Monday, December 22, 2014

December 11, 2014: Another Fantastic Outcome in an OWI-Homicide Case; Repeat Offense Client Avoids Both a Homicide Conviction AND a Prison Sentence**

As noted in other entries on the Real Results Tracker, in the realm of drunk driving defense, there is no more serious charge than an OWI-Homicide. With potential penalties of 25 years imprisonment, 5-year license revocation and a $100,000.00 fine, the stakes literally can't get any higher...unless you have a prior OWI offense on your record. This simple fact increases the potential prison sentence from 25 years up to 40 years. This grave situation is what our client, BB, found himself in. On top of that, BB was accused of fleeing the scene of the accident and was charged with Hit and Run-Homicide, a serious felony that carries a separate 25-year sentence and $100,000.00 fine. All told, BB was facing a VERY long prison sentence if convicted as charged. At only 26, and with a very promising future as a journeyman electrician, this was an outcome BB simply couldn't fathom. BB turned to his parents for help. After an exhaustive search of Wisconsin's top attorneys, BB and his family turned to Dennis Melowski to save BB's life.

When Dennis first got involved in the case, the primary goal was to keep BB out of prison. Given the initial allegations, this was going to be a very difficult task. Even for first-time offenders, a conviction for OWI-Homicide results in a prison sentence in the vast majority of cases. And in cases where a Hit and Run is also alleged, long prison sentences are a virtual certainty. Dennis was going to have to find a way to convince the prosecutor to lessen the Homicide charges if BB was to have any hope of avoiding prison. But how? The facts of the case as alleged by the police and prosecutor painted a very bleak picture. Dennis needed to find something that supported BB's version of events. After an exhaustive investigation, some favorable facts and witnesses came to light that gave Dennis the bargaining chips he was so desperately seeking. As motions were filed and hearings were held, Dennis began negotiations with the district attorney. Gradually, he began chipping away at the district attorney's perception of the case. BB was no longer being viewed as the cold, heartless villain the police originally believed they were dealing with, but as a victim of circumstances in which many people had a role in the death that occurred. After more than a year of litigation and negotiation, Dennis worked out a fantastic deal. The original charge of OWI-Homicide was reduced to First Degree Reckless Endangerment and the Hit and Run Homicide was reduced to Hit and Run (non-death related). BB completely avoided any type of homicide conviction. More importantly, he was completely spared of a prison sentence. After hearing Dennis' "meticulous" (the local newspaper's word) recitation of the results of his investigation, the judge sentenced BB to just 12 months in the county jail, all with work-release privileges that allowed BB to keep his job and his very bright future. A truly remarkable outcome in a very high-stakes case. Media accounts of the case and its outcome can be read here:

**This is the fifth client in a row facing an OWI-Homicide for whom Dennis Melowski achieved a non-prison sentence. This is an unparalleled streak in these cases. If you are facing a charge as serious as OWI-Homicide, please ask other attorneys with whom you are speaking their results in such cases. Make them be specific. You will quickly see that when we say we are Wisconsin's most successful drunk driving defense firm, it isn't a sales pitch. It's a fact.