI lawyer. You will be glad you did.
How will my Virginia DUI lawyer obtain, analyze, and handle the mountains of data involved in my blood DWI challenge?
Your Virginia DUI lawyer’s blood DWI challenge for you must start long before your trial date, including obtaining discovery and evidence, filing a request for and objection to your certificate of analysis, filing a motion for a portion of your drawn blood to be transferred to a private lab for analysis, subpoenaing the DFS analyst’s records, determining with you about whether to obtain a defense forensic analyst, and working with that defense expert. Is your potential and actual attorney up for such such challenges? As him or her not only about that, but about how s/he will handle all the evidence and testimony flying left and right and upside down at trial and how s/he will handle improvident evidentiary and procedural rulings by your judge.
Nine defense objections are of little value if the most key objection is missed for blood DWI challenges
Left unclear in the above-addressed unpublished Shelton decision from the Virginia Court of Appeals is whether the blood draw witness testified at trial, and, if not, what objections (if any) the defense lawyer raised to such an absence as part of blood DWI challenges. One thing made clear in Shelton is that the defense attorney did not object to the admission into evidence of several pages of the defendant’s hospital records, which I surmise from the content of Shelton included the hospital’s own analysis of Shelton’s BAC (rather than a DFS analysis), where it is common that the prosecutor and police will not be able to produce the hospital employee who drew the blood for the hospital’s analysis, nor produce the hospital analyst. Shelton’s lawyer made plenty of other objections, and I am wondering why no objection was made to the admission of these hospital records. So much is happening at trial that a good criminal defense lawyer must be like an eagle hawk ready to pounce on any essential pray that comes his or her way and to fight off competing birds.
A trial is not a trial is a trial
Before I shifted to criminal defense, I was speaking with a lawyer who worked in criminal defense and prosecution for many years and who was doing plenty of essential public interest work. I was stunned then and remain stunned when he told me that “a trial is a trial is a trial.” Yes, to a point, but your Virginia DUI lawyer better know the essential law, science, and trial skills and actions that are needed for your blood DWI challenges and all other aspects of your defense. S/he who hesitates to find all that out about his or her potential Virginia DUI lawyer may live to regret not asking.
Fairfax DUI lawyer Jonathan Katz has been described by one client as having killer instincts in defense of his clients. Jon’s sole mission in defending you is in obtaining as much justice as possible for you. Call 703-383-1100 for your free in-person confidential consultation with Jon Katz about your court-pending case.