Houlon Berman’s client, charged with DUI in the District of Columbia, was acquitted after a Court trial lasting two days. The client had been involved in an automobile accident, striking a parked vehicle and hitting his head on the steering wheel and windshield. Officers arriving on the scene claimed an odor of alcohol and ether (suggesting presence or recent usage of PCP). Client claimed that he was dizzy after the accident and may have suffered a concussion. During a thorough cross-examination, it was shown that the officer had not been fully trained to differentiate types of eye nystagmus. Since nystagmus is a known symptom of both head trauma and alcohol or controlled substance use, the Court could not find that Defendant had been under the influence beyond a reasonable doubt and the client was acquitted.
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