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DUI charge after fellow motorist reports alleged drunk driver

By Daniel T. Geherin

Most of our Ann Arbor readers probably know that one of the most common ways police officers detect drunk driving is by pulling drivers over for traffic violations. For instance, if a police officer sees a driver speeding or failing to signal a turn, they have every reason to pull that driver over in order to issue a traffic citation. However, during the traffic stop a police officer investigating a possible drunk driving charge may also be on the lookout for signs of intoxication, such as slurred speech or the smell of alcoholic beverages. But, what our readers may not know is that a traffic stop may be instigated by the report of another driver who calls 9-1-1 to inform the police of a possible drunk driver.

That appears to have been the cause for a traffic stop in nearby Saline. A late-night 9-1-1 phone call was received from a driver who reportedly stated that they were following another car being driven by a driver who had struck a curb numerous times while the vehicle was in operation. This led to a police officer being dispatched to investigate in the reported area, where the vehicle was eventually located.

After the vehicle pulled over for the traffic stop the police officer reportedly conducted field sobriety tests, although the initial reports did not indicate which tests were conducted. Regardless, the suspect apparently failed the tests and was arrested on a DUI charge.

It is always good when members of society are looking out for the greater good, but there could be some legal issues in this type of case, which involves a 9-1-1 report from another driver. In most cases, a police officer needs to observe the traffic violations themselves in order to conduct a traffic stop.

If you or a loved one has been charged with a DUI, and want the help of local, experienced and dedicated dui attorney in Ann Arbor, please call Dan and his team at GLG Michigan. 

Source: The Saline Reporter, "SALINE POLICE BRIEFS: Vehicle flees after crashing into light pole; Woman arrested for drunken driving," Jan. 15, 2014