DUI Mom Crashes with Her Child in the Car

A Main Line mother has been charged with DUI when she crashed her car with both her 2-year-old son and two family dogs in the vehicle at the time of the accident.

Tony Fischer

Grace Tuten, 32, of the 1000 block of Clover Hill Road in Wynnewood, faces the charges of DUI, reckless driving and driving too fast for conditions.

According to investigators, Tuten sheered a utility pole with her Volvo station wagon in the 700 block of Williamson Road in Bryn Mawr, then crossed the road with her car, hitting a mailbox and a large rock. The accident occurred just after 8:00 p.m. on Friday.

No serious injuries were reported, as a result of the accident. However, according to police the 2-year-old was taken to the hospital as a precautionary measure. The dogs that were being carried in the cargo area of the vehicle were also unharmed in the accident.

Police report that a breathalyzer test shows that Tuten had a blood alcohol content of .28%, well over the legal limit of .08%.… Read More

Philadelphia Narcotics Officer Accused of DUI Following Eagles-Chargers Game

A recent Philly.com article detailed the allegations that a Philadelphia narcotics officer is currently facing. On September 15, the officer was reportedly coming from the Eagles-Chargers game at Lincoln Financial Field when he drove into oncoming traffic on State Road near Park Avenue in Upper Darby at approximately 8:30 p.m. The officer’s vehicle collided head-on with an 18-year-old male driver, who suffered injuries in the accident. That driver was treated for injuries at Delaware County Memorial Hospital and released.

At the scene of the accident, the officer failed a field sobriety test administered by Upper Darby police, and refused to take a blood test to measure his blood alcohol content (BAC). Law enforcement officials released the officer to his girlfriend, and he was given a summons to appear in court October 28 to face several charges, including DUI and careless driving. According to Upper Darby police, the officer was not further detained because he had no prior offenses.… Read More

Alleged Drunk Driver Injures Seven in Collision Outside Eagles Game

Philly.com reported that a 25-year-old drunk driver caused a crash outside the Eagles game Sept. 19 that injured seven people. The man allegedly was traveling west in a Jeep Grand Cherokee when he plowed into a Ford Escape carrying six people as the Ford attempted to make a turn. All six people in the Ford suffered injuries, and two of the people were in critical condition at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (HUP) with head trauma, although they were expected to survive. The other four occupants of the Ford were in stable condition at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital and HUP. The alleged drunk driver of the Jeep also suffered minor injuries; he was treated at Methodist Hospital before being released to police custody.

The collision also caused the Ford to strike another vehicle, a Honda Pilot that also was westbound, but none of its occupants was injured or impaired, according to police.… Read More

Bucks County Woman Faces Homicide by Vehicle Charges for Death of Motorcyclist

According to a recent article in the Philadelphia Inquirer, a 49-year-old Bucks County woman has been charged with homicide by vehicle for her role in the drunk driving accident that led to the death of a motorcyclist in Solebury Township on the morning of July 16. The victim was a Canadian man who was riding his motorcycle on Route 202 when he was struck by Nancy Smith, who was driving her SUV with her 15-year-old daughter and attempting to turn from Route 202 into the Logan Square Shopping Center. At the time of the accident, Smith’s blood alcohol content level was 0.288 percent, which, as any Bucks County PA DUI lawyer can tell you, is more than three times the legal limit in the state of Pennsylvania. Allegedly, Smith had consumed alcohol the night before the accident, and had awoken at 4 a.m. to do housework after sleeping only for a couple of hours.… Read More

Seat-Switching Duo Both Charged with DUI on Same Traffic Stop

dui-you-cant-afford-it-pennsylvaniaAccording to NBC Philadelphia, a western Pennsylvania couple is facing DUI charges stemming from a Fourth of July traffic stop. The unusual part of this incident is that both the 33-year-old man and the 24-year-old woman, who live together in New Sewickley Township, were charged for driving drunk in the same vehicle on the same night, within minutes of one another. Law enforcement authorities allege that the man was initially driving and swerving through traffic, when he pulled into a parking lot. He then switched seats with his female passenger, who was in the driver’s seat at the time of the traffic stop.

Police claimed that both individuals smelled of alcohol and were too intoxicated to drive safely when they were stopped, yet both had been driving the vehicle. Officers measured the blood alcohol content (BAC) of both parties; the man’s blood alcohol content was above the legal limit, while the woman’s BAC was just slightly below the legal limit.… Read More

DUI Fatality Leads to Vehicular Homicide Charges for Delaware County Woman

philly-city-hallAccording to a recent Philly.com article, a 23-year-old Delco woman is facing vehicular homicide, involuntary manslaughter, and DUI charges stemming from an accident last summer in which her 21-year-old male passenger died. The woman reportedly was driving west on Enterprise Avenue in Southwest Philadelphia in July 2012 when she drifted onto the shoulder of the street and slammed into a stopped tractor-trailer. The collision caused severe head and body trauma to her passenger, who died two days later at the Hospital at the University of Pennsylvania.

As this case illustrates, what may be a simple case of DUI can quickly become a much more serious crime when severe injuries or death results from the incident. While many DUI cases never involve an accident or injury to anyone, some do, which can expose the intoxicated driver not only to civil liability, but also to multiple criminal charges with harsh and serious penalties that have the potential to negatively impact a person’s life for years to come.… Read More

Teen Faces Criminal Charges Following Fatal DUI Texting Collision

striped-road-asphaltA recent news article reports that a 19-year-old western Pennsylvania teen was charged with homicide by vehicle and involuntary manslaughter following an accident last year in which the teen driver crossed the center line into oncoming traffic and hit a car, killing both its driver and passenger. Authorities claim that the teen was texting and driving under the influence of alcohol at the time of the fatal accident. Although the teen’s Pennsylvania DUI attorney claims that the teen was not texting when the collision occurred, phone records allegedly indicate otherwise.

The teen’s attorney also alleges that the teen was not under the influence of alcohol at the time of the crash. Although the police acknowledge that the teen was not legally intoxicated, he was charged because he was a minor who allegedly had some alcohol in his system at the time of the accident. Under Pennsylvania law, a minor may not have physical control over the movement of a vehicle when having a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.02% or greater, as measured within two hours of the time that the minor has driven, operated, or been in actual control of the vehicle.… Read More

Scandal-Plagued Philly Traffic Court Expected to Meet Its Demise in Near Future

courthouseAccording to the Delaware County Daily Times, legislation to abolish the Philadelphia traffic court is headed toward the desk of Governor Tom Corbett, which he has pledged to sign into law. Senate Bill 334, which was first introduced in the Pennsylvania Senate by Delaware County Senator Dominic Pileggi, R-9, of Chester, moves traffic court duties to a new Traffic Court Division of the Philadelphia Municipal Court. The House approved the bill in early June after amending it to include two additional Municipal Court judges and require an annual report from the newly created division. The Senate voted unanimously in favor of the amended bill on June 11. After the governor signs the bill into law, currently scheduled elections for the traffic court will be vacated and the Municipal Court will immediately begin establishing a new Traffic Division. A separate piece of legislation, Senate Bill 333, also introduced by Sen. Pileggi, eliminates the Philadelphia Traffic Court from the Pennsylvania State Constitution.… Read More

Pennsylvania BAC Limits Unlikely to Change Despite NTSB Recommendation


PA DUI Attorney Expects Resistance from States

pennsylvania state capitolAccording to a recent Philly.com article, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), in an effort to reach its goal of completely eliminating alcohol-related motor vehicle fatalities in the United States, called for all 50 states to reduce their legal blood alcohol content (BAC) for drivers to 0.05%. Currently, every state nationwide has a legal BAC limit for drivers of 0.08%.

Despite this recommendation and other initiatives to lower the incidence of alcohol-related traffic fatalities, however, history shows that change in Pennsylvania laws with respect to BAC legal limits is unlikely to change anytime soon, and may not change for years. The NTSB last recommended a reduction in BAC legal limits in 1982, when it called for a decrease from 0.10% to 0.08%. Utah and Oregon reduced their BAC limits accordingly in 1983, but it would take more than 20 years before all 50 states passed laws reducing their legal limits to meet the NTSB recommendation of 0.08%.… Read More

Bucks County Ambulance Driver Fired for On-Duty DUI

DUI Attorney in Bucks County PA Wary of Career Implications

According to a recent article in The Advance, leaders of the Newtown Ambulance Squad met with Newtown Township supervisors about a highly publicized incident in April involving a minor accident by a reportedly intoxicated ambulance driver that occurred while he was transporting a patient. Squad leaders met with township leaders in order to reassure them that they would take additional steps to ensure that drivers were not under the influence of alcohol or drugs before ever getting behind the wheel of an ambulance.

In the incident at issue, the driver and another employee were called into work in order to transport a non-emergency patient from the hospital for an evaluation. The other employee noticed that the driver was driving erratically and contacted the dispatcher to have another employee come to the scene in order to transport the patient. When the driver attempted to park the ambulance, however, he hit the curb and flattened one of the ambulance’s tires.… Read More