For Easton, Massachusetts Police Sergeant James McAvoy last Saturday morning was a first. He observed two motor vehicles both operating at a high rate of speed around 2:00 a.m. He stopped both vehicles. One was driven by Silvano Dossantos of Quincy, Massachusetts and the other by Christina Conway of Easton, Massachusetts. According to McAvoy, both were operating under the influence of alcohol (OUI), driving recklessly and speeding. It was reported that McEvoy was on patrol when he noticed the cars speeding and driving close to one another. He estimated the speed to be around seventy miles per hour. Charges are now pending in the Taunton District Court.
Aside from the speeding this article offers nothing relative to evidence of impairment due to the effects of alcohol. There is no mention of either of these women taking a breathalyzer test or field sobriety tests. Reading this report would be interesting. Most DUI defense lawyers in Massachusetts and other states will tell you the same thing. DUI police reports appear to be boilerplate. You can often tell which officer wrote the report just by reading the first paragraph in the narrative. I have said on numerous occasions that keeping a record of police officer DUI reports would be the best cross-examination tool for defense lawyers. The reports typically contain the following information: 1) that the operator was either operating at a high rate of speed or weaving over the marked lanes, 2) that after the stop the officer approached the vehicle and immediately detected a strong odor of an alcoholic beverage, 3) that the suspect had difficulty producing his license and registration, 4) that he asked the operator to get out of the vehicle and when doing so the operator was unsteady on his feet and 5) that the individual had bloodshot and glassy eyes. Police officers also have another group of facts in their reports that pertain to the defendant’s performance taking the field sobriety tests. These too are seemingly boilerplate. I will share these in another blog post. I expect and hope that there will be a day in the not too distant future when Massachusetts DUI Defense Lawyers will collect and share these police reports and expose the routine and often questionable nature of police officer testimony in OUI cases.
Attorney Stephen Neyman has been successfully defending OUI Cases in Massachusetts for over twenty years. If you have a question about a drunk driving case call our office at 617-263-6800 or contact us online.