Buting ,Williams & Stilling ,S.C. | A Criminal Defense Law Firm

Call Today for a FREE Consultation


Wisconsin woman fights bogus drunk driving charges for 10 months

by | May 9, 2014 | Drunk Driving

Although most law enforcement officers tend to be honest and well-intentioned, the sad reality is that some abuse their power and take undue advantage of the credibility that comes with their badge. This appears to be what happened in the case of a young Wisconsin woman whose car was struck by a Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Deputy.

The accident proved to be the deputy’s fault, but the woman was nonetheless arrested on suspicion of drunk driving. Despite the fact that blood tests showed no alcohol or drugs in her system, several criminal charges including OWI were pending for nearly a year before the case was resolved. It now appears as though the sheriff’s deputy was trying to cover up his own mistakes and that the sheriff’s office seemingly acted in collusion.

The car accident happened in February 2013 near General Mitchell International Airport. Surveillance video footage from the airport shows that the deputy made a rolling stop at a stop sign before causing a T-bone collision into the side of the young woman’s car. The crash broke her neck in four places.

The deputy would later file a report saying that he had made a complete stop and that the young woman had caused the crash. This seemingly went unquestioned for months even though the Sheriff’s Office learned of the security video two days after the accident.

She was arrested and blood samples were taken. Lab results showed no alcohol or drugs in her system. Five months after the incident, a prosecutor declined to file charges but no one told the woman. The County even sent letters demanding that she pay for the crash damage because she was allegedly at fault.

When finally confronted with evidence of the video about 10 months after the fact, the deputy changed his story and admitted he had caused the accident. He never suffered any disciplinary action related to the inaccurate report.

The young woman no longer has any pending criminal charges, but her medical bills related to the crash could exceed $1 million. She may decide to pursue a lawsuit against the County for violation of her civil rights.

Many people assume that they have nothing to fear from law enforcement if they didn’t do anything wrong. As this case demonstrates, that logic does not always hold true. That’s why anyone facing criminal charges needs the help and advocacy of an experienced criminal defense attorney.

Source: Fox 6 Now, “Sober driver arrested for OWI when deputy crashes into her car,” Stephen Davis and Bryan Polcyn, May 2, 2014

Practice Areas

“I just want to say thank you for the outstanding work you have done for him and let you know how much we appreciate the time and attention you gave to his case. We are obviously overjoyed by today’s dismissal!” (Child pornography case dismissed after motion to suppress was granted)”

“After having had time to exhale, we thank each one of you and all the others who contributed to the exemplary Supreme Court presentation. We are proud of your efforts on our behalf and, equally important, on behalf of the many present and future defendants statewide.” (Client’s comment after Supreme Court oral argument)

“Thank you. Thank you. I am so pleased to hear that we won. It doesn’t seem that it was even a close call. I appreciate your efforts.” (Oconto County defendant after Buting, Williams & Stilling got his prison sentence overturned in the court of appeals) ”

“Your time and advice was appreciated more than words can express at a time when we really needed someone to guide us.” (Client)

“The outcome was amazing, one unavailable even under identical circumstances in probably 98 percent of federal courtrooms around the country. Separate and apart from the outcome, though, I am supremely impressed by your efforts on your client’s behalf. Your comments in support of the requested sentence were perfect in tone and, having now reviewed the extensive sentencing memorandum you filed, your work in that regard was exemplary as well. Your client was certainly fortunate to have you as his attorney.” (Local federal court attorney present at a sentencing)

“I can’t thank you enough, not only for all of the tireless work that you and your staff put into my case, but for telling me what I needed to hear, at a time when I absolutely had to hear it. I consider myself blessed for everything turning out the way it did, especially since I blindly picked you out of a phone book! You helped me, my family and friends in many more ways than the money ever could.” (Child pornography client)

“I think you will find that in any circles where Kathy’s name is raised, people will always respond positively and identify her as an extremely hardworking, knowledgeable and ethical lawyer who is timely and effective with any endeavor she takes on. These circles would include colleagues, friends, prosecutors, judges, professors and others who have crossed paths with Kathy. They would also include the many lawyers like me who have referred numerous cases to Kathy, invariably with positive feedback from the clients regarding her knowledge of their case, empathy, professionalism and fair-mindedness in addressing their concerns.” (Fellow attorney)

“Thank you for giving [our son] back to us. Wonderful work!” (Family of client accused of armed robbery after charges were dismissed)

“Yes, His perfect time and perfect place, you were a part of this plan. I almost didn’t hire you, but I took a step of faith trusting Him and look what happened? Praise God. Our Lord put you in your vocation for a reason, continue to help those He brings your way. May He bless you in ALL you do!” (Client who was wrongfully convicted of sexual assault in a northwestern Wisconsin county. He was released from prison after attorneys got his conviction reversed.)

“I really cannot thank you enough for your past help. You really know your stuff. It is actually funny when I think about my other past attorney’s knowledge and then when I talk with you. It’s like night and day. You’re like a walking book of knowledge with a purpose-driven life. Thanks.” (Brown County client of attorney Buting)

“A year later and I still believe your defense is the single best example of lawyering I have ever seen.” (Television reporter commenting on attorney Buting’s defense of Steven Avery)

“You have a certain brilliance that makes me sure that when you talk, it is good information and I am in good hands. You tell it to me like it is even when the things you say are not always the things that I would like to hear. You keep it REAL!!!” (Brown County client)

“Thank you, thank you, thank you! I feel like this was one of the biggest blessings that happened in my life. I put this along with my children being born healthy and when I survived that horrific shooting. I appreciate everything you have done for me. I couldn’t ask for better lawyers. I want to say thank you to everybody at your firm. I owe you more than the fee you so rightfully deserve. … You gave me back hope. Thank you, man! Out of my 36 years … I have never seen such kindness before. I don’t know what I did to deserve this; I’m very thankful nonetheless. Thank you for giving me hope again. Thank you for your generosity. There are still some really good people around.” (Federal criminal appeal client)

“There is no other attorney I’ve ever even heard of I’d rather have as chief counsel and leader of my defense/appeals than Jerome Buting. You’re the best. Period.” (Dane County client)

“Your advice and counsel were greatly appreciated. We appreciate you taking the time on your Sunday and evenings to help us. We are SO happy about the results! Thanks again.” (Waukesha County client)

“Thank you again … for everything. Five and one-half years of commitment, so many ups and downs and an outcome like that. You did a GREAT job.” (Waukesha County felony drug offense client)