Articles Posted in TrafficOffenses

On April 7, 2017 CN, a 59 year old engineer, was driving to work when she got pulled over by a Bedford (MA) police officer and was given a civil motor vehicle citation for failure to slow at an intersection. CN has a lengthy motor vehicle record and was at risk of losing her license and of getting hit with additional insurance surcharges. CN retained attorney Robert Lewin from North Andover. Attorney Lewin had CN go to the intersection in question and take a series of pictures. The pictures were helpful in showing that CN had an unobstructed view of the traffic on the intersecting way. Attorney Lewin prepared CN for the hearing and gave her the do’s and dont’s of testifying before the clerk-magistrate. On July 12, 2017 Attorney Lewin and CN appeared in Concord District Court for the hearing before the Clerk-Magistrate. CN testified and Attorney Lewin presented the photos. The Clerk-Magistrate found CN NOT responsible. CN left the courthouse with a smile on her face.

EN, the 36 year old owner of a manufacturing company and a North Andover Resident, received a citation in the mail for leaving the scene of a property damage accident in the O’Neill Tunnel in Boston. EN’s company owns about ten vehicles and employs about 40 people. EN knew nothing of any alleged accident. EN researched his company records and was able to identify the particular truck and driver. The driver had no recollection of any accident and denied being in any accident. EN failed to appear for a Clerk-Magistrate Hearing and a criminal complaint issued against EN for Leaving the Scene of a Property Damage Accident. EN was summonsed to court for an arraignment (Boston Municipal Court, Central Division). He went into the arraignment without an attorney thinking he just had to tell the Judge that he was not driving and the case would go away. The Judge told EN to get a lawyer and come back to court with his lawyer. The Judge continued the arraignment to Friday, December 2, 2016.

EN consulted with and retained Attorney Robert Lewin from North Andover. Attorney Lewin contacted the State Police to see if they had any video recording of this supposed accident. From experience in other cases Attorney Lewin is familiar with the video recording system in the O’Neill tunnel complex in Boston. In addition Attorney Lewin had EN research the company payroll records to verify exactly who had the truck on the day in question and whether the tunnel was on the truck route for that date. Attorney Lewin prepared and filed a Motion to Dismiss the case (prior to arraignment) on the grounds that there was no evidence that EN was operating the vehicle on the date alleged in the police report. The police report simply stated that EN owned the truck. There was no evidence that EN was driving the truck. A Motion to Dismiss a criminal complaint for lack of probable cause is called a DeBenadetto Motion. In addition Attorney Lewin prepared and filed a Motion to Dismiss the complaint for failure of the police to furnish the video.

On December 2, 2016 EN and Attorney Lewin appeared in the arraignment session of the Boston Municipal Court. Attorney Lewin explained to the DA that there was no evidence that EN was driving the truck. Attorney Lewin insisted that the DA dismiss the case. The DA agreed but then the DA hesitated. The case was called and Attorney Lewin explained the facts to the Judge and the Judge ordered the case dismissed prior to arraignment. The significance of the dismissal being ordered prior to arraignment is that now the case will NOT show up on EN’s CORI (Criminal Offender Record Information). EN and Attorney Lewin walked out of the Courthouse two happy people!

On September 16, 2015 DP, an 18 year old college Freshman from Andover, allowed a 16 year old friend to drive his car. DP was in the car at the time. DP thought that the friend had a learner’s permit and DP thought that because he was 18 and licensed that he could allow the friend to drive the car. DP was wrong on both counts. His friend did not have a learner’s permit and the age is 21, not 18. The friend cut another car off and unbeknownst to either DP or the friend a police car was directly behind them. The blues went on and the friend pulled over. The police cited the friend from Negligent Operation and Operating without a License. The police cited DP for allowing an improper person to operate. There is a criminal statute in Massachusetts that makes it a crime for the owner or person in control of a motor vehicle to allow an “improper person” to operate their vehicle. The term “improper person” includes someone who has no permit or license. DP had no criminal record and is a college freshman and wants to keep his record clean. DP and his parents hired Attorney Robert Lewin from North Andover to handle the case.

Attorney Lewin knows the Andover Police Prosecutor well. Attorney Lewin spoke immediately with the police prosecutor and explained the situation to the police prosecutor. The police prosecutor agreed with Attorney Lewin’s request to not have a criminal complaint be issued against DP. On October 1, 2015 Attorney Lewin and DP and his parents appeared at Lawrence District Court for a hearing before a Clerk-Magistrate. At the hearing Attorney Lewin explained that DP thought his friend had a learner’s permit and he thought that being 18 he could allow his friend to drive.

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On August 24, 2015 JO, a 52 year old woman from Lawrence was driving her car and headed the wrong way down a one way street. There was an officer there who immediately pulled her over. Unfortunately for JO her license was suspended and had been suspended since 1993 when she was involved in a car accident and failed to pay a property damage judgment that had been entered against her. In Massachusetts if you are involved in an accident where you cause damage to another vehicle (or other property) and you fail to pay for the damage the Registry suspends your license until you pay the property damage judgment or work out a payment schedule. JO had never been able to pay or work out a payment schedule. JO was cited by the officer and was sent a notice to come to court for a Clerk-Magistrate hearing for a one-way street violation and for operating after suspension of license. JO retained Attorney Robert Lewin.
Attorney Lewin told JO the best approach in these cases is to get your license reinstated before the Court hearing. It turned out that the Attorney for the party that had the property damage judgment against JO had died. Attorney Lewin sent JO to the RMV and because there was no record as to whom the money was owing and there was no one to pay the RMV lifted the suspension and reinstated JO’s driving privileges. Because it had been 22 years, JO was issued a learner’s permit and must take the driving test again. Attorney Lewin spoke with the Police Prosecutor and told the Police Prosecutor the background of the case and that JO had been reinstated by the RMV. The police prosecutor agreed that he would not press for a criminal complaint to be issued against JO at the Clerk-Magistrate Hearing.
On September 24, 2015, JO and Attorney Lewin appeared at Lawrence District Court for a Clerk-Magistrate Hearing. Attorney Lewin showed the Clerk-Magistrate and the Police Prosecutor JO’s new learners permit. Attorney Lewin asked that a criminal complaint not be issued against JO. The Clerk-Magistrate then dismissed the application for the criminal complaint and she also entered a not responsible finding on the one-way street violation. JO won her entire case. JO walked out of the courthouse very happy.

On April 23, 2014, BN, a 20 year old male from Tewksbury, was driving on his way to work. He was on Livingston Street in Tewksbury. A car was parked on the right side of the road with its hazard lights on. That car was half way in the travel lane and half way over the fog line. BN approached the stopped vehicle, slowed, put his left directional signal on, proceeded over the center line of the road, passed the stopped vehicle, and then went back into his lane of travel. An unmarked car pulled up behind BN and began to blink its lights. The unmarked car got right on BN’s tail. BN continued on. The unmarked car then pulled alongside BN and the operator held up a police badge. BN pulled over. An off-duty Tewksbury Police Officer came out of the unmarked car and approached BN. The off-duty police officer called for a cruiser and an on-duty police officer responded to the scene. BN was ordered out of his car; he was patted down by the police; the police searched his car. The police found nothing. The police then gave BN a citation for speeding and two marked lane violations.

BN requested a hearing and mailed in the citation. BN went to the first hearing before the Clerk-Magistrate without a lawyer and lost. BN appealed.

BN retained Attorney Robert Lewin from North Andover for the appeal hearing in front of the Judge. BN met with Attorney Lewin and fully prepared for the hearing. BN and Attorney Lewin went over the facts of the case in great detail. Attorney Lewin thoroughly prepared BN to testify. Attorney Lewin had BN practice his testimony as if they were in Court.

EC, a 69 year old gentlemen from Stoneham, had 3 convictions for OUI in Massachusetts. His last conviction was in 2006. As a result of that conviction he lost his license for 13 years [8 years for the conviction + 5 years for refusing the breath test]. In 2010, EC retained Attorney Robert Lewin from North Andover in an attempt to get a hardship license. Attorney Lewin had EC document attendance at AA meetings over a number of months and Attorney Lewin had EC enroll for treatment and counseling with a LDAC (Licensed Drug & Alcohol Counselor). A report was obtained from the LDAC. EC obtained a letter from his employer documenting the need for a license. Attorney Lewin and EC went to the Registry of Motor Vehicles (in Wilmington) for a hearing on obtaining a hardship license. After a lengthy hearing the hearing officer took the case under advisement. After several weeks EC received a notice from the RMV that his application for a hardship had been approved. The hardship license was granted (8 AM to 8 PM) with an IID (Ignition Interlock Device). EC got the IID installed in his car obtained the hardship license and life was good.

On December 19, 2014 EC went up to New Hampshire. The hours past by and at about 10:30 PM EC headed back home to Stoneham. He was pulled over on Rt. 95 in Boxford for speeding by the State Police. When the police officer saw that EC’s driving privileges ended at 8:00 PM the Trooper wrote EC up for speeding and unlicensed operation. EC again contacted Attorney Lewin. Attorney Lewin instructed EC to request a clerk-magistrate hearing immediately (that day). EC took the citation to Haverhill District Court and requested a Clerk-Magistrate Hearing. On January 20, 2015 EC and Attorney Lewin appeared in Haverhill District Court for the hearing. Attorney Lewin explained to the clerk-magistrate that EC had not been drinking at all and that this was simply an example of EC having let the time pass beyond 8:00 PM. Attorney Lewin requested that a criminal complaint not be issued against EC. The State Police did not object and the Clerk then denied the application for the criminal complaint and found EC not responsible of the speeding charge.

On March 14, 2014 EB, a 42 year old RN was observed operating a motor vehicle on the Mass. Pike. The state police ran a random check of the Registration Plate and it indicated that the owner of the vehicle was a 42 year old female whose license had been revoked for two years following a conviction for OUI 2nd Offense in November 2013. The trooper pulled EB over and she immediately confessed to the officer that her license was revoked for two years as the result of her conviction for OUI Second Offense. After considerable pleading by EB the Trooper did not arrest EB but issued her a citation for OAS for OUI (Operating After Suspension where the suspension is the result of an OUI Conviction). The trooper had her car towed from the scene. This offense carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 60 days in the House of Correction, no exceptions.

EB immediately contacted Attorney Robert Lewin. Attorney Lewin directed EB to IMMEDIATELY go to the Waltham District Court and request a hearing. The next day EB went to Waltham District Court and requested a hearing.

EB was a widow and the single parent of a 12 year old son. She worked full time as a nurse and was a cancer surgery survivor. The best hope for avoiding the 60 day jail sentence (maximum 2 1/2 years) was to try to resolve the case at the Clerk-Magistrate Hearing without a criminal complaint issuing. Attorney Lewin reached out to the State Trooper who issued the citation to thank him for not arresting EB, but rather citing her.

On November 8, 2012 in the early afternoon, DB, a 47 year old roofing company foreman, was pulled over by the Malden Police on the basis of an anonymous tip. He had just pulled out of the parking lot of a local bar in Malden where he had been drinking for about one and a half hours. He was asked to exit his vehicle which he did. He was asked to perform field sobriety tests and he refused. He was asked to submit to a breath test and he refused. Based on the observations of his condition by the police he was arrested and charged with operating under the influence. He was brought to the Malden PD where a check of his criminal record revealed that he had three prior convictions dating back to 1984. As a result of his refusing the chemical test he was immediately subjected to a lifetime loss of his license. Massachusetts law imposes a mandatory lifetime loss of license on anyone who refuses a chemical test following an arrest for OUI if that person has three prior convictions for OUI in his lifetime at the time of the arrest. DB also faced a potential 5 year state prison sentence or a 2 1/2 year sentence to the House of Correction. An OUI 4th offense carries a mandatory minimum 2 year sentence of which 1 year must be served before parole eligibility. DB retained Attorney Robert Lewin.
Attorney Lewin immediately got the police reports and reviewed them with great care. Attorney Lewin obtained the turret tapes from the Malden PD to hear the dispatch information that was given out to the officers in the street and in particular to the officers involved in pulling DB’s car over. The stop of DB’s car by the police did not seem right. Before the police can stop a motor vehicle on the roadway they must have a “reasonable suspicion based upon articulable facts that a crime has been, is being, or is about to be committed”. The police were claiming that they had received a “tip” that a man who appeared to be drunk was entering a motor vehicle behind the bar and was headed out onto the street. When the police dispatcher first gave out the call he said that a bank teller had witnessed the drunk man getting into the motor vehicle; when the officers pulled DB over they radioed the dispatcher as to who had given out the tip. The dispatcher radioed back that it was a bank customer. This created a real doubt about whether a tip had actually been received. Attorney Lewin filed a Motion for a Copy of the 911 Tape; no recording (such as a 911 call) of the tip was ever found or produced. Attorney Lewin prepared and filed a Motion to Suppress all the evidence obtained by the police following the stop of DB’s vehicle. This included the identity of DB as the operator of the vehicle and all observations of his condition. On January 6, 2014 (some 14 months after his arrest) there was a full evidentiary hearing in Malden Court on the Motion to Suppress the evidence. The Judge hearing the Motion made the following findings and rulings: “The police had no reasonable suspicion to stop the Defendant’s motor vehicle; the so-called reporting party was never identified; no description of the operator of the vehicle was ever furnished; there was no evidence of any reasonable suspicion to stop the driver of the Defendant’s motor vehicle.” The Judge then granted the Motion to Suppress ALL the evidence the police obtained following the stop of DB on the street. In other words the Judge threw out all the evidence on the grounds that the stop of DB’s motor vehicle was illegal. The Middlesex County DA’s Office filed a Motion to Reconsider which the Judge denied. On March 21, 2014 the DA’s Office filed a “Nolle Prosequi”. A “Nolle Prosequi” is a termination of the prosecution of a criminal case by the Commonwealth. The “Nolle Prosequi” reads as follows: “The motion to suppress was allowed and all evidence was suppressed. As a result, the Commonwealth cannot proceed.” Two hours ago DB and Attorney Robert Lewin walked out of Malden Court. DB, with a big smile on his face, thanked Attorney Lewin and asked Attorney Lewin to send him a copy of the “Nolle Prosequi” so that he could frame it.

KU, a 35 year old moving company owner, drove his pick-up truck to the Market Basket supermarket on the Lawrence/North Andover line. As he was pulling out of the parking lot he struck a parked car. He paused but then drove away. He drove home, left the pick-up truck at home, and drove his car to work. Two hours later he got a call from the North Andover Police. A witness had seen the accident and had seen KU leave and got the plate. At first KU denied it but then admitted to the officer that he had panicked and fled the scene. The North Andover Police issued a citation to KU for leaving the scene of a property damage accident. KU called Lewin & Lewin and spoke with Attorney Robert Lewin who told KU to immediately go to the Lawrence District Court and request a Clerk’s Hearing for the citation. KU did that and then retained Attorney Robert Lewin to defend the case.

Attorney Lewin went over to the Court and spoke immediately with the North Andover Police Prosecutor. Attorney Lewin obtained KU’s auto insurance policy to show that the damage to the other car would be completely covered. In addition Attorney Lewin obtained proof from the insurance company that the owner of the other vehicle had been completely reimbursed for his damages by KU’s insurance company. In many of these hit and run cases – particularly if there is no alcohol involved – the main concern of the police is making sure that the owner of the damaged vehicle or property is fully reimbursed. Attorney Lewin furnished all the insurance documents to the Police Prosecutor. Prior to the Clerk’s Hearing Attorney Lewin and the police prosecutor reached an agreement that they would recommend to the Court Clerk-Magistrate that no criminal complaint be issued against KU.

On Thursday, September 12, 2013, KU and Attorney Robert Lewin appeared in Lawrence District Court for the Clerk-Magistrate’s Hearing. Attorney Lewin and the Police Prosecutor explained to the Clerk-Magistrate that the victim had been fully reimbursed. The police prosecutor indicated to the Clerk-Magistrate that the police were satisfied. The Clerk then dismissed the application for criminal complaint. KU – although he was guilty of the offense – walked away without being charged. KU left the Court a very happy man.

On August 31, 2012, AS, a 67 year old retiree, went out for a few drinks at a local pub in Haverhill. Late at night he left the pub highly intoxicated, got into his SUV, and tried driving to his home in Methuen. In the center of Haverhill is a War Memorial which is situated on a grass plot. AS drove his SUV off the roadway, over the curb and sidewalk, into the War Memorial area. In the area was a homeless man sleeping a a bench. The front of AS’s SUV struck the bench going up over the bench over the homeless man sleeping on the bench. AS backed his car up and left the area as if nothing had happened. AS continued on his way eventually striking a roadsign and knocking it down. Once again he continued on his way. He travelled from Haverhill into Newton, NH where he drove off the road into a ditch. Witnesses had seen his car drive over the bench with the homeless man and called in his registration plate to the police. Other witnesses saw him strike the sign and called that into the police. A BOLO (Be On The Lookout) was put out by the Haverhill Police and picked up by the Newton, NH Police who had discovered AS in his car in the ditch. AS was removed from his car; he had urinated himself; he was arrested for DUI in NH. The Haverhill and Mass. State Police responded to NH to continue their investigation. It was not known if the homeless man on the bench would survive his injuries.

AS was charged with Aggravated DUI in NH (the Aggravatiung circumstance being a high Breath Test reading). In Massachusetts AS was charged with OUI/Negligent Operation Causing Serious Bodily Injury, Two counts of Leaving the Scene Property Damage, Leaving the Scene Personal Injury, two Counts of Aggravated Reckless Assault & Battery by Dangerous Weapon, and a number of civil motor vehicle infractions.

AS retained Attorney Robert Lewin. Attorney Lewin brought in Associate Counsel to handle the NH piece of the case.