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Richard E Oberdorfer
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Richard Oberdorfer’s Answers

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  • Will my license be SUSPENDED for life? I'm not sure and don't understand if my diversion count's as an conviction?

    I live in Oregon State. I received a DUI in 2004. I got diversion and probation for this crime, but I completed it as required. Then in 2007 I was convicted of a DUI, and completed everything as required. Now on New Year's Eve, of 2014, I was s...

    Richard’s Answer

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    This is a question you should be asking in a lawyer's office. It doesn't take much work to get there -- just call one of us DUII specialists in the tri-county area and set an appointment. Most of us don't charge for the consultation, and you'd walk out knowing the answer to this and many other questions -- your stress would drop phenomenally. Based on the info you've posted, NO, you are not looking at a Lifetime Revocation. That's for people with a third CONVICTION, and you write that your first DUII arrest ended up in a dismissal for successful completion of Diversion. On the other hand, there are many collateral suspensions you could be looking at, which is why you need to be in a DUII lawyer's office. One of the more common is the Habitual Offender Revocation, for people who also have a DWS (Driving While Suspended) or other major traffic crime on their record in the past 5 years. Ultimately, you're exposure sounds like second DUII conviction (unless you win at trial, and there may be MANY reasons you should go to trial -- sounds like you've never had one!), which in Clackamas County can mean 20-60 days jail. You could of course get up to the statutory maximum of one year in jail, but that's unlikely based on what you've shared here. Again, there are too many variables to put on the internet, and the internet is not confidential (e.g., the prosecutor / your arresting cop can get on the computer and read everything you post). So don't post any more details, and get into a good DUII lawyer's office now! We usually can see a new client the same day, or within a few days of the phone call, depending on our schedule. Good luck!

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  • Got MIP but no proof of me drinking. Can I fight this?

    I was sittin in a car with two other friends parked outside of a friends house, the car was off and a police officer comes to my door so I open it & he demands my ID. I ask why, he refused to explain why so I refused to show it to him. Another cop...

    Richard’s Answer

    Yes, you can fight this, WITH A GOOD LAWYER. Its probably best to hire a prominent DUII specialist in your area, because we understand what a judge will and will not accept as evidence of alcohol consumption. Also, in Oregon You are looking at a ONE-YEAR DRIVER LICENSE SUSPENSION if convicted, even though your case had nothing to do with you driving, so again: get a good lawyer, now. The stakes are too high. Plus, if convicted this will go onto your DMV and law enforcement records, and can be used against you by prospective employers. Get a professional on-board now, by calling one and setting an office conference. Most of us charge nothing for the initial consultation. Good luck, and I'm sorry the police hurt you.

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  • I got a reckless driving charge in Idaho and they suspended my license I am from oregon w/ a ODL does my suspension follow to OR

    I had a medication change which caused me to have a severe mental break down where I got in my car and drove 700 miles from OR to Alexander ID no reason that's just where I ended up then a few hours after my arrival I just snapped and totally los...

    Richard’s Answer

    The Driver License Compact is an interstate agreement that your driving conduct will be treated by your licensing state as if it occurred on its home soil. If Oregon gets wind of your conduct (which includes several reasons for suspension or revocation), Oregon DMV may take action against your driver license. It will likely do so by mail, so make sure your mailing address is current with Oregon DMV and watch your mail carefully. You may want to hire an attorney now to defend you against the potential driver license sanctions, or, less carefully, you could wait until you actually possess a suspension or revocation notice from Oregon DMV. It's always better to hire an attorney early, rather than too late. Idaho can take action against your ability to legally drive in Idaho.

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  • I received a "Show Cause" subpoena last week trying to revoke my DUII diversion for a false pos. IID blow. Perplexed.

    My DUII occurred in Harney County in Oct. of 2013., and my BAC was a 0.07. I requested diversion and was granted it. My diversion was over in Nov. 2014 and I have paid for and complied with all the requirements. Now they are disputing a false p...

    Richard’s Answer

    Don’t eat or drink anything within 15 minutes of using an Ignition Interlock Device (IID). And since they come with “rolling re-tests,” don’t eat or drink while driving at all.

    That’s the advice I give everyone about IIDs. It is shocking, and a life-change for many busy people who typically have coffee or food while driving. I give this advice, however, for a few different reasons:

    (1) The IID does not measure alcohol. No breath testing machines do. Instead, what they measure — whether by fuel cell, or semiconductor, or infrared spectrometer — are methyl group chemical compounds. One of those compounds is ethyl alcohol. The machine assumes whatever it’s seeing is booze. People who work with gasoline or paint are at risk, so are people on any diet or who are fasting. In cross examination of Oregon State Crime Lab technicians, they have also admitted that false positives can be achieved through eating fresh bread or Altoids. In anecdotal use of various breath testing devices — on myself and colleagues — I have seen food and drink act as interferents and cause either (a) false positives or (b) vastly artificially high readings. Guess what the lock-out level is the the IIDs? It’s supposed to “Correlate well with established measures of alcohol impairment.” ORS 813.600(2)(c). So what are you thinking, .08? The AMA’s new recommendation for .05? Nope. .025% BAC.

    (2) Any food or drink can cause a positive alcohol result. When you were arrested for DUII, your Oregon police officer used an infrared spectrometer — the Intoxilyzer 8000 — to gauge your BAC. Before doing so, science required him to “observe” you for at least 15 minutes to ensure you took nothing by mouth. Nothing. I suggest the same rule for use of an IID — take nothing by mouth for 15 minutes before use, and eat / drink nothing while driving.

    (3) ADES is not necessarily on your side. ADES can use the downloaded “fails,” “lockouts,” and even any positive “alcohol” result to lodge Diversion Revocation proceedings. So far, they’ve had trouble proving that the defendant was in fact the driver. In part because of this, ADES is angling for the legislature to require camera-based IIDs — and if they fail at the legislature, they’ll try it through rule-making. Point is, ADES in some counties considers itself part of the prosecution team and can aggressively pursue Diversion Revocation for people with IID problems. Cynics might say there’s a fiscal motivation — if you get kicked out of Diversion, you’ll be paying some new fees to ADES. Maybe you’ll be on probation the next 5 years, instead of Diversion for 1.

    The legislature intended the use of IIDs prophylactically — and the studies support that use. In other words, IIDs vastly reduce the incidence of drunk driving. But as some ADES providers and prosecutors twist this new, prophylactic tool into a prosecution tool, abuses will follow. It is in the very nature of government, power, and surveillance — and let’s face it, that’s what IIDs are all about. Enforced government surveillance.

    Finally, the use of IIDs for prosecution or revocation purposes does not gibe with my decade-plus of experience as a DUII lawyer. Most people I represent on a DUII Diversion, I never see again — because they change their habits and behaviors with alcohol. Either they abstain; or they moderate; or they divorce drinking from driving. IIDs will do nothing for those folks. They should not be treated by reference to their worst possible example.

    But since they are…just don’t have anything to eat or drink for 15 minutes before using an IID. And don’t eat or drink while driving at all.

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  • Got 1st time DUI in CA, DL based in IA & currently living in OR. Driver record still clear @ IA DMV. Want to apply for OR DL.

    Arrested May 2014 for 1st time DUI. CA DMV & Court both convicted me Sept 2014. Court ordered 100 hr comm service w/ any nonprofit in OR (almost done) plus fines & 5 yr probation (obey all laws, drive with valid DL etc). CA DMV suspension ends ...

    Richard’s Answer

    First, you can only apply for an Oregon driver license if you're an Oregon resident. Second, the law you cite is part of the Interstate Compact, see here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Driver_License_Compact
    Third, Oregon DMV will not give you a license if you're currently suspended in another state. So it would not be this Oregon lawyer's advice to apply for an Oregon license in January since you know you are suspended until April in California (when one applies for a license here, the application asks if you are or ever have been suspended, when and why).

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  • My lawyer keeps trying to get me to plea out, I have requested a jury trial and am innocent of all charges. What are my options

    I was arrested in my home for an alleged DUI. I went to the liquor store, then on the way home went to McDonalds. A drive thru worker at McDonalds called the police to state that I was driving intoxicated, that I was bobbing my head, my eyes look...

    Richard’s Answer

    If I went to my doctor and I didn't agree with her advice, I would go get a second opinion. That's what you should do. And you should get the second opinion from a lawyer (preferably a DUII specialist -- just like in health care, it's smartest to see a specialist!), not the computer. Sit down with a DUII specialist who knows the law, the court, and the local judges. See if their advice is any different from your current lawyer. If it's the same, you'll feel better about your decision to plead; if it's different, you'll feel better about going to trial. It can't hurt, and the consulting lawyer isn't supposed to chat with your current lawyer without your permission, so you can keep it under wraps. I just don't see any reason for you to not get yourself into another DUII lawyer's office ASAP. Again, get off the computer, and into a lawyer's office. Good luck, and I hope your life is getting better. We've all had times where getting drunk seems like a good idea -- and that's not illegal. It's only illegal if we combine it with driving!

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  • Does DUI diversion prohibit ownership or purchase of firearms?

    I was arrested for a DUII earlier this year and plead for diversion, I was deemed eligible for diversion and am about half way done with the mandatory classes; I attempted to purchase a firearm earlier today and was told that the oregon state poli...

    Richard’s Answer

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    In Oregon, the Sheriff can take away your concealed weapons permit if you're on pretrial release, and DUII Diversion is considered to include pretrial release in at least one county I know of (even though there will never be a trial in your case, since you pleaded guilty or no contest to the crime to enter Diversion). Check your original Release Agreement from the night of your arrest -- does it contain a prohibition on possessing firearms, until the case is fully adjudicated?

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  • Will i be drug tested at my initial assessment at evaluation services hillsboro post my first Dui conviction?

    initial evaluation is Thursday the 13th November.

    Richard’s Answer

    Often you will be tested in Hillsboro, but not always. I'm guessing you're worried about recent marijuana use, since most other drugs aren't that robust to worry about so far in advance of your evaluation. Initial UAs often have THC metabolites -- so long as the metabolites continue the march downwards, your Diversion agreement is not usually terminated for non-compliance (failure to abstain from alcohol and drugs). You will be asked about your date of last drink/drug. If the date you give is after Diversion entry, it may be a problem. If you're trying to make it through Diversion without a lawyer, you're likely in trouble. Hire a good one now -- don't rely on the Internet for good legal advice for your particular situation! You get what you pay for. And, the Internet is not in any way confidential (e.g., don't post more details of your case).

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  • Question about reinstating my license

    If I have two DWI's in one year and the case has been closed already and I waited three years to get my license back and I find out I have to drive with an interlock device for five of those years. Can I reopen the case and get a lawyer to try get...

    Richard’s Answer

    It's possible, but unlikely. Your lawyer would have to point to some serious problem in the plea proceedings. Uncounseled, without warning of the ridiculous dangers of representing yourself? Improper plea colloquy? A legal defense to the cases that no one advised you about? Really, most good DUII lawyers make clear the hazards of pleading guilty (especially to two DUIIs in a row!), including 3-years of suspension plus SR-22 and IID. That's why we're in trial so much -- the collateral consequences of a DUII conviction are draconian. Frankly, the IID might be a smart thing for you -- if you ever get another Oregon DUII, it's a LIFETIME LICENSE REVOCATION. Rather than hiring a lawyer to tilt at this particular windmill (it's very unlikely a judge will undo a 3-year old plea because you don't want an IID), it might be better -- and will certainly be cheaper -- to just install the IID and never drive after drinking again. But the only good legal advice will come from scheduling an office conference with a DUII specialist, and hiring them to review your old convictions.

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  • My licence was revoked for third dui got the first one at age 17 should it have counted against the 3 strike law.

    first dui 1999 age 17 second age 18 and third age 31

    Richard’s Answer

    It depends -- DUIIs are rarely handled in juvenile court because driving is considered an adult activity that automatically remands the juvenile to adult court. In any event, I fight old convictions for many reasons: age, inexperience of the defendant, misunderstanding of the consequences, insufficient colloquy (conversation with the convicting judge), and most importantly, lack of counsel. Did you have a lawyer for each of these convictions? That's probably the most important factor. It's easier to stop a Lifetime Revocation from happening in the first place -- it's harder to un-do once it's been done (why didn't your lawyer fight the old convictions? Or did your lawyer review them and find no problem?). You probably shouldn't post any more details in this public online forum, but should set an office conference with an experienced DUII specialist to get an answer to your question. 10 years is a long time to wait to apply for reinstatement!

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