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Charles H. Williams,
Attorney and Counselor
at Law, P.S.
707 South Snoqualmie
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Seattle, WA 98108

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Colts owner facing DUI and drug charges

Seattle Seahawks fans likely know Jim Irsay, the owner of the Colts. He became nation-wide news when the Colts parted ways with Peyton Manning. But his latest appearance in the national spotlight is about something far more serious than losing Peyton Manning to the Broncos: police recently arrested Irsay on DUI charges.

Police pulled Irsay over this past weekend after seeing him driving slowly, stopping in the road and failing to use his turn signal. Following the stop, police administered several roadside field sobriety tests, each of which Irsay allegedly failed. But reports did not specify whether police gave Irsay a breathalyzer and, if so, what Irsay's BAC level was.

Police also found drugs in Irsay's car. The drugs reportedly were considered "class IV" which might include substances such as Xanax, Ambien and Darvocet.

Following the discovery, authorities took Irsay into custody and held him overnight. He was released after posting a $22,500 bond.

He is facing one misdemeanor charge of driving while intoxicated. He is also facing four felony counts of possession of a controlled substance. Each of the felony counts could result in six months to three years. In addition to the criminal repercussions, Irsay may receive discipline from the NFL too.

Given that Irsay is looking at as much as 12 years in jail - not to mention serious fines - he will want to take his defense very seriously. Washingtonians charged with DUI and drug offenses should do the same.

A key defense in these cases often includes highlighting every instance in which police failed to follow proper procedure. The officer may not have had cause to pull the car over. The officer may have failed to follow the prescribed methodology when conduct the Breathalyzer, blood draw or field sobriety test. These types of errors can result in evidence getting tossed and, with it, the charges as well.

Source: Fox Sports, "Colts owner Irsay out of jail, faces felony charges," Mar. 17, 2014

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