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Supreme Court rules on Gwinnett DUI case

ATLANTA -- The Georgia Supreme Court ruled Monday against a man challenging his 2010 DUI arrest in Gwinnett.

Weston Cronkite, a New Jersey resident, was stopped for speeding in Gwinnett on Jan. 15, 2010. With breath tests at the scene producing blood-alcohol content readings of 0.187 and 0.201 -- well over Georgia's legal limit of 0.08 -- he was ultimately charged with driving under the influence.

As he awaited trial, Cronkite filed a request for the testimony of a representative from the manufacturer of the Intoxilyzer 5000, the device with which his BAC was determined. A local court and a state court of appeals ruled that the expert's testimony -- that teeth implants or partial dentures like Cronkite has could "cause the trapping of excess alcohol in one's mouth" -- was immaterial.

The Georgia Supreme Court upheld that ruling Monday with a unanimous decision.

"... Cronkite presented no evidence that mouth alcohol was present during his breath test such that an error message should have been generated that was not generated," the opinion, written by Justice Harold Melton, said. "Indeed, the mere possibility that alcohol can remain present in the mouth due to the existence of a surgical implant and retainer does not amount to evidence of facts pointing to the actual existence of excess alcohol in the mouth at the time of Cronkite's breath test."

The state was represented by Gwinnett County Solicitor General Rosanna Szabo.

Comments

hangdogs 9 months, 3 weeks ago

Can't blame a guy for tryin'.

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Don_Coyote 9 months, 3 weeks ago

What kind of legal expenses are incurred by both parties for a DUI case that ends up in the State Supreme Court? We know that no matter what, the lawyers get paid.

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peterhoover 9 months, 3 weeks ago

It's a money maker for the county on multiple levels.

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peterhoover 9 months, 3 weeks ago

It's a money maker for the county, on many levels.

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Say_that_again 9 months, 3 weeks ago

Which is more foolish: To drive drunk or let a lawyer convince you to finance an appeal that had almost no chance of success?

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Gundoctor1 9 months, 3 weeks ago

What an idiot.

Arrested a guy one night and we had the intoxilyzer at the station. This guy claimed he had to go to the bathroom really, really bad. We let him go. He stayed in there for almost 20 minutes. His idea was that that amount of time would make his BAC come back below 0.10. That's right, it wasn't always 0.08. It varies State to State, or it did back then. When he finally came out and we did the test, he blew a 0.145. So much for the stalling tactics.

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Veryconcernedcitizen 9 months, 3 weeks ago

DUI is not a money maker for the County on any level. It is a money maker for attorneys though. Defense attorneys are the only folks who benefit from DUI's.

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Coolray 9 months, 3 weeks ago

Wrong! The driving public benefits from DUI arrest.

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