What is "The Local Rule" Regarding Parenting Plans in Clark County Washington?
As a Divorce Lawyer, I know divorces can be one of the most emotionally draining events in a person’s life. The court ultimately has the authority to make decisions that can affect everyone involved for the rest of their lives potentially. And of all the things the court can decide in a divorce, one of the most important and contentious is a Parenting Plan, i.e. the document that evidences the court’s decision regarding the allocation of parenting time between the parties. While every case is unique, litigants still must bear in mind what is known as the Local Rule” in regard to parenting time.
The State of Washington continues to harshen consequences for drinking drivers in the state by changing the law and now making a fourth driving under the influence offense a felony in Washington state if it has occurred within the last 10 years. Prior to the change, Washington law required four misdemeanor DUI convictions over a 10-year period before the fifth offense was felony eligible. If convicted of Felony DUI, the offender would be facing a prison sentence range, even for a first offense. SB 5037-2017-18
Part 3 of 3 Regarding the Anatomy of a DUI Arrest
Field Sobriety Tests (FSTs)
This final phase before arrest, the officer typically will order the suspect out of his vehicle and offer him or her the opportunity to take “voluntary” field sobriety tests (FSTs). Now the law regarding the taking of field sobriety tests was muddled relatively recently by a June 2016 Washington State Supreme Court case that was later amended by the Washington Supreme Court in September 2016. Specifically, in State v. Mecham, 186 Wn.2d 128, 380 P.3d 414, 2016 Wash. LEXIS 695 (Wash. June 16, 2016) (the date of the original opinion) (the opinion was ordered amended in parts at State v. Mecham, 2016 Wash. LEXIS 1011 (Wash. Sept. 6, 2016))
Part 2 of 3 Regarding the Anatomy of a DUI Arrest
In the personal contact phase, law enforcement officers are making as many observations about the person as possible: Do they detect the odor of alcohol, marijuana or some other form of intoxicant on the person? Now remember, if someone is 21 years old it is not unlawful or illegal to drive after drinking, so having alcohol on your breath is not unlawful. What is unlawful is to be affected to an appreciable degree by use of alcohol, drugs or a combination of both in Washington. So evidence of use of those things (alcohol, marijuana, other intoxicants) in and of itself is not cause for DUI, but it is a link in the chain necessary to form probable cause for DUI. An experienced DUI Lawyer can help you navigate this scenario.
Part 1 of 3 Regarding the Anatomy of a DUI Arrest
Law enforcement officers are taught that the DUI arrest process is broken down into three main sections generally: 1. Vehicle in motion, 2. Personal contact with the suspect, and 3. Pre-arrest screening. Officers typically have to justify each step to move on to the next in order to ultimately justify a DUI arrest. However, there are circumstances when an officer does not need to actually observe the vehicle in motion and can still ultimately make a DUI arrest. The most common scenarios occur when a police officer interviews someone who admits to driving a vehicle, while not actually witnessing the suspect driving the vehicle and/or other people witnessed the driver driving the vehicle, etc. Now, let’s talk about each of these phases in turn, beginning with the “vehicle in motion” phase.
How to Keep Driving when Washington State Suspends Your Drivers License for DUI or Drug Related Offenses.
Today’s world revolves around people being able to drive—it is a mainstay to keep employment and otherwise live your life. Unfortunately, sometimes people make mistakes that result in a person’s ability to legally drive to be suspended. Fortunately, in Washington State the legislature has recognized this fact of life and has created a means to protect society and the individual who made the mistake!
She set mobile home ablaze after boyfriend broke up with her
By Jessica Prokop, Columbian Courts Reporter
Published: May 26, 2017, 8:00 PM
A La Center woman who set multiple fires inside the mobile home she was renting, following a breakup with her then-boyfriend, was sentenced Friday to nine months in jail.
Cindy Jo Clem, 50, previously pleaded guilty in Clark County Superior Court to second-degree domestic violence arson and entered an “in re Barr” plea to third-degree assault, which allows a defendant to plead guilty to a lesser related charge she didn’t commit in order to avoid conviction for a greater offense...
Her attorney, Nick Wood, said Friday that Clem had a tumultuous upbringing and suffers from mental health issues. She had on more than one occasion tried to end her life, he said, and was self-medicating with alcohol.
“This was someone in crisis. This was someone so in crisis that she wanted to end her own life,” Wood told the judge...
Read the full story...
As a DUI Lawyer in Vancouver, I would like to share some proposed changes in Washington State criminal law. Recently, Washington legislatures have passed several new criminal justice oriented pieces of legislation geared toward toughening up criminal laws in the state.
Currently Washington law makes a fifth conviction for Driving Under the Influence (DUI) in ten years a felony offense with significant prison time attached to it. However, SB 5037 would reduce the number of from five to four in a 10-year period.
As a criminal defense attorney who has handled numerous felony cases in Vancouver, WA, I've worked with many cases involving juvenile offenders being tried as adults in Superior Court. Recently, the Washington State Supreme Court in the case of State v. Zyion Houston-Sconiers gave a big boost to juvenile justice in Washington State by rulings that youths should not be automatically treated like adults in criminal courts because “children are different” and criminal sentences must take their age into account.
Habitual Offender Driver’s License Status in Washington -- What to Know and How to Deal with it.
As an experienced traffic lawyer in Vancouver, WA, I know it is very easy to make mistakes while driving. However, if you make too many mistakes over the course of a five-year period you can be found to be a “Habitual Traffic Offender’ and have your license taken away by the Washington Department of Licensing (DOL).
Nicholas "Nick" Wood - Law Office of Nicholas Wood, P.S.
Nick Wood received his J.D. in 1999 from Lewis and Clark's Northwestern School of Law in Portland, Oregon. The Law Office of Nicholas Wood, P.S. has represented clients for various criminal defense matters since 2006.