An attorney running for town justice in Ossining, New York, was killed by a drunk driver while placing campaign signs along the side of the road. The attorney had previously served as an assistant district attorney in the Bronx and as a lieutenant colonel with the New York Guard. The driver, a 38-year-old woman, was arrested and charged with DUI after failing a field sobriety test. The woman was not injured in the incident and was driving on her way to work. The attorney was placing a campaign sign along the side of the road and was struck and killed when returning to his car. The woman is currently being held on $500,000 bond and is awaiting trial.
This case illustrates the fact that drunk drivers are a danger to pedestrians as well as to other drivers. Intoxicated drivers do not have the focus and the judgment of sober drivers due to the effects of alcohol, and are more likely to strike pedestrians on a sidewalk or in the road. Intoxicated drivers are a frequent source of injury or death for pedestrians.
Field sobriety tests are those used by law enforcement to gauge the level of intoxication of a driver. They include tests for a person’s balance, as well as for eye movement. Tests such as these are generally regarded as accurate, but inaccuracies can occur. Police may improperly administer them, or they may mistake a physical or mental handicap for drunkenness. Breathalyzer and blood alcohol tests also have issues with their accuracywith the possibility of improperly calibrated machines giving inaccurate results. The lab results of blood alcohol tests can be also be interfered with or improperly interpreted.
Any defendant in a DUI case is entitled to a vigorous criminal defense and a presumption of innocence until guilt is proven beyond a reasonable doubt. He or she has the legal right to question witnesses, dispute the admissibility of evidence, and challenge the accuracy of any field sobriety, Breathalyzer, or blood alcohol tests. Anyone accused of driving while intoxicated has the legal right to fight for their freedom from incarceration.
Source: Lohud.com, “Police: Nanuet drunken driver killed Ossining candidate on 9A,” Lee Higgins, Shawn Cohen & Marcela Rojas, Sept. 4, 2013,