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January 16, 2018 Criminal Law and Procedure

Operating while intoxicated charges are more than just drinking and driving. The traditional public service announcement commercial shows someone getting in the car after a long night of cocktails. However, a person could be charged and convicted of an operating while intoxicated crime for a variety of substances, including marijuana, opiate painkillers, or amphetamines. One way many people can get in trouble for a DUI is for driving after consuming inhalant chemicals. Known as huffing, this is the process of inhaling toxic substances that get you high. Driving after huffing is a type of operating while intoxicated crime that doesn’t get a lot of attention. At ArborYpsi Law, we focus on all types of OWI charges, including huffing. Read our article about driving after huffing to learn more about this type of charge.

Persons with a concealed pistol license face the loss of the license with many types of criminal convictions. Even a conviction to a charge of disorderly conduct will result in the loss of a CPL. What about a drinking and driving charge? The answer is yes, you will lose your concealed pistol license if convicted of a drinking and driving charge. How long will the CPL suspension last for? That depends on the type of drinking and driving charge you are ultimately convicted of. Either way, an operating while intoxicated-related conviction will mean the loss of your CPL. Read about Will I lose my CPL with a DUI Conviction to learn more about this area of law.

College student sexual misconduct hearings are more and more common now. These are university led investigations into alleged instances of sexual harassment or sexual assault. Each university will have a slightly different way of conducting this investigation. Universities were holding these without much interference from the Court until now. A federal judge has ruled that the University of Michigan must provide students accused of sexual misconduct with a live hearing. In this live hearing, U of M must allow cross examination of the student making an accusation against the accused student. Previously, the U of M was not allowing a live hearing, but that has changed now wit the shift in the legal landscape. Read our article on Court of Appeals Rules Universities Must Hold Hearings in He-Said She-Said Misconduct Cases.

Have you heard of a Drug Recognition Expert? These are police officers trained to detect impairment by certain types of drugs. They call themselves experts and their actions are shrouded in the veil of science. But is it really science? Are these cops really experts of anything? I would say the jury is out on that one. Anyone who calls themselves an expert is suspect. The reality is the “science” behind a DRE is not really science. What the DRE does is simplify an incredibly complex topic into neat little categories for easy consumption. The reality is they are pulling tricks on juries to get convictions, which is unacceptable. Read out article on What is a Drug Recognition Expert to learn more about this topic.

In many serious cases, a complaining witness, referred to as victim, can appear in court with a support dog. We all love dogs, of course. But the appearance of the dog could persuade the jury against the defendant in a trial. Does this deprive the defendant of the right to a fair trial? The Court of Appeals prevented the use of support dogs except in many cases in People v. Shorter. Read our blog post on whether a support dog will be allowed in the courtroom.

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Call Sam Bernstein at 734-883-9584 or e-mail at

Sam Bernstein is an Ann Arbor Criminal Defense Attorney.

ArborYpsi Law is located at 4158 Washtenaw Ave., Ann Arbor, MI 48108.

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