Unfortunately, it appears that having an unconventional schedule may make a driver more susceptible to being charged with violating DWI laws—even when he or she has not been drinking at all. Such was the case last winter for a retired firefighter coming home from a late night workout at his gym. WXYZ.com reports on the case of 64-year-old Arizona resident Jessie Thorton, who sleeps during the day and works out and runs errands at night to coincide with his wife’s schedule as an ER nurse.
On the evening of December 7, around 11 o’clock, Mr. Thorton was stopped by law enforcement officers, who allegedly observed him crossing out of the white line in his lane. When officers approached Mr. Thorton, they allegedly immediately notified him that they believed that he had been driving under the influence because his eyes were red and bloodshot. Mr. Thorton informed the officers that he had been swimming at the gym. At that point, it appears that the officers began to get somewhat rough with Mr. Thorton.
Police officers informed Mr. Thorton that he needed to perform a field sobriety test, and Mr. Thorton advised them that he would do so, but that he was scheduled for hip replacement surgery and had bad knees. While taking the field sobriety tests, Mr. Thorton alleges that officers shined a flashlight into his eyes, and were asking each other if they were performing the test correctly. Ultimately, Mr. Thorton was arrested and charged with misdemeanor DWI. Mr. Thorton was subjected to wearing handcuffs and was made to sit on the curb, despite his hip and knee injuries. He was then placed into the back of an SUV, in an uncomfortable position. When Mr. Thorton asked an officer to move her seat up, she told him to stop whining.
When Mr. Thorton arrived at police headquarters, he was administered a blood test, which determined that he had a 0.000% blood alcohol level. A Drug Recognition Expert also examined Mr. Thorton, and determined that in his opinion, he was not under the influence of any drugs or alcohol.
Due to the conclusive evidence that Mr. Thorton had not, in fact, been under the influence of any drugs, the DWI charges against him were dropped two months later. However, Business Insider reports that Mr. Thorton has now filed a $500,000 claim against the city. Mr. Thorton’s allegations against the city include racial profiling and harassment by the police, in connection with the stop. Even though Mr. Thorton’s DWI charges were dropped, he still had to spend over $5,000 in relation to the charges, and notes that he does not want this to ever happen to anyone else. Mr. Thorton’s case against the city is still pending.
Mr. Thorton’s case illustrates that DWI charges can happen to anyone, anytime and in any place. If you have been charged with violating DWI laws, you should immediately seek out the assistance of an experienced attorney. An experienced DWI attorney can help you defend your case, and is your best defense against jail time, heavy fines and license revocation. Call the experienced New York DWI attorneys at Nave DWI Defense Attorneys today at 877-418-0075 for a confidential consultation for New York DWI charges.
The exclusive purpose of this article is educational and it is not intended as either legal advice or a general solution to any specific legal problem. Corporate offices for Nave DWI Defense Attorneys are located at 432 N. Franklin Street, Suite 80, Syracuse, NY 13204; Telephone No.: 1-866-792-7800. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Attorney Advertising.