Seattle police officer Marie Gochnour agreed to a plea deal last week. The police officer faced a year in prison, but as part of the plea deal was sentenced to only two days in jail with 362 days suspended, reports MyNorthwest.com.
Last year, Gochnour and fellow police officer Sean Moore were arrested after getting into a crash. The two officers were off duty at the time when their vehicle struck a pole in Seattle. The circumstances of the arrest were bizarre as Gochnour was reportedly driving but stopped the car and switched seats in the middle of the road with Moore in an attempt to fool the responding officers.
The ruse was to no avail. Not only did it not fool authorities, but both Gochnour and Moore were drunk at the time. Gochnour tested for about three times the legal limit with a 0.234 blood alcohol level. Moore tested for about twice the legal limit with a 0.161 reading. Compounding matters, Gochnour was alleged to have been combative following the arrest.
Gouchner and Moore were charged with misdemeanor DUIs. However, Gochnour was able to plead down to a reduced charge as prosecutors ran into trouble proving their case and locating witnesses. Moore's DUI case is scheduled for September.
The case of this Seattle police officer should be a reminder to all DUI suspects that you are innocent until proven guilty. Even with a high blood alcohol test result, prosecutors still have the burden of proving their case. This can involve gathering additional evidence and talking to witnesses.
An experienced Seattle DUI attorney can explain to you that prosecutors have a high burden to meet to prove your guilt. As your advocate, your attorney can establish your defenses and even negotiate with prosecutors to minimize the charges you face.
If you are charged with a DUI in the Seattle or King County areas, contact the DUI attorneys at Wolff Criminal Defense. We understand the importance of fighting your DUI criminal charges and will ensure that you don't fight your fight alone. Contact the recognized leaders in DUI defense in Seattle, Bellevue, Kirkland and Redmond by calling 425-284-2000.