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Jeremy Bentham: Philosopher of the Law

Jeremy Bentham (1748-1832), English utilitarian philosopher and social reformer. He first attained attention as a critic of the leading legal theorist in eighteenth century England, Sir William Blackstone. Bentham's campaign for social and political reforms in all areas, most notably the criminal law, had its theoretical basis in his utilitarianism, expounded in his Introduction to the Principles of Morals and Legislation, a work written in 1780 but not published until 1789. In it he formulated the principle of utility, which approves of an action in so far as an action has an overall tendency to promote the greatest amount of happiness....

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Challenging the Breath Test (Part III)

[caption id="attachment_1225" align="alignright" width="145" caption="BAC DataMaster"][/caption]I once attended a seminar where an attorney argued that there were many things which "mirrored" ethyl alcohol, thereby interfering with the ability of the breath testing machine to distinguish between "real" alcohol (ethyl) and "false" alcohol (acetone). The interfering substance, acetone, is a natrually occuring by-product of the human body and is common in diabetics, dieters and persons coming into contact with household paints.  What's more there was some pretty solid science presented to support this argument. WOW!Well, after studying the BAC DataMaster I am sorry to say that this method is very limited as...

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Ohio’s DUI Look-back Law and “Equivalent Statutes”

The following article from www.talkleft.com is illustrative of how different states treat the .08 presumption of impairment.  This is important for Ohio attorneys facing a charge under 4511.19(A)(2), (Ohio's 20 year look-back).  The statute requires that the offenses be "equivalent."  There is a good argument that states such as Virginia (described below) are not equivalent given the presumptions. VA Judge Refuses to Presume Guilt in DUI CasesBy TChris, Section Court Decisions Posted on Thu Oct 27, 2005 at 10:26:50 AM ESTWhile the headline to the linked story labels Judge Ian O'Flaherty a “maverick,” it might be more accurate to call him “brave” for standing up...

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Aggravated Vehicular Homicide; State v. Hassler

Blood Alcohol Test Taken Outside Time Limit Held Admissible in DUI Vehicular Homicide 2006-1517. State v. Hassler, 2007-Ohio-4947. Delaware App. No. 05 CAA11 0078, 2006-Ohio-3397. Judgment reversed and cause remanded. Lundberg Stratton, O'Connor, Lanzinger, and Cupp, JJ., concur. Moyer, C.J., and Pfeifer and O'Donnell, JJ., dissent. Opinion: http://www.supremecourtofohio.gov/rod/newpdf/0/2007/2007-Ohio-4947.pdf(Sept. 27, 2007) Under limited circumstances, in the prosecution of a driver for aggravated vehicular homicide while “under the influence of alcohol,” Ohio courts may admit the results of a blood alcohol test taken outside the two-hour time limit for admissibility under the state's DUI statute, the Supreme Court of Ohio ruled today.The case involved the death of...

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Challenging the Breath Test (Part II)

Undetected, raw, unabsorbed alcohol in the mouth may falsely elevate the results of a breath test. This residual mouth alcohol (RMA) can come from items ingested just prior to the test, from regurgitated (burped) air from the stomach, or from gastroesophogeal reflux.  Ohio testing protocol attempts to guard against this testing flaw by requiring officers to observe the defendant for twenty minutes prior to the test.  They look for burping, vomiting or any ingestion of items into the mouth.  Lazy observation by the police officer can result in a contamination of the test.The BAC DataMaster, Ohio's most common breath testing...

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MADD favors higher beer taxes to fund its agenda

The following is from an article on a proposed rollback of the tax on beer.  As you can guess MADD is against it and wants higher beer taxes, more police and more prosecutions.  You can find the original/complete article here. But groups like Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) argue that lowering the tax will harm underage drinkers because beer will become more affordable to youths who are especially sensitive to prices. MADD points out that young people consume approximately 10% of all beer sold, with more than 1.1 billion cans of beer consumed annually by underage drinkers."A lower tax could lead to...

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Modern Drunkard Magazine: The Chicago Lager Riots of 1855

Chicago, circa 1850, was a rough-and-tumble city crouching by the chilly, windy waters of Lake Michigan, a final outpost on the edges of the great western frontier. An argument can be made as to which was more hazardous — the city or the frontier.The city’s population numbered some 80,000 souls, with newcomers arriving daily, most looking for work in the burgeoning stockyards or on the lake-front docks. The poor and working classes outnumbered the moneyed elite by almost five to one. Saloons, beer gardens, and taverns outnumbered other businesses two to one, and churches almost fifteen to one. The good...

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BAC DataMaster DMT

Below is a description of NPAS's latest version of the BAC DataMaster, the DataMaster DMT. This machine is able to print out the slope of the alcohol curve of the breath entering the machine.  In effect, this will demonstrate when a defendant tries to "trick" the machine by manipulating their breath.  It will also limit the defense of the test based on Residual Mouth Alcohol issues.  Don't get excited, however, they have not been purchased or used by any jurisdiction in Ohio...

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Eliminate DUI / OVI Sobriety Roadblocks

IntroductionThis unique site, dedicated to the subject (and elimination) of roadblocks on public streets, roads and highways, is sponsored by the National Motorists Association, North America's most outspoken defender of drivers' rights (www.motorists.org). Our position on roadblocks is not complicated.Our PositionWe oppose the use of roadblocks, period. The only justification for stopping citizens under a roadblock scenario is to warn them of an unseen peril that could cause injury or death to an unsuspecting motorist. So-called "sobriety check points," or seat belt checks, or the myriad of other excuses the government concocts to harass and intimidate its citizens through the use...

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