November 14, 2014
by The Schwartz Law Group
Earlier last month in Antwerp Township, a man was arrested and charged with driving under the influence after police found him towing a trailer with a John Deere ride-on mower on CR 657. According to a news report by one local source, the man was heading north on CR 657 near 60th Avenue around 9 p.m. He had attached flashlights to the front of his mower to act as headlights.
Evidently, as the police approached the 36-year-old man on the mower, another car started to come up from behind him. Police were able to shine their lights on the mower to illuminate it, allowing the other driver to see it in time to avoid a collision.
The man was arrested and charged with driving under the influence, the third such charge on his record. The lawnmower was taken by police and is being held pending the result of the charges.
To be sure, this is not the normal drunk driving case. Rarely are people caught driving a ride-on lawnmower on the highway. However, this case does illustrate the breadth of the drunk driving laws in Michigan.
For example, a person operating any motorized vehicle on a highway can be found guilty of driving under the influence. So the fact that the vehicle in this case was only a lawnmower, rather than a regular passenger vehicle, does not limit the man’s exposure under drunk-driving laws.
Similarly, a person can be convicted of “driving” under the influence even though the person is not actually driving the vehicle. In some cases, people have been found guilty of drunk driving when they have been passed out in the car with the keys in the ignition, even though the car was off. The fact that the car was capable of being driven just by turning the keys was enough to allow a conviction for driving under the influence.
In Michigan, there are two main defenses to drunk driving. First, that the operator was not actually in operation of the car. And second, that the driver was not intoxicated. Be that as it may, it is incredibly important that anyone arrested and charged with driving under the influence should contact an experienced Michigan DUI attorney immediately to discuss his or her case.
If you have recently been arrested and charged for a DUI offense in Michigan, you should speak with a dedicated Michigan criminal defense attorney to discuss your case. Even when it seems like there is little that can be done to secure your acquittal, there is almost always something that can be done to lessen the affect that the potential will have on your future. To learn more about how to effectively defend against drunk driving charges, call (240) 930-5019 today to set up a free initial consultation with a dedicated criminal defense attorney.