Minnesota Felony DWI or Gross Misdemeanor DWI–Part II

If you are facing Minnesota felony DWI charges, then if convicted you may be un-employable, and you will lose your right to vote and your gun rights.  If you are convicted of a Gross Misdemeanor 2nd Degree DWI or 3rd Degree DWI, you may go to jail for up to a year and/or be on probation for up to 6 years.  That’s why you need to call a Minnesota Felony DWI Criminal Defense Attorney ASAP.  If you’ve never been charged with a crime before, you may be curious as to what the typical procedures are for going to Court. In our last blog we discussed what happens up through your bail hearing or Rule 5 hearing; now we discuss Minnesota Omnibus Hearings.

Rule 8 Hearing:

Some jurisdictions combine a Rule 8 hearing with a Rule 5 hearing. Other jurisdictions do not. At a Rule 8 hearing, you will once again be advised of the charges against you, and your rights will be explained to you. At this Rule 8 hearing, you will be permitted to enter a plea of guilty or not guilty. If you choose to plead not guilty, you will proceed to an omnibus hearing or settlement conference.

Omnibus Hearing:

At the omnibus hearing, you will be able to contest the State’s evidence, if the evidence was possibly obtained in violation of your constitutional or statutory rights. This is your opportunity to ask the Judge to throw out or suppress the evidence against you.  Some jurisdictions first have an “uncontested omnibus hearing,” where you determine what issues you would like to contest. Other jurisdictions proceed from a Rule 8 hearing directly to a “contested omnibus hearing,” but require you to file a written motion within 30 days of the Rule 8 hearing in order to set a contested omnibus hearing.  It’s important that you have an attorney familiar with the County that you’re charged in, so that your attorney knows how to proceed.

Contested Omnibus Hearing:

Some jurisdictions will refer to the contested omnibus hearing as an “evidentiary hearing” or a “Rasmussen hearing.” For all intents and purposes, these are the same type of hearing.

If you have a contested omnibus hearing, the State will call witnesses to testify about why the evidence was not collected in violation of your constitutional rights, and you can cross examine them through your attorney.You will also be able to testify on your own behalf, if you choose to do so. Neither the State nor the Court can force you to testify.

Following the testimony, you will have an opportunity to argue why the evidence was collected in violation of your constitutional rights. Some Judges prefer arguments to be made orally immediately following the hearing, but most Judges will order you to submit a written brief summarizing your arguments. In tomorrow’s blog entry, we will examine Minnesota Settlement Conferences and Trials in Minnesota Gross Misdemeanor and Felony DWI cases.

He has won jury trial cases in misdemeanor and felony cases and in DWI’s and non-DWI’s. He is a member of the Minnesota Society for Criminal Justice, which only allows the top 50 criminal defense attorneys in the state as members. He is a frequent speaker at CLE’s and is often asked for advice by other defense attorneys across Minnesota.

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