Understanding DUI law can be complex. Here are five important DUI cases that can help you if you are faced with a DUI of your own.

State v. Ducatt

In State v. Ducatt, 22 Conn. App. 88, 575 A.2d 708, cert. denied, 217 Conn. 804, 584 A.2d 472 (1990). The Appellate court addressed the issue of what constitutes operation of a motor vehicle within the meaning of § 14-227a (a) (1). They concluded that an individual “operates a motor vehicle within the meaning of General Statutes § 14-227a (a) when, while under the influence of alcohol or any drug and while in the vehicle and in a position to control its movements, he manipulates, for any purpose, the machinery of the motor or any other machinery manipulable from the driver’s position that affects or could affect the vehicle’s movement, whether the accused moves the vehicle or not.”

The statute does not require that intent to move the vehicle get established. This established the “keys in the ignition” rule. The rule determines whether a car is “in operation” or not. The car never even has to move. Or, a person never has to give the car gas, and the element of “operation gets.”

State v. Nokes

In State v. Nokes, the court held that although the language calls for a rebuttable presumption for the chemical evidence to go to the jury, it should be charged as a permissive inference in the jury charge so as to not shift the burden of the evidence away from the prosecution.

State v. Coughlin

In State v. Coughlin. the State was unable to identify the person who drew the defendant’s blood. Accordingly, the Defense moved to preclude the evidence because it could not be shown that the blood draw was done in accordance with 14-227l.

State v. Kirsch

When State v. Kirsch is read in conjunction with Coughlin, it is apparent that from now on, all blood tests done at hospitals will come in against the defendant. Kirsh argued that the mere acceptance of the blood test because it was qualified under statute 52-180 was in error because it still did not obviate the need for a Porter hearing on the methodology of the blood analysis. The Supreme Court agreed with the premise, however, the Supreme Court also found that the methodology of blood collection in the hospital was a sound and scientifically valid method used for at least 15 years in the diagnosis and treatment of patients. In essence, the Supreme Court has then permanently permitted Blood evidence of intoxication.

McCoy v. Commissioner of Public Safety

McCoy v. Commissioner of Public Safety (2011) upheld the belief that a second DUI conviction within 10 years of the first is considered a felony offense in the state of Connecticut.