A member of the Milton School Committee was sentenced this week after an arrest for operating his truck under the influence of alcohol. The Taunton Daily Gazette reported Jan. 4 that Christopher Huban and his Massachusetts OUI defense lawyer struck a deal with prosecutors in connection with a drunk-driving arrest New Year’s Day. A concerned driver called the police that day to report a possible intoxicated driver, and an off-duty police officer spotted Huban’s truck weaving into oncoming traffic and toward pedestrians. After being pulled over by an on-duty officer, Huban blew a blood-alcohol reading of .25, more than three times the legal limit of 0.08. At the hearing, Huban admitted that the facts were sufficient to convict him of drunk driving. His driver’s license was suspended for 45 days and he was placed on supervised probation, for which he will pay $65 a month. As part of the deal, the judge dismissed a negligent driving charge but let stand a citation for failure to stay within lanes.
The article mentions that this sentence is standard for first-offense OUIs. The article doesn’t specify this, but as a Massachusetts drunk driving criminal defense attorney, I strongly suspect that Huban was sentenced under the 24D/alternative disposition program. This program is indeed available for first offenses, along with some second offenses, as long as they are not responsible for any serious injury or death. Defendants who enter the 24D program typically serve up to one year of probation, a license suspension of 45 days, alcohol classes and several fines. This is in contrast to a one-year suspension and possible jail time for a first OUI conviction. And while a 24D plea doesn’t keep a prior offense off the driver’s record, an experienced Massachusetts OUI defense lawyer can often win a continuance without a finding, as in this case, that allows drivers to truthfully say they have never been convicted of a crime.
If you or someone you love is facing OUI charges in Massachusetts, you should call the Law Offices of Stephen Neyman. Even in cases where the defendant has a high BAC on the record, our office can frequently win reduced penalties or mount a strong defense based on mistakes or carelessness by police officers. To learn more at a consultation, please call our downtown Boston offices at (617) 263-6800 or send a message through our Web site.