Hamilton County Municipal Court, Case No. 07/TRC/35268

City of Cincinnati OVI/DUI

Client was charged by City of Cincinnati Police with 4511.19(A)(1)(a), Operating a Motor Vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drug of abuse (OVI/DUI), notwithstanding the fact that the Client blew under the legal limit at .077(BAC). After being stopped at a sobriety check point the arresting officer stated the client admitted to drinking, that he noticed an odor of alcohol and bloodshot watery eyes. The officer had the Client perform three standardized field sobriety tests, the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGN) test, which the officer noted 4 out of 6 clues, the One Leg Stand which the officer noted 1 out of 4 clues, and the Walk and Turn Test, which the officer noted 1 out of 8 clues, and still arrested the Client. Counsel filed a Motion to Suppress, challenging the admissibility of the Standardized Field Sobriety Tests as they were not done in compliance with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) student manual, and challenging the lack of probable cause to arrest the Client. After a hearing on the Motion to Suppress, the Court suppressed the results of all three standardized field sobriety tests finding they were not administered in the prescribed manner, and found the officer lacked probable cause to arrest the Client.   The City of Cincinnati appealed the case to the First District Court of Appeals, and the Court of Appeals upheld the decision of the trial court, and the case was dismissed.