Roadside Drug Testing

Roadside Drug TestingRoadside Drug Testing:

In 2016, Governor Snyder signed the Barbara J. and Thomas J. Swift Law.  This new law stems from a fatal car accident that occurred on Mar 20, 2013 in Escanaba.  A man, driving a logging truck, ran a red light and crashed into Thomas and Barbara Swift’s car.  Thomas was killed instantly and Barbara died three days later.  The man tested positive for THC, an ingredient in marijuana.  He is now serving 5 – 15 years for reckless driving and driving under the influence of drugs causing a death.

This new law will allow/”require” preliminary roadside drug testing.  It will initiate a yearlong pilot program in five counties across Michigan, which is believed to start sometime this year.  Under this new law, certified drug recognition experts, who have probable cause to believe that the driver is under the influence of drugs, are allowed to take a mouth swab.  If you refuse the mouth swab, you could be charged with a civil infraction or, if you are a commercial driver, a misdemeanor.  The mouth swab would then be inserted into a machine that can detect if cannabis, cocaine, methamphetamines, and opiates are present in the sample of saliva.  This saliva sample could potentially show the presence of drugs hours before it would be detected in urine samples.  This new system would be somewhat similar to police officers conducting a breathalyzer test on someone they have reasonable cause to believe is intoxicated.

Driving while under the influence of drugs is a growing epidemic.  The Michigan State Police publishes statistics involving crashes related to drugs.  In 2006 there were 1,581 crashes involving drugs, and in 2015 the amount of crashes rose to 2,215.  This shows that there has been a 40% increase in the amount of car crashes due to drugs.  In Michigan, drivers under the influence of drugs now cause almost as many traffic deaths per year as drunk drivers.  According to the Michigan State Police statistics, in 2016, drugged drivers caused 127 crashes that killed 141 people and drunk drivers caused 165 crashes and killed 176 people.  Over the past decade, the amount of fatal drunk driving crashes has decreased by 36%, while those caused by drugged drivers has increased 263%.  Although, the amount of fatal drugged driving crashes has not surpassed the amount of drunken driving crashes, it is believed to be too attributed to the lack of drug testing.  Drivers are not normally tested for drugs on the scene of an accident/traffic stops.  This new law is going to make drug testing more readily available.

A 2014 National Survey on Drug Use and Health reported that 10 million people admitted to driving under the influence of illicit drugs during the prior year.  The survey also showed that men were more likely than women to drive under the influence of drugs, and that people between the ages of 18 -25 were more likely to drive after taking drugs.  A study by the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute looked at the times of traffic crashes from 2011-2015.  They found that crashes caused by drunk drivers were more concentrated, usually at night and on weekends, and drivers impaired by drugs had no pattern and were spread evenly throughout the week.

In Michigan, it is illegal to drive while intoxicated, or impaired, by alcohol, illegal drugs, and some prescription medications.  Michigan is a zero-tolerance state.  This means that anyone can be prosecuted for any amount of cocaine or Schedule 1 drugs in their system.  Someone who has taken legally prescribed drugs may also be prosecuted if an officer believes that they were impaired while driving due to their medication.  It is unknown how this new program will affect medical marijuana users, as marijuana can be detected hours or days later.

Don’t take a risk on your rights—call one of our Troy Michigan Criminal Defense Attorneys at (248) 398-7100  for a free consultation or contact us with a private message, we can help you get answer, figure out a plan of attack, and execute. Get the results you need.

Operating While Visibly Impaired:

(OWVI) means that because of alcohol or other drugs, your ability to operate a motor vehicle was visibly impaired.

Operating While Intoxicated:

(OWI) includes 3 types of violations:

  • Alcohol or drugs in your body substantially affected your ability to operate a motor vehicle safely.
  • A bodily alcohol content (BAC) at or above 0.08. This level can be determined through a chemical test.
  • High BAC means the alcohol level in your body was at or above 0.17. This level can be determined through a chemical test.
Operating With Any Presence of a Schedule 1 Drug or Cocaine:

(OWPD) means having even a small trace of these drugs in your body, even if you do not appear to be intoxicated or impaired. This can be determined through a chemical test.

Under Age 21 Operating With Any Bodily Alcohol Content:

(Zero Tolerance) means having a BAC of 0.02 to 0.07, or any presence of alcohol in your body other than alcohol that is consumed at a generally recognized religious ceremony.

Don’t take a risk on your rights—call one of our Troy Michigan Criminal Defense Attorneys at (248) 398-7100  for a free consultation or contact us with a private message, we can help you get answer, figure out a plan of attack, and execute. Get the results you need.


New Michigan Gun Law

Michigan could soon have new gun laws:

The residents of Michigan could soon be able to carry a concealed pistol without a permit or completing any gun safety training.

On May 30, 2017, the Michigan House Panel approved, in a 6-4 vote, a package that would basically get rid of the concealed weapons law.  The bill still needs to be approved by the full House, the Senate, and Governor Rick Snyder before it can become law.

If this bill becomes the law, it would do away with criminal penalties for people who carry concealed weapons without a permit.  Currently, to carry a concealed weapon in Michigan, one must pay $100 for a permit application and fingerprint fee, $115 to renew the permit every four years, and a couple hundred for a gun training class.

Those in support of the bill argue that the concealed weapons permit is essentially a “coat tax” because that gun owner wishes to wear their coat over their gun instead of wearing it openly on their hip.  Supporters also argue that no permit or gun training is required for those who openly carry a firearm, so there should not be such a requirement for those who choose to conceal their firearm.

Those who oppose the bill believe that Michigan would be less safe.  Opponents are especially concerned because the bill would allow people with certain misdemeanor convictions to carry concealed weapons who are not currently able to receive a permit to do so.

For more information or to retain Garmo & Kiste, PLC call us at (248) 398-7100 for a free consultation or contact us with a private message.


Michigan’s New MIP Law

Michigan's New MIP LawMichigan’s New MIP Law to take effect in 2018:

Governor Snyder signed Michigan’s New MIP Law in 2016, it will reduce penalties for minors who purchase, consume, or are in possession of alcohol.  Starting January 1, 2018, first time offenders of the Minor in Possession (MIP) law will be guilty of a civil infraction instead of a misdemeanor. There will no longer be any threat of a first offense landing on a young adult’s record. When the law takes effect they will instead pay a fine. Even though the first offense is reduced, it should still be taken seriously due to the long lasting effects and the possibility of future violations.

First time offenders could be fined $100.00, ordered to participate in substance use disorder services, undergo substance abuse screening, and perform community service.  If the minor is charged with a second MIP, the offense increases to a misdemeanor.  This means that if a minor receives a second MIP charge, it is a criminal offense.  If charged with a misdemeanor, the minor could face up to 30 days in jail and be charged $200.00.  Again, the minor could be ordered to participate in substance use disorder services, undergo substance abuse screening, and perform community service.  If the minor has violated the MIP law more than 2 times, he/she can face up to 60 days in jail and be charged $500.00.  The minor can be ordered to participate in substance use disorder services, undergo substance abuse screening, and perform community service.  After a second or third violation, the minor’s licenses can be suspended.

Concerned about Michigan’s New MIP Law? Thousands of minors are charged with MIP violations every year.  For more information about the Michigan Minor in Possession (MIP) law and how to protect yourself, call us at (248) 398-7100 for a free consultation or contact us with a private message.


Tailgating Misdemeanor Tickets

Tailgating Misdemeanor Tickets

Tailgating Misdemeanor Tickets

College Football Season: Tailgating Misdemeanor Tickets

The college football season has started and with that students are being ticketed while tailgating.  Whether you’re studying at Wayne State University, Michigan State University, the University of Michigan or another Michigan college, these tickets are very common but they should be taken seriously.  Even a single conviction on your record can have an impact on your future employment and educational opportunities.

Individuals may be charged with Tailgating Misdemeanor Tickets due to tailgating activities including Minor in Possession of Alcohol, open intox, assault, and Urinating in Public.  One of the most common is Minor in Possession of Alcohol.   The exact crime you are charged with depends on the location you are when you are ticketed but all have serious consequences including fines and possible jail time.

Civil infraction tickets may also be handed out for handling open containers of alcohol.  Open bottles and cans of alcohol are sometimes permitted on certain campuses during football games, however if you step off of campus or have an open container other than on game day, you may be written a ticket.  It is important to know the rules in your area because, even though civil infraction tickets are typically not associated with jail time, tickets for handling an open container of alcohol can be costly.

If you have been written a ticket while tailgating,

Charged with a Tailgating Misdemeanor Tickets: Don’t take a risk on your rights—call one of our criminal defense attorneys at (248) 398-7100  for a free consultation or contact us with a private message, we can help you put this in your past quickly, so you can move on with your life.

For information about specific charges see the links below:


People v Rea: Drunk Driving Updates with Troy Michigan Expert DUI Attorneys

People v Rea: Drunk Driving Updates with Troy Michigan Expert DUI

People v Rea: Drunk Driving Updates with Troy Michigan Expert DUI

People v Rea: Drunk Driving Updates with Troy Michigan Expert DUI

Attorneys Recently the Michigan Court of Appeals heard a case involving an individual charged with operating while intoxicated after he drove drunk on his driveway.   In People v Gino Robert Rea, the court determined that the charges of operating while intoxicated pursuant to MCL 257.625 should be dismissed because the defendant was not operating his vehicle in an area generally accessible to motor vehicles.

The court relied heavily on the facts of this case which were that a police officer responding to a neighbor’s complaint watched the defendant back his car out of his detached garage about 25 feet before stopping next to his house.  He then pulled his car back up into his garage and was arrested when he was walking back to his home.  His driveway is quite long and the officer admitted that defendant did not pull the car out past the front of his home at any point.

The relevant language of the drunk driving law is as follows, “A… person shall not operate a vehicle upon a highway or other place open to the general public or generally accessible to motor vehicles, including an area designated for the parking of vehicles…if the person is operating while intoxicated.”

The court found that the defendant’s actions in this case did not violate this statute as the upper portion of the Defendant’s private driveway is not an area that is “generally accessible to motor vehicles”.  Rather, this area of a driveway is a place that is only accessible to a small group of vehicles: namely the homeowner or his or her guests.

Importantly, the court noted that another set of facts could yield a different outcome.  Specifically, the court postulated that the bottom of a private driveway may be an area that qualifies as a “place open to the general public” or a place “generally accessible to motor vehicles.”  Therefore, someone driving on the bottom portion of the driveway near the road could possibly be charged with operating while intoxicated.

Overall, this case stands for the idea that the area at the top of the driveway is not an area that is open to the general public or generally accessible to motor vehicles so homeowners driving in this area cannot be charged with operating while intoxicated.  However, the question of whether the area at the bottom of the driveway is open to the general public has not been decided.  Homeowners should take care to avoid driving at all when under the influence of alcohol, including on the area at the bottom of the driveway.

If you have been charged with operating while intoxicated or “drunk driving”, contact the Troy Michigan Expert DUI Attorneys of Garmo & Kiste, PLC at (248) 398-7100 for a free consultation or contact us with a private message.   This is an intricate area of law and it is best to consult with experienced attorneys such as ours to ensure your case is handled properly.

For information about specific charges see the links below:


Probation Violation Attorney Troy: Do Not Waste a Second Chance by Violating Your Probation

Probation Violation Attorney Troy

Violating Your Probation:

When granted probation after being convicted of a crime, you have to adhere to a set of strict rules. In comparison to going to jail, these rules are not that bad. Violating any of these rules can lead to sever consequences. Squandering your second chance will inevitably lead you to the sentence you so luckily avoided. More often than not, it is the simplest of rules that are broken. Here we have a breakdown of the stipulations that are usually found in probation.

Looking for a Probation Violation Attorney Troy Call us at (248) 398-7100  for a free consultation or contact us with a private message.

What is Probation?

Every state has specific rules about probation but generally it is a punishment for committing a crime that allows you to spend less time in jail or avoid it all together. In exchange, there are certain restrictions placed upon you. Some common rules are:

  • Regular meetings with your probation officer.
  • Counseling if the crime you committed was drug, alcohol, or anger related.
  • Random drug testing.
  • Staying in a specific area, in some cases wearing a monitoring device (aka. House Arrest).
  • Perform mandatory community service.
  • Avoid association with other known criminals.

Normally, probation is awarded to first-time offender or misdemeanor crimes.Violation and Consequences

There are two types of violations that can occur, technical and new offenses. Both are considered a continuation of the case you were convicted of.

Examples of technical violations are:

  • Skipping a meeting with your probation officer.
  • Failing a drug test.
  • Associating with known criminals.
  • Failure to perform your community service or paying a fine.

Your probation officer will handle any of these violations. Initially, you may only receive a warning for breaking the terms of your probation. Repetition and more serious offense may lead to a hearing where the judge can set a punishment. That punishment varies on the severity of the violation can be lead to an extension of your probation, paying a fine, or jail time.

Probation Violation Attorney Troy:

Probation Violation Attorney Troy: Do not despair if you are facing a hearing for violating your probation. At Garmo & Kiste, we have experienced lawyers who can aid you during the process.  We can help clear up any discrepancies and work with the court system to garner the best outcome possible. We offer free consultations for first time clients.

Only the best Michigan probation violation defense lawyers can help you avoid jail. Call our Probation Violation Attorneys  at (248) 398-7100  for a free consultation or contact us with a private message.


The Case of the Vanishing Assets: Embezzlement


Embezzlement is the act of dishonestly withholding assets for the purpose of theft. More specifically, embezzlement is financial fraud, an example of this would be a financial advisor who embezzle the funds of his investors. The act of embezzlement is normally a premeditated act that is methodically performed since the embezzler needs to cover their tracks. In order to remain undetected, embezzlers might take small sums throughout the years. While embezzlement can be seen as a clear-cut case, the act of embezzlement can be broken down.

Breaking Down the Crime

In the U.S., embezzlement is a statutory offense and the definition of the crime of embezzlement varies according to the given statue. The criminal elements of embezzlement can range from fraudulent to Lawful possession. Here is the breakdown of each element:

  • Fraudulence– This requires that the embezzler willfully, and without claim of right or mistake, converted the entrusted property to his or her own use.
  • Criminal Conversion– Embezzlement is a crime against ownership, such as voiding the right of the owner to control the disposition and use of the property entrusted to them. Criminal conversion requires substantial interference with the property rights of the owner.
  • Property– Embezzlement statues are written so that they do not limit the scope of the crime to conversions of personal property. The statues also include the conversion of tangible personal property, intangible personal property and choses in action. The exception is real property not being included, such as real estate or realty of any kind.
  • Of Another– The embezzler does not have to be a second or third party individual(s). A person can also embezzle their own property. Reasons might include to hiding money from the government for tax reasons or giving money to an ex during divorce proceedings.
  • Lawful Possession– A key element in an embezzlement case is that the embezzler had been in lawful possession of the property during the time of the fraudulent conversion. This helps differentiate the case from larceny, since larceny is if the thief merely had custody of the property.

Troy Embezzlement Lawyer

Entrusting your property to someone else should not mean that it gets stolen out from under you. If you have had your assets embezzled then it is time to hire a lawyer. At Garmo & Kiste, we have lawyers experienced in embezzlement cases to make sure you get the justice you deserve. For a free consultation, contact us at (248)398-7100.


MIP Michigan

  Keep a Minor in Possession charge off your record.MIP Michigan: There Is Nothing Minor About a Minor in Possession.

One of the most common criminal offenses committed by university students is a minor in possession of alcohol (MIP). While many students believe this is “no big deal” and that many of their friends have been in their same position, handling a minor in possession charge in the wrong way can have lifelong effects on your criminal record, and even your career.

Under Michigan Liquor Control Code 436.1703, a minor shall not purchase or attempt to purchase alcoholic liquor, consume or attempt to consume alcoholic liquor, possess or attempt to possess alcoholic liquor, or have any bodily alcohol content.

A violation of this results in a misdemeanor, along with which there are fines, and a permanent mark on your record.

The penalty for a Minor in Possession may not seem harsh to you as a college student, but a permanent blotch on your criminal record can likely have serious consequences once one leaves university and enters the job market. In today’s economy, hiring employers are looking for any little attribute to separate job candidates from one another. Most commonly, they will accomplish this by doing a criminal background check. A small blotch on your record can be the difference between landing that job you’ve worked so hard through college for.

The potential long lasting consequences on students convicted of Minor in Possession are so burdensome that they have even caught the attention of those in Lansing. State Senator Rick Jones is sponsoring Senate Bill 332, which would change the penalty for Minor in Possession by keeping the fines but removing the threat of jail time or a permanent criminal record. The bill has received some support in Lansing as many believe current penalties are just too damaging to those convicted. This is certainly Jones’ motivation for sponsoring the bill, as he stated “Young people have found that having a misdemeanor on their record prevents them from getting college scholarships, sometimes getting into college, and certainly it affects future job prospects.”

While legislators are trying to lessen the harsh penalties assessed to those convicted of a Minor in Possession, they have yet been unsuccessful, and current rules are still in effect. It is vital to those who have been charged with a Minor in Possession to seek an experience criminal defense attorney to reduce the risk of life-long consequences.

Call our Minor in Possession Attorneys

If you have been charged with Minor in Possession of Alcohol and are a student, contact the Minor In Possession of Alcohol Metro Detroit Lawyers at Garmo & Kiste, PLC at (248) 398-7100 for a free consultation or contact us with a private message.. As alumni of Wayne State University Law School, we know the value of a good education and know how important it is to start your career off right. We have all of the tools needed to minimize the negative impact of the charges you received and we bring years of experience and individualized attention to every case we handle.


Caught in a Compromising Position: Prostitution Laws in Michigan

What Constitutes Prostitution?

The practice of engaging in sexual relations in exchange for payment or some other means which benefits you, is illegal in the state of Michigan. The law prohibits both the practice and participation of the act. Which is why many who do practice it tend to do so in secret, but there are times when police catch wind of such activity and go undercover to catch individuals. Here is what you need to know were you caught in such a compromising position. 

Prostitution Laws

There are specific laws when it comes to prostitution. In Michigan, they include several that include those aiding and abetting prostitutes. Here are a few of them:

  • 750.448- A person of 16 years of age or older who accosts, solicits, or invites another individual in a public place, building, or vehicle to commit prostitution or a lewd act is a punishable crime.
  • 750.449- A person 16 years of age or older who receives or offers to admit a person into a place, structure, or vehicle for the purpose of prostitution can also be convicted of a crime.
  • 750.449a-A male person who engages or offers to engage a female person, that is not his partner or wife, for prostitution or a lewd act in exchange for payment, be it money or other compensation, can be convicted of a crime.
  • 750.450- A person 16 years of age or older who aids, assists, or abets another person to commit and act prohibited by the above mentioned laws is also subjected to punishment.

Repercussions of Engaging in Prostitution

A person convicted of violating these laws and are guilty of a misdemeanor are punishable by imprisonment a maximum of 93 days and/or a fine of $500.
A person 16 years of age or older, who also has 1 prior conviction, and is found guilty of a misdemeanor can be punished with imprisonment of 1 year and/or a fine of $1,000.
If you have 2 or more prior convictions, violating the above laws can be punished with up to 2 years in prison and/or a fine of $2,000. 

Detroit Prostitution Lawyer

If you are caught in violation of any of these laws, it would be in your best interest to hire legal representation. At Garmo & Kiste PLC, we are experienced in cases that involve violations of Michigan’s prostitution laws. Do not let your freedom go to chance, contact us at (248)398-7100 for a free consultation.


Why You Need a Criminal Defense

Criminal Conviction

Being sentenced with criminal charges can lead you on a roller coaster of emotions. It is a stressful time filled with anxiety and can be scary. Hiring a criminal defense attorney can ease your panic by guiding you through the ordeal. When facing serious issues such as jail time, an experienced attorney can work their magic to minimize sentencing or garner a plea deal.

Reduce Sentencing

To reduce a sentence, your defense lawyer must negotiate a deal or plea bargain with the prosecutor.  In most cases, not only will these deals reduce the sentence but may eliminate some of the charges brought against you. If the court were to find you guilty, a defense attorney is equipped to negotiate lesser time or offer a rehabilitation center as an alternative. Throughout your case, your attorney will advise you the best routes to take when negotiating your deal.

Navigating Your Case

While a defense attorney is not a therapist, they can reduce the anxiety that comes with facing a criminal trial. They do so by going over the realities and legalities of your case.  They will also go over court rules and regulations. You can feel secure knowing that their experience enables them to navigate the system with ease. They are also well-verses in unspoken rules that can help reduce your sentence.
Your defense attorney is able to expertly handle the evidence and eyewitness statements for your case. They can procure everything necessary to build your case. Witnesses even respond much more positively to a lawyer than by speaking openly.

Macomb County Criminal Attorney

You always have the right to properly defend yourself and doing so during a criminal case is of the upmost importance. Prosecutors and city attorneys are often willing to negotiate a deal. Residents of Macomb County have the attorneys at Garmo & Kiste at their disposal. Our attorneys are well-versed in cases pertaining to your criminal defense. Do not risk your rights and contact one of our attorneys at (248)398-7100.

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