In late 2009 a driver was arrested for DUI in San Francisco after crashing into a guard rail on I80 Eastbound. The San Francisco District Attorney waited almost six months to decide to charge the driver with driving under the influence and driving with a .08 or greater blood alcohol level.
After his arrest the driver submitted to a breath test to determine his blood alcohol level. The machine that he blew into required multiple blows and showed several errors related to alcohol being present in the ambient error. Eventually the diver blew a .12, .13 and a .14.
Attorney John Stanko appeared in court for the driver and entered a plea of not guilty. After thoroughly reviewing the police reports and discovery related to the maintenance and calibration of the breath machine Mr. Stanko appeared at a pre-trial conference. After pointing out the weaknesses in the District Attorney’s case, including the problems with the breath testing equipment, he was able to convince the District Attorney to dismiss the DUI charges against the driver and agree to a plea of no contest to a Dry Reckless.
A Dry Reckless charge is a non alcohol related reckless driving charge and a conviction for it carries substantially less punishment than a conviction for drunk driving. Further, because a Dry Reckless is not alcohol related it is not a priorable offense and if the driver picks up a DUI in the future the Dry Reckless cannot be used against him.