Police arrest man at Eagan fast food joint for felony DWI

Police in Lakeville, Minnesota say that the manager of a Cedar Avenue fast-food restaurant called to report a driver sleeping at the wheel in the restaurant’s drive-thru lane. The man apparently had ordered food and police claim that he took a nap while waiting for his order. Restaurant workers claim that the staff was able to awaken the man and he pulled forward to clear the drive-thru.

Police, however, claim that when officers arrived, law enforcement did not have such luck in rousing the man slumped over the steering wheel. The Farmington, Minnesota man was ultimately arrested and charged with felony drunk driving.

Dakota County authorities claim that police had difficulty awakening the driver at the restaurant. Officials also allege that the man fell back to sleep while speaking with law enforcement. During the police investigation, officers claim to have seized a syringe containing liquid from the driver’s side of the passenger compartment, although it is not clear from a news report what led to the search of the vehicle nor is it clear how police discovered the alleged item.

Prosecutors claim that the man has prior DWI convictions dating back to 2005 and that his license has been cancelled as inimical to public safety. The man now faces felony DWI and gross misdemeanor DAC-IPS charges in Dakota County. Police claim that the driver consented to submitting a blood sample during the DWI investigation.

Felony DWI charges carry significant potential penalties in the criminal case, as well as administrative issues related to a person’s privilege to drive and ownership of the vehicle used during commission of the alleged offense. A person has the right to an attorney in the criminal case, but may also choose to hire a lawyer to defend in the administrative proceedings.

The timeline to challenge administrative runs out quickly and a person accused of DWI must perfect a challenge to the administrative issues as soon as possible to retain the ability to challenge any DWI license revocation or vehicle forfeiture in civil court.

Source: Lakeville Patch, “Man Reportedly Falls Asleep in Lakeville Drive-Thru Lane,” Michael Garlitz, April 30, 2013

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.

What to Do If You Have Been Charged with a Criminal Offense

Involve a criminal appeal attorney soon after you learn the prosecution is appealing your sentence. Your attorney will walk you through the involving and confusing sentencing guidelines. An attorney's involvement will also help you develop a defense strategy for the appeal.