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Need Help for Arrest?

Posted on February 15, 2017 in General Criminal Law Issues - Northern KY

HELP, I GOT ARRESTED.  These are often the first words out of the mouth of a person facing their first criminal charge.  WHAT DO I DO NOW?  This may be for a DUI, drunk and disorderly, intoxication, or other charges that are probably out of character for the defendant.  This can be a benefit to the defense and help with negotiating a favorable resolution.

If you made a mistake, do not compound it by making a second mistake of trying to handle it yourself.  Most cases will get a much better resolution with the aid of an attorney.  An attorney can walk you through the steps and tell you what to expect.  The attorney also has direct access to the prosecutor and can discuss your case in private and often outside of the courtroom.  Most often, prosecutors will not do this with unrepresented defendants.

The attorney also knows what should be expected from your case based on similar and past experiences.  For example, if this is your first misdemeanor and it is non-violent and fits certain parameters, the attorney may be able to get you into a diversion program.  A diversion program generally allows the defendant to have the case ultimately dismissed and expunged from their criminal record.  There may also be other programs or options available for resolution.

Diversion programs vary by state and the program differs significantly whether the charges are a misdemeanor or a felony.  Your attorney can discuss what will be expected as well as the costs and time considerations for the program.

If you have been charged, hire a lawyer who is experienced in criminal defense and/or DUI defense.  For more information on your charge, visit by website @ link.  For consultation or representation in Northern Kentucky, call Bouldin Law Firm and schedule an appointment with Michael Bouldin.  Call 859-581-6453 or email mike@bouldinlawfirm.com.

What is DUI Aggravator?

Posted on January 24, 2017 in DUI General Criminal Law Issues - Northern KY

Kentucky DUI law, as stated in KRS 189A.010, outlines certain criteria (referred to as aggravators) that increase the mandatory penalties for a DUI conviction.

Those criteria are identified as aggravators.  The follow are those criteria or “aggravating circumstances” that increase the jail sentence if convicted:

  1. Refusal of request for testing breath, blood or urine;
  2. Having a blood alcohol level over .15;
  3. Having an accident with death or serious physical injury;
  4. Going the wrong way on a limited access highway;
  5. Driving over 30 miles per hour above the speed limit; or
  6. Having a child under the age of 12 in the vehicle.

There are six (6) criteria that mandate the increased penalties.  (see KRS 189A.010(11))  Those penalties only affect the jail sentence associated with the DUI.  For a first offense, the minimum jail sentence is 0 days but with an aggravator, there is a minimum 4 day sentence. Second offense within 10 years carries a minimum jail sentence of 7 days and 14 if aggravated.  Third offense within 10 years has minimum 30 days incarceration and that doubles to 60 days if an aggravating circumstance exists. Fourth offense within 10 years is a felony, but 120 days in jail is the minimum which doubles if aggravated.

If you have been charged with a DUI, you should hire an experienced criminal defense attorney.  For consultation in Boone, Campbell or Kenton county, call the Bouldin Law Firm at 859-581-6456.  Contact Mike Bouldin at 581-MIKE or email at mwbouldin2@gmail.com.

Lawyer for DUI Trial

Posted on January 24, 2017 in DUI

If you are looking for a lawyer with DUI trial experience in Northern Kentucky, there are a few good men to report.

Having been a trial attorney for over 20 years in Northern Kentucky, I often have the opportunity to see others at work.  Kentukcy law prohibits the term “best attorney” so here is my list of top attorneys in the area. Northern Kentucky counties of Boone, Campbell and Kenton are fortunate to have a number of experienced and very good attorneys who practice DUI defense.

For my dollar the top DUI attorneys include those retired: W. Robert Lotz, Dick Slukich, and Burr Travis; the elder statesmen Wil Zevely, Harry Hellings, Ed Drennen and Jon Alig; my contemporaries include Tim Schneider, Chris Jackson and Paul Dickman; and the younger group includes Ryan Beck. There are also a few Cincinnati attorneys that occasionally cross the river from Cincinnati and do a decent job, including: Steve Adams, Joe Suhre and Kelly Farrish (*Kelly’s not licensed in Kentucky).

A good attorney can advise when you should plead, when you should file a motion, when you should proceed to trial and whether that trial should be with a judge or a jury.

If you have questions and are looking for a DUI defense attorney with significant trial experience, call the Bouldin Law Firm and discuss your case with Michael Bouldin.  For consultation, email at mike@bouldinlawfirm.com or call 859-581-6453.

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DUI Last Night? Court tomorrow?

Posted on January 1, 2017 in DUI

If you got arrested for DUI last night or early this morning, you probably have court tomorrow (or Tuesday) If you want to talk to an attorney before then, email me at mwbouldin2@gmail.com. Bouldin Law Firm of Mike Bouldin and Kris Nevels can help!

Serving Northern Kentucky primarily in Boone, Campbell and Kenton counties.

Don’t start 2017 in court without an attorney. Email now. mwbouldin2@gmail.com.

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Give Legal Services – Best Gift Ever!

Posted on November 24, 2016 in DUI General Criminal Law Issues - Northern KY

What’s the best gift you could give a loved one or adult child?  How about defense off their pending DUI, assault or other criminal case?

Many people have trouble paying legal fees associated with DUI our expungement. This is especially true with contested cases or people on a fixed budget. You can help!

Hire an attorney to guide them and file for the process. If they have an attorney, contribute to their fees. A phone call from a relative with even a small payment reminds the attorney of three case and that there see others who care about the outcome.

In northern Kentucky call or email Michael Bouldin. Call 581-MIKE and schedule an appointment for yourself or a loved one.  For immediate response, email Mike at Mwbouldin2@gmail.com.

 

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Help, I Don’t Want To Plead Guilty!

Posted on November 14, 2016 in General Criminal Law Issues - Northern KY

As a trial attorney for over 20 years I receive at least a few calls each year from defendants who have been charged and their attorney is recommending that they plead guilty.  Often these defendants even say, “My attorney wants me to plead guilty” or “My attorney is making me plead guilty.”  The worst is, “My attorney made me plea.”

First, no attorney can MAKE a defendant plead guilty to anything.  The job of the attorney is to take any potential negotiated deal to the client and the client makes the choice of whether to accept or reject the plea offer.  When you stand in front of the judge and he asks your plea, in nearly every case the defendant is required to answer. At that one juncture, your attorney can seldom speak on your behalf.

If you are unhappy with the advice of your attorney, you are free to change attorneys.  You have the right to an attorney and to hire an attorney of your choosing.  If you cannot afford an attorney, the state is required to appoint you an attorney, referred to as a public advocate or public defender.  If you request a public defender, you do not get to pick that attorney.  However, you can fire that attorney and hire an attorney of your own.  If your hired or appointed counsel is pushing a plea or does not want to take the case to trial, ask him/her why.  

Different attorneys charge varying rates for criminal defense, and DUI/OVI is no different.  Most criminal defense attorneys charge an initial retainer and may have additional fee if the case proceeds to trial.  If your case is already set for trial, the new attorney may ask for a continuance.  The granting of the continuance is in the discretion of the court.  Many attorneys will not jump into a case without a more substantial retainer if the case is already set for trial.  An experienced and local attorney will know which judge(s) may allow for a continuance and which will mandate that the case proceeds to trial on the selected date.

If you do not want to plead guilty, DON’T.  You have the right to a trial and the right to have a jury hear the evidence.  If your case is defensible, pick an attorney that can present that defense and has a history of trying cases to a jury.  For a consultation in Northern Kentucky, call Michael Bouldin at 859-581-6453 or email at mwbouldin2@gmail.com.  Call Mike at 581-MIKE.

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Who Takes DUI Case to Jury?

Posted on October 5, 2016 in DUI

I do.  As an attorney practicing DUI and criminal defense in Northern Kentucky for over 21 years, I have experience to handle your DUI defense.  This may include taking the case to a trial, whether a trial to the Judge or a trial to a jury.  Often times people are fearful of juries.  While a jury does have the ability to make recommendations tot he Judge regarding sentence, my finding is that juries tend to sentence about the same as most courts.

A DUI conviction stays on your record for ten (that’s right, 10) years.  If you have a defense, you should consider exercising all of your rights before you plead guilty.

If a case is a close call – say you fail 4 of 6 field tests but there is no bad driving. The jury may acquit or may convict.  A lot depends on how well the officer testifies and how well the defense attorney cross examines that testimony.  Whether there is a video is also a factor.  If there is no video, an attorney  may point out why the officer fails to videotape the encounter.  If there is, that video will provide the best evidence regardless of the testimony of the officer.

Any attorney who regularly tries cases has wins and losses.  It is an unfair question to ask, and often very unrealistic, to believe that there are attorneys who do not lose.  That is TV.  Real attorneys take cases to trial, some of which are difficult if not impossible to win.  Even hopeless cases have a chance of acquittal.  Many attorneys claim a “win” as anything as good or better than the offer by the prosecution.  That would allow for a DUI conviction where the person is charged with DUI, so long as the sentence is not worse with a trial than a plea.

For example, I was recently involved with a DUI jury trial wherein my client blew over .10, which is obviously over the .08 legal limit.  According to the testimony of the officer, the client also failed all 6 of the 6 field sobriety tests.  It was still a triable case as the video did now show that the field tests were as bad as the officer testified.  While unfortunately the jury did convict, they suggested the minimum sentence of $200 fine and no (0) jail time.  My client had his day in court and, moreover, was none the worse for taking the case to a jury trial.

If you want to discuss a DUI charge and possibility of taking the case to a bench or jury trial, contact an attorney who regularly handles these types of cases.  In Northern Kentucky, call Michael Bouldin at 859-581-6453 or email at mike@bouldinlawfirm.com.  Call 581-MIKE today.

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Independence Day DUI?

Posted on July 4, 2016 in DUI General Criminal Law Issues - Northern KY

If you were charged with DUI over the holiday July 4th weekend in Cincinnati or Northern Kentucky, you are not alone.  DON’T plead guilty.  If you plead NOT-GUILTY, the court will set your case for a pretrial conference within the next month.  HIRE AN ATTORNEY who regularly practices criminal law in your county.

There are many ways to defend a DUI charge.  First, the attorney will get your side of the story, which often differs substantially from that of the arresting officer.  A request for production of evidence, also know as discovery, is essential to begin the defense.  Often, a video from the cruiser or from the officer’s vest camera may be available.  A video is the best evidence, obviously better than the recollection of the defendant or the officer.  It is also a useful tool to use in cross examination of the officer.

Suppression of evidence may also be necessary to win a case.  If the stop can be suppressed, the entirety of the field sobriety tests and the breathalyzer are also suppressed.  If the stop was valid (officer had probably cause), it does not necessarily give right to request field sobriety tests.  If field sobriety tests are passed, the officer should not demand a breathalyzer or blood test to check for blood alcohol levels.

Even if everything was valid and the defendant was driving while impaired, an attorney can often negotiate a better resolution than a simply plea to the charges.  Consult with an attorney prior to entering any plea and, if possible, before appearing in court.

 For representation in Kentucky, especially in Boone, Campbell, Kenton or Hamilton counties, call Michael Bouldin at 859-581-6453.  For immediate response, email to mwbouldin2@gmail.com.

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DUI with Marijuana in KY

Posted on June 8, 2016 in DUI General Criminal Law Issues - Northern KY

Kentucky does not have a per se limit for marijuana.  Since marijuana is illegal in Kentucky, some prosecutors (and a few judges) believe that you are impaired with ANY marijuana in your system.  Other prosecutors (and most judges/juries) believe that the amount is irrelevant without an expert to help translate an amount to impairment.  In either case, the prosecution in Kentucky must prove that the driver is “impaired in their ability to operate the motor vehicle” as a result of the drugs and/or alcohol combination.

Some states such as Ohio have a per se limit with marijuana in your blood system which is similar to that of alcohol.  For example, if you have over 2 nanograms/milliliter of marijuana in your blood stream, then you can be convicted of operating while impaired (OVI=DUI in Ohio).

The Ohio threshold for drugged driving is illustrated in the following table. Ohio’s DUI Per Se Levels pursuant to ORC§ 4511.19(A)(1)(vii) and § 4511.19(A)(1)(viii)(I)-(II).

Prohibited Substance Urine Blood
Marijuana 10 ng/ml 2 ng/ml
Marijuana metabolite 35 ng/ml 50 ng/ml
Marijuana metabolite in combination with alcohol or other drugs 15 ng/ml 5 ng/ml

Affirmative Defense

It is a valid defense if a person obtained the controlled substance pursuant to a prescription issued by a licensed health professional authorized to prescribe drugs, and the person injected, ingested, or inhaled the controlled substance in accordance with the health professional’s directions. Id. § 4511.19(K)(1)-(2).

NOTE: A doctor’s recommendation to use cannabis is NOT a prescription.

My experience shows that any smoking within the last 24 hours will likely put the person over the Ohio limit, regardless of actual impairment.  As such, best legal advise would be to refuse a request for blood or urine test if you have ingested marijuana within 24 hours.  In Kentucky, the decision is more difficult.  If you know you have marijuana in your system, a breath test will not show the substance.  A blood test, however, will show marijuana in your system.

The problem is what works best.  If you have also been drinking and smoking, best legal advice is generally to refuse a blood test.  If you HAVE NOT ADMITTED TO RECENT SMOKING, generally it is advisable to submit to the test.  In either case, if you test positive or if you refuse, you should expect that the prosecutor will not amend the charges.  You should plan to take your case to trial, whether before a judge or jury.  

As such, you should hire an experienced DUI/criminal defense attorney who has trial experience with both judges and juries.  There are certain judges you should avoid and others who may be preferable to a jury.  For representation in Kenton, Campbell, Boone or Hamilton counties, call Michael Bouldin at 859-581-6453 or email at mwbouldin2@gmail.com.

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Memorial Day DUI

Posted on May 27, 2016 in DUI General Criminal Law Issues - Northern KY

This Memorial Day will be especially busy for police throughout the city, county and state.  1) Memorial Day is the first major summer holiday.  2) Memorial Day happens to fall on the last weekend of the month.

Kentucky State Police are positioned to write a record number of citations this weekend.  Whether because of the holiday, last day of the month or a major bonus, the KSP is out in record numbers.  Just today I personally witnessed 7 KSP patrol vehicles on the stretch of I-71 between Louisville and Cincinnati.  Police were shooting radar and looking for suspicious vehicles.

Kentucky DUI law now allows look back 10 years for prior offenses.  If you have had a DUI in the last 10 years, you would be subject to the penalties of 2nd offense DUI.  Note: this recently changed as it was formerly a 5 year look back.  DUI penalties for first (1st) offense range from 30-120 day license suspension, $200-500 fine, DUI service fee, court costs, and 2-30 days of incarceration.  These fines and cost total over $720 to the court, in addition to about $350 in assessment and classes; not to mention insurance rate increases.

Incarceration of 4 days is mandatory in cases where an aggravating circumstance exists on 1st offense and doubles the jail minimum on subsequent offense. Aggravating circumstances include: wrong way on highway, speeding over 30 mph over posted limit, accident with serious injuries, having child under 12 in the vehicle, breath/blood alcohol over .15 or refusal of breath/blood test.

Also remember, second offense penalties include minimum license suspension of 12 months and jail of 7 days.  The new law does allow for ignition interlock.  This process can be daunting and expensive. Use an attorney who has handled both pretrial and post-conviction ignition interlock for clients in order to answer questions and help guide you through the process.

If you are arrested for DUI, contact an attorney.  For representation in Northern Kentucky, call Michael Bouldin at 581-MIKE or contact the office at mwbouldin2@gmail.com or call 859-581-6453.

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