STATE v. C.D.
Maximum Sentence: 364 days jail, $2,000.00 fine, 90 day loss of license
Mandatory Minimum Sentence: $500 fine and 90 day loss of license
Synopsis: Client was the lead vehicle in a 2 car "caravan" travelling from Bangor to Dover-Foxcroft. Client's boyfriend (Car #2) was driving the car behind her and was extremely intoxicated. A US Border Patrol Agent observed Car #2 operating in an erratic fashion and called the local PD. Local law enforcement fell into line as vehicle #4 (vehicle #3 is the Border Patrol) and began to observe extreme operational impairment issues with car #2. Car #1 (client) and car #2 pull into a closed gas station. Client pulls up to the gas pumps to get gas and local PD initiates a stop on car #2.
During the OUI investigation of car #2 the US Border Patrol Agent assists the Dover-Foxcroft PD investigation and arrest of the driver of car #2. During that investigation, the US Border Patrol Agent unholstered his pistol and threatened to shoot the car #2's dog. The client observed this unusual and frightening episode and attempted to start her car in order to drive away. The Border Patrol Agent ordered her to shut her vehicle off and began a 2nd OUI investigation.
Result: As a result of this incident, we brought a motion to suppress all the evidence obtained from what we characterized as an illegal seizure. A testimonial hearing was held and both the police officers testified. The client was not present for the hearing. The judge ruled in the client's favor finding that the order to shut her car off was an illegal seizure, unsupported by reasonable suspicion of criminal activity. All evidence was suppressed and as a result, the OUI charge was dismissed.