Thursday, November 11, 2010

Don't you think a DUI Cop will taken into consideration someone with cerebral palsy, epilepsy and other disabilities stopped while riding a bike?

Don't you think a DUI Cop will taken into consideration someone with cerebral palsy, epilepsy and other disabilities stopped while riding a motorized bicycle?

No? Correct. He was arrested for DUI in Utah after admitting he takes medication.

The man, Mike Tilt, stopped by Utah Highway Patrol Trooper Lisa Steed, was asked to take a DUI field sobriety test.

However, Tilt, whose left leg is shorter than his right, told the DUI officer that he would likely fail the test (which requires him to put one foot in front of the other), and he did.

Tilt told Steed he did not have a driver's license for 15 years due to his seizures.

After asking Tilt if he took medication for his epilepsy, she handcuffed him.

According to Tilt, when he asked if he were being arrested, Steed replied, "Yeah, for DUI."

Ironically, Tilt had forgotten to take his medication that night.

In defending the trooper's actions, Utah Highway Patrol said many people drive under the influence of prescription medications.

They also praised Steed, who was named Trooper of the Year in 2007 for her arrests of drivers suspected of being under the influence. Over the past eight she has made nearly 800 DUI arrests, roughly half that in 2009 alone.

UHP Captain Bob Anderson told Jones that he was confident Steed followed procedure and the law.

Jones himself described Steed as "absolutely dedicated to getting drunk drivers off the road."

Tilt's daughter, Courtney Tilt, told Jones, "If she's proud of taking in an epileptic patient for a DUI, I don't know what to think of her and her character."

Steed was allegedly chastised by judges for allegedly disregarding UHP procedures, in one instance calling her actions "especially troubling." Another judge allegedly said she "lacks credibility."

In some instances (though not in Tilt's case) Steed conducted field sobriety tests out of view of her police car's dashboard camera, counter to UHP policy.

DUI Criminal Defense Lawyer Glen Neeley, who has represented several people stopped by Steed, said to Jones that Steed's goal is to pull over as many people as possible with the goal of making DUI arrests. (That then qualifies for most MADD DUI arrests Award.)

Captain Mike Rapich stepped in: "This individual is not to be prosecuted for DUI."

Thank goodness for Captains.