Tuesday, September 23, 2008

A DUI Defender's "Perry Mason Moment"

On Friday I was able to attend an excellent seminar on Cross Examination put on by the NCDAA which featured Terry and Terry MacCarthy of Chicago. Terry, Jr., was my instructor at the National Criminal Defense College and is both an excellent teacher and lawyer. Terry, Sr., is the nation's leading expert on cross examination. I'll write more on the seminar later, but thought at the end of it that I love to go to these things both for the information and the opportunity to meet with other criminal defense attorneys from across the state and nation.

Bell Island, an excellent criminal defense lawyer from Scottsbluff, NE, described learning a lot about defending DUI cases after joining the NCDD (I know, there are a lot of similar acronyms!) which stands for the National College of DUI Defense. I first heard of the college after attending a seminar that Troy McKinney conducted a few years ago. Since then, I've intended to join but haven't yet. Bell, as well as five or six other Nebraska attorneys, joined the College after hearing Troy's presentation, which was fortunate as just a few years ago there were no members from Nebraska.

Bell told me how much he learned from the college, but it was a story he told that brought this home. He described being in trial, cross examining the State's expert on the Datamaster breath testing device. During the cross, the expert, in front of the jury, blurted out a statement criminal defense lawyers aim for but rarely hear. He said:

"I don't know. You know that machine better than I do."

Guess who the jury listened to? They listened to the expert, who told them to listen to Bell, who later heard two other words: "Not Guilty."

Troy McKinney's presentation a few years ago made me want to join the NCDD, but Bell's story made me finally write out the check. Hopefully I'll know that machine better than their experts in the future.

When you look for a DUI lawyer, ask yourself if they know the machine this well. If they do, you're in good hands.


Jenny said...

The family, including Nowak herself and her husband, used the diapers then because at the time motels were swamped and restrooms and privacy were scarce. With reporters gathered around after a routine court hearing today, Lykkebak testily described how the family used the diapers.


Troy McKinney said...


Glad you were motivated and glad you joined NCDD. There is stength in numbers and NCDD has grown to over 900 attorneys nationwide. It is good to see more Nebraska lawyers joining NCDD. I hope NCDD exceeds your expectations.


W. Troy McKinney
Schneider & McKinney, P.C.
440 Louisiana
Suite 800
Houston, TX. 77002
713-224-6008 fax
Board Certified Criminal Law - Texas Board of Legal Specialization
Board Certified in DWI Defense Law - National College for DUI Defense
NCDD certification program approved by the American Bar Association and
Accredited by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.