Monday, July 20, 2015

Two Clients Found Not Guilty in Back-to-Back Jury Trial Victories

Case #1: Milwaukee County Jury Finds Client Not Guilty of OWI-1st/PAC-1st (with .14 breath test result)

Recently, Dennis Melowski heard from another lawyer that our firm shouldn't expect the same level of success in Milwaukee as in other counties. The lawyer explained that prosecutors don't budge and the juries are unforgiving in drunk driving cases. In response, Dennis simply pointed to Attorney Sarvan Singh's most recent jury trial victory, a .14 breath test case in Milwaukee County. Against the DA's office self-described "top gun" DUI prosecutor no less.**

Attorney Singh represented AA, a young man with a lot at stake. He had just graduated college as a chemical engineer and had a fantastic and lucrative job overseas. However, his employer would not allow for any alcohol-related conviction. Therefore, his entire livelihood hinged on whether he was found not guilty of the drunk driving charges he was facing. Initially, AA looked like he was facing an uphill battle. He failed to properly stop at a stop sign; admitted to drinking; performed poorly on the field sobriety tests; and blew a .14. Moreover, the officer who stopped AA specializes in OWI arrests and had nearly one thousand drunk driving arrests under his belt.

Since AA had so much at stake, Attorney Singh attempted a resolution that would still allow AA to keep his job. However, the prosecutor flat-out refused. There was no other option but to present AA's case to a jury.

Given the facts, the prosecution was very confident in its case and demanded to the judge that it take precedence over other trials scheduled that same day. During the first day, the County paraded its witnesses on the stand with the expectation of a quick victory. However, on the second day, things changed very quickly when Attorney Singh got his chance at cross-examination. Multiple conflicts in the testimony of police witnesses was exposed to the jury, putting the prosecutor on his heels. Attorney Singh also masterfully exposed flaws in the way the breath test was administered to AA, leaving significant doubt about the reliability of the result. By the end of day two, there was not much left of the prosecutor's slam-dunk case. After an hour of deliberation, the jury returned verdicts of NOT GUILTY on both the OWI and PAC charges.

Once the jury returned its verdicts, the relief on AA's face was immediate. He kept his job and would not have this one black mark derail his promising future.

**Our office has actually never lost to this particular prosecutor.

Case#2: Waushara County Jury Finds CDL Client Not Guilty  of OWI-1st/PAC-1st (with .123 blood test result)

This case was destined for trial from the beginning. Not only was RT pulled over in a county that takes a hard-line approach to prosecuting accused drunk drivers, he also had some very difficult facts to overcome. Stopped for excessive speeding, RT ultimately gave multiple conflicting statements to the officer about how much he had to drink, according to the officer at least. On top of that, the officer found an open container of beer in the console area of RT's truck. Combine those allegations with alleged failed field sobriety tests on camera and a .123 blood test result and RT looked like he was facing some very long odds. However, given his CDL status, RT knew he needed to do whatever he could to avoid the career-ending stigma of a drunk driving conviction. After discussing his situation with the owner of a trucking company, RT was told there was only one attorney for the job: Dennis Melowski.

Knowing that the prosecutor he was dealing with would not likely plea bargain RT's case, Dennis prepared the case for trial. After meticulously combing through the lab records pertaining to RT's blood test, Dennis found a smoking gun. As it turns out, the machine used to analyze RT's blood test failed a calibration test the very same day RT's sample was tested. This cast significant doubt on the reliability of RT's result. Armed with his findings, Dennis was able to do substantial damage to the prosecutor's case when he cross-examined the lab analyst during the trial. The arresting officer fared no better. During the officer's evasive testimony, it became very apparent that many of his claims regarding RT were overstated, if not outright manufactured. In the end, it took the jury** only 40 minutes to find RT NOT GUILTY of both the OWI and PAC charges. It was the best outcome RT could have hoped for and he was overcome with relief when the jury's verdicts were read in court. RT was so happy, in fact, that he posted a 5-star review of Dennis' work in his case on the independent lawyer rating website The review is titled "Got My Life Back" and can be read by clicking the following link:

**Immediately after the trial, two of the jury members waited around to speak with Dennis outside the courthouse to tell him how impressed they were with his performance. They even asked him for his card.