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DUI Case Highlights from Paul Burglin San Francisco DUI Attorney - People v. Gaytan

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Some interesting cases relating to common California DUI defense issues have been published in the past few months. Some, such as the People v. Gaytan case below, are binding legal precedents that California courts must follow in drunk driving cases. Out-of-state decisions from state appellate courts are not binding on California Courts, but they are often looked to as persuasive precedent by trial judges presiding over DUI motions to suppress evidence and trial.

This is why it is important to have a Board-Certified DUI defense attorney in your corner who keeps abreast of these decisions, as they may impact your case.

People v. Gaytan (IL - Court of Appeal, Dist. 4) May 13, 2013 – Docket No. 4–12–0217)

The IL statute at issue provides that the “registration plate shall at all times be free from any materials that would obstruct the visibility of the plate, including, but not limited to, glass covers and plastic covers."

The last phrase of the statute led the Court to conclude that a trailer ball hitch - since it is not an item physically attached to the license plate - is not the type of obstruction that constitutes a violation of the statute (employing the doctrine ejusdem generic ).

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