In The News

Tuesday, February 28, 2012


By Michael Nichols
Categories: Drunk-Driving

State Representative Bob Genetski is exercising his right to retain full driving privileges even though a Michigan State University Department of Public Safety officer claims he refused an evidential breath test. “As reported on M-Live and in the Grand Rapids Press, Bob’s license has not been suspended. That is inaccurate,” says his attorney, Mike Nichols of East Lansing. Nichols adds: “I am limited in what I can say ethically because of the pending criminal matter. However, it is important to correct the public coverage.”

Nichols said that the hearing was continued after two and a half hours. Several matters remain pending including a motion to exclude the arresting officer’s testimony about his interpretation of standardized field sobriety tests. “The MLive reporter’s story on February 27, 2012 mistakenly stated that the objection was overruled. There is a two part motion pending. The first part is on the officer’s training. The second is on the interpretation of the tests and whether they were administered properly. The Hearing officer only found that the officer was trained sufficiently and overruled that motion.”

Nichols added that the case will be re-scheduled and the hearing was adjourned with Mr. Genetski’s case pending. Nichols may offer additional testimony. The hearing officer ruled that Mr. Nichols may attempt to subpoena missing audio recordings of the implied consent rights that the arresting officer claims he read to Mr. Genetski as well as Mr. Genetski’s refusal, because those recordings have disappeared or never existed. Often, the exchange in which an officer reads the implied consent rights to an arrested subject and the subject’s response are recorded at a jail or in the police car following an arrest.


An evidential test in Michigan is either a breath test on a datamaster or a blood test. It is different from a pre-arrest screening test cHalled a PBT. A refusal carries different consequences for each. If a person refuses an evidential breath test, an officer may submit a request for suspension to the secretary of state. The officer must then prove 4 things: 1. That he had reasonable grounds to stop the subject; 2. That the subject was validly arrested for a violation of the drunk driving statute; 3. That the officer read the implied consent rights to the person and 4. That the person unreasonably refused the chemical test. Nichols added: “those are the issues at this hearing.”

Mike Nichols can be reached at mnichols@nicholslaw.net

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Peer Recognition

Mike Nichols is a national leader in drunk driving defense. He is a member of the Forensic Committee and Michigan delegate to the National College for DUI Defense. He is also a Sustaining Member of the College. Nichols is also a founding member of the Michigan Association of OWI Attorneys; a member of the American Chemical Society; an associate member of he American Academy of Forensic Science, Adjunct Professor of Forensic Evidence in Criminal Law and OWI Law and Practice at Cooley Law School. He is also author of the West OWI Practice book and several chapters in other books on science and the law.

Mike Nichols is recognized by his peers in Michigan as a “SuperLawyer” in DUI/Criminal Defense. Nichols has also been asked to speak at conferences by groups such as the NCDD; Various Bar Associations in other states.