The most important and influential PA DUI Law cases.
1. Comm. v. Marconi, 2010 Pa. Super. 83 (Pa. Super. 2010) - Sheriffs lack authority to conduct and operate DUI roadblocks without assistance of police officers.
2. Comm. v. Duda,923 A.2d 1138 (Pa. 2007) -
a. That aperson's Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) may be below the percentage range at the time of driving is of no consequence, because the criminal act identified in the statute is the drinking of a sufficient quantity of alcohol to cause the elevated BAC reading within the two-hour window.
b.Under the rational basis test, the statute's two-hour rule is not overbroad as being beyond the state's police power or by criminalizing constitutionally protect activity, because the state has a legitimate interest in curbing alcohol- or drug-related accidents, and driving after drinking or after using illegal or controlled substances is not a constitutionally protected activity.
3. Comm. v. Etchison, 916 A.2d 1169 (Pa. Super. 2007) -
a. Under the rational basis test, the statute's two-hour rule is not overbroad as being beyond the state's police power or by criminalizing constitutionally protect activity, because the state has a legitimate interest in curbing alcohol- or drug-related accidents, and driving after drinking or after using illegal or controlled substances is not a constitutionally protected activity.
b. Because neither a suspect class nor a fundamental right is involved in an equal protection challenge to the DUI laws, the proper inquiry is whether a rational basis exists for the legislative classification and whether that classification has a fair and substantial relationship to the object of the legislation. Section 3802(d)(1) does not violate equal protection because it treats all drivers similarly.
4. Comm. v. Thur, 906 A.2d 552 (Pa. Super. 2006) - It is constitutionally permissible to require a driver to predict his Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) at some reasonable future time after drinking; furthermore, the legislature's attempt to more affectively deter drunk driving by extending the time period in which elevated BAC is outlawed is rational and does not offend due process.
5. Alexander v. Department of Transportation, Bureau of Driver Licensing, 583 Pa. 592 (2005) - Prior convictions of DUI within the last ten years that occurred before the enactment of the interlock law are still considered prior offenses for sentencing purposes.
6. Comm. v. Scavello, 557 PA. 429 (1999) - A motorist may avoid a checkpoint if he can do so lawfully, and the lawful avoidance of a checkpoint is not grounds for a vehicle stop.
7. Comm. v. Downs, 739 A.2d 569 (Pa. Super. 1999) - You may be charged with Driving on a Suspend license for a DUI-related offense even if you have completed service of the DUI suspension, but have not had your operating privilege restored by the state department of transportation. This also applies if you drive while under suspension for a non-DUI offense if the DUI-related suspension has not yet begun.
8. Comm. v. Sebek, 716 A.2d 1266 (Pa. Super. 266 (Pa. Super. 1998) - Police may make a lawful stop for equipment violations or for an expired registration tag and then charge you with a DUI.
9. Comm. v. Yashinski, 723 A.2d 1041 (Pa. Super. 1998) - A checkpoint that does not substantially comply with the Tarbert Guidelines will be deemed unlawful, and any evidence of DUI derived from the unlawful Checkpoint will be suppressed.
10. Comm. v. Colon, 708 A.2d 1279 (Pa. Super. 1998) - An insurance company is considered the victim eligible for restitution for monies paid to the insured for damage caused by a DUI.
11. Comm. v. Pacek, 456 Pa. Super. 578 (1997) - Although you may not be forced to drive through a Checkpoint or Roadblock, the police do not have to provide you with the opportunity to avoid either.
12. Comm. v. Nagle, 451 Pa. Super. 16 (1996) - A mere report of suspicious driving activity, without more, is insufficient to support an investigatory stop.
13. Comm. v. Henderson, 444 Pa. Super. 170 (1995) - A stop made merely because an occupant was not wearing a seat belt may not lead to DUI charges.
14. Comm. v. Zimmick, 539 Pa. 548 (1995) - The Commonwealth must prove that you received actual notice of your license suspension. However, you may not prove lack of notice if the notice was sent to a prior address of record and you failed to notify the department of you new address.
15.Comm. v. Grimes, 436 Pa. Super. 535 (1994) - A general on-the-scene investigation consisting of questions intended to determine whether or not a crime has been committed is not custodial in nature.
16. Comm. v. Toanone, 381 Pa. Super. 336 (1989) - Although the failure of field sobriety tests is not a prerequisite for probable cause, a motorist's failure of such tests may enhance a probable cause determination.
17. Comm. v. O'Connell, 521 Pa. 242 (1989) - Because a suspension for refusing to undertake a drug test is deemed a civil sanction and not a criminal sanction, police are required to advise you that you have no rights to speak to a lawyer before taking the chemical test. This is known at the O'Connell warning.
18. Comm. v. Douglass, 372 Pa. Super. 227 (1988) - The more serious the DUI offense, such as a DUI with vehicular homicide, the more leeway the courts are willing to give police officers in the amount of time they may stop you for a DUI before the stop is the functional equivalent of an arrest, which must be supported by probable cause.
19. Comm v. Tarbert, 517 Pa. 277 (1987) - created the Tabert Guidelines governing DUI Checkpoints and Roadblocks.
20. Comm. v. Anderl, 329 Pa. Super. 69 (1984) - When an officer stops your vehicle and requests to see your driver's license and proof of registration, this is not a reasonable basis to believe that you are subject to police custody. This is part of the basic police investigation.
At Morrow & Artim, we offer a no cost, no obligation review of your DUI or criminal law matter via a short telephone consult or an email reply. If both you and our firm agree that legal representation is required, an in-office appointment will be scheduled.Call Morrow & Artim today at 412-823-8003 to obtain the legal help that you deserve.