A Pennsylvania mother is asking a judge — through her defense counsel — to throw out various pieces of contested evidence in the case that is being presented against her. She is facing DUI charges as well as child endangerment allegations after she allegedly attempted to drive with her son while under the influence. The alleged incident occurred last Halloween when she took her son out to trick-or-treat.
The evidence that is being called into question concerns several aspects of the case. The first of the contested evidence is whether the woman was properly informed of her rights when taken into custody. Her legal representative has stated that she was not informed of her right to maintain silence and wants any statements she may have given to be dismissed. Secondly, her representative is claiming that a prior incident is not admissible in this case, since the woman completed the requirements in order to have her record expunged.
Furthermore, even though her husband is alleged to have made the initial call to police, he is protected by law to not be compelled to offer testimony against his wife due to the doctrine of spousal privilege. He has apparently stated that he does not now wish to testify against her. Additionally, while Pennsylvania police claimed that the woman’s breath test indicated a .291 percent blood alcohol level, her representative has contended that the portable device used to obtain the reading is inadmissible as evidence.
Understandably, DUI charges along with child endangerment allegations are serious matters; however, the protection of the rights of those who stand accused of committing crimes are equally important and most be protected. The state is bound by law to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt which includes legally obtained evidence. If there is any question as to the legality or the manner in which evidence is collected and presented, then the accused is well within her rights to seek to have such items barred from consideration. This woman is invoking her right to a fair and just review of the case as provided for by the laws of her state.
Source: timesleader.com, “Shavertown mom wants evidence tossed in DUI trick-or-treat case”, Roger DuPuis, July 7, 2014