Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Two Trials and Two Not Guilty Verdicts for Attorney Matt Murray's Clients

Case #1: Washington County Jury Finds Client Not Guilty in OWI-2nd Case with .20 Blood Test Result

Our client, CK, allegedly stumbled out of a bar, drove over some traffic cones and traveled home. Witnesses called 911 and, within 10 minutes, police were knocking on CK's front door. Although CK answered the door, she was immediately arrested for Obstructing an Officer when she attempted to close the door and return inside. She was then subjected to a battery of field sobriety tests and cited for OWI, her second offense. A subsequent blood draw revealed an alleged alcohol concentration of .20. This fact scenario left open the defense that CK had consumed alcohol when she arrived home but prior to being arrested for OWI. However, proving such a defense would be no easy feat given the claims of the witnesses and the very high blood alcohol level.  

Given the fact that the prosecutor was seeking some very stiff penalties, CK and Attorney Murray decided to take the case to a jury trial. Despite the very difficult facts, Attorney Murray was able to capitalize on various mistakes made by the prosecutor during the trial, including the failure to offer any video evidence and the failure to call a key witness. Throughout the trial, Attorney Murray methodically gathered the evidence to use in his closing argument to the jury. In the end, the jury found CK NOT GUILTY of all charges. It was the best possible outcome CK could have hoped for. And she just may be the happiest client we've ever had.

Case #2: Judge Finds Client Not Guilty in OWI-1st Case with .12 Blood Test Result

Attorney Matt Murray's client, KD, was struck by another vehicle while riding his motorcycle. He sustained very serious injuries and was taken to the hospital. An officer came to the hospital to investigate the crash and smelled alcohol coming from KD. When asked, KD admitted to having 6 drinks over a several hour period, which prompted the officer to seek a blood draw. The result ended up being .12. While it was ultimately established that the accident was not KD's fault, Attorney Murray was still stuck with having to explain the .12 blood test result. This is where hiring a firm like Melowski & Associates really pays off. Ask any attorney if there is a viable blood-alcohol curve defense with a .12 test result and the blood draw occurring nearly 3 hours after the time of driving and they will tell you that such a defense would be extremely difficult, if not impossible. And for the vast majority of attorneys, that's true. However, Attorney Murray knew just the right expert witness to call to raise such a defense.  Attorney Murray also shrewdly convinced the prosecutor not to call their own expert at trial. And perhaps most importantly, Attorney Murray waived a jury and tried the case to the assigned judge (a rare move for our firm), knowing that this particular judge held our firm in high regard based on our experience with him in various other cases. In the end, the judge simply could not find that there was sufficient evidence of KD's guilt and he was found NOT GUILTY. KD was so happy that he couldn't help but give Attorney Murray a huge hug in the hallway after the judge announced his verdict. A fantastic outcome that was the byproduct of superior lawyering every step of the way.