What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? Pennsylvania
There are a number of reasons that I would like to fight this DUI, as I feel it never should have occured. I am currently unemployed, and cannot afford a lawyer, so I have a public defender. Over the pas 10 months, I have only met with him twice for a total of 15 minutes, which was just signing papers (more on that below).
I felt the officer had no reason to pull me over. He was behind a car in the right lane (I was in the passing/left lane), and after a little distance, went behind me because they did not pull over. When he had me pulled over, he said that he thought I was running from him because I wasn't pulling over! I had gone maybe 100-150 feet after he got behind me until there was a safe pulloff at a carwash parking lot. He claimed I had swerved into an oncoming lane, which I knew I did not. On his statement, and all paperwork, he claims that I crossed a double yellow line into the oncoming lane while passing traffic. There were a few other false statement, but this is my primary concern. He also said this happened in the 600 block of Scalp Avenue. There is a median strip along that entire block, and it is lined with 3 foot high posts. It would be impossible to cross into the lane without taking out posts, damaging my car, and probably ripping off my exhaust, among other things. Shouldn't this be grounds for dismissal of all charges, as he made an illegal stop. One theory I have is that he saw myself and the other car leave the bar, as it is only 3-5 blocks from where he decided to turn his lights on.
Now, the public defender part. He told me on our first meeting, which was at my arraignment, that since I blew positive that I'm just going to take ARD and pay the fines for the other violations that came with my incident. He also said that I was getting a public drunkenness charge because I got out of my vehicle into public when the officer told me to. He never asked my side of the story, and made me feel like there was nothing I could do, so I signed papers he said that would start the ARD enrollment process. I just did so, not really knowing what was going on. After looking back now, I waived my right to a preliminary hearing, and had no clue I was doing so. I was sort of being rushed to get out of the courtroom for the next case. I later told my defender that I wanted to fight the charges, and he said well you're taking a risk but ok. He never gave me any advice on if I had a solid case, or was just making things worse. And their office says I can't get another one assigned. All this guy wants to do is push paperwork and make me pay.
Any advice, comments, etc? Thanks.