Interviewer: Is there a typical person who gets arrested for DWI?
David: No, DWIs hit different individuals: old people, young people, upper income people and people from a lower income bracket. I cannot say that there is a common DWI defendant.
Interviewer: The public perception of people arrested for DWI is that they are drunk. Do you find people are drunk, or are people close to the limit and not really seriously impaired for the most part?
David: I do not find that people are drunk. Occasionally you will encounter a DWI where the person is genuinely falling down drunk. However, many of the individuals are not necessarily drunk; but arguably impaired by alcohol.
Interviewer: Do a lot of your clients have higher blood alcohol levels, or are they pretty close to the limit? Where do they come in?
David: Many of my clients refuse to take tests; refuse to take the breath test or refuse to take the blood test. With respect to those who do take the test, many of them are .09, .10, and .11; just barely over the prima facie number of 08.
Every so often, I meet people who are double the limit. That is aggravated DWI, which is a far more serious problem.
Interviewer: What is the highest blood alcohol level you have ever seen and defended?
David: The highest blood alcohol level I have ever seen with a living driver, I think, was a .33. She actually was not driving. She was standing, leaning against the side of a restaurant. She had driven there and she was indeed a .33.
The judge thought she might have burped or regurgitated; or done something during the observation period. The judge was not convinced she was .33 because ordinarily with a number of that magnitude you would not expect the individual to be standing up.
Interviewer: Are the people you defend mostly first timers or repeat offenders?
David: A majority of them are first offense DWIs. I do represent clients who of course told me the first time they would never get arrested again. But they in fact do come back two, five or seven years later. However, the majority are first offense DWI people.