29 January 2010

Lawmaker Charged with DUI

Delegate Alex Shook, D-Mononaglia, faces a first-offense drunken driving charge following a Wednesday evening traffic stop in downtown Charleston, The Associated Press and others report.

The 40-year-old Morgantown lawyer was spotted driving the wrong way on a one-way street. The criminal complaint said "a breath test following his arrest showed Shook’s blood-alcohol level at nearly 0.18," or more than twice the 0.08 limit for legal driving.

"Shook allegedly told the officer he had been drinking beer at The Summit conference center, also downtown," AP reports. "The Chamber of Commerce had hosted a dinner there that evening for the House Judiciary Committee, which includes Shook."

Shook is free on a personal recognizance bond, and did not attend Thursday's House session. The Charleston Gazette, MetroNews and Public Broadcasting also have coverage.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This should be interesting. If Shook is treated like the rest of folks who are charged with DUI, he's in for the surprise of his life.

WV has a dual system. Regardless of what happens in court (dropped charges, etc.), there's a separate DMV hearing that is impossible to win provided the arresting officer shows up.

In my case, charges in court were dropped. At the DMV hearing the trooper repeatedly testified that he couldn't remember the salient details and still my license was revoked for two weeks and I have an interlock on the car which won't let me start the car unless I pass the built-in breathalyzer.

The insurance company I've had for 20 years cancelled me.

I was not driving drunk. What I did was to get pulled over by a trooper in a bad mood. I have $5000 in legal fees, court fees, interlock fees, mandatory drug and alcohol counseling fees, etc.

I'm all for keeping drunk drivers off the road. But let's do it honestly, ethically, and without a system that can declare you innocent in court and yet punish you in a hearing presided over by DMV's staff attorney.