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Special Treatment for Rich DUI Defendant?

Posted by William Kirk, Partner | May 17, 2014 | 0 Comments

Ferrari-driver Shaun Goodman was arrested for a DUI earlier this year that involved him trying to outrun the cops, a passenger jumping out of the moving sports car, and Goodman eventually crashing into a house. This week, a Thurston County court sentenced Goodman to work release and protestors are now claiming that Goodman only received the lenient penalty because he's rich, reports KOMO News. Goodman's passenger who hopped out of the car fearing for his life is part of the protest.

The general concern is that Goodman received a relatively light penalty. With work release, the convict is allowed to leave prison or jail so that he can go to work and pretty much live as a non-convict would during work hours.

Protestors are also angry about the fact that while the DUI charge was pending, Goodman was allowed to leave the state so that he could attend the Super Bowl in New Jersey. One has to wonder whether someone who could only afford a 2000 Kia would have been afforded similar rights and leniency.

On the other hand, prosecutors stand by the penalties imposed. They point out that for 364 days, Goodman must return to his jail cell at night and on weekends. The 364-day sentence is in fact the longest penalty that Goodman could serve. Prosecutors also believe that Goodman will be less of a threat and more likely to remain sober if he was allowed to continue running the small communications company that he owns.

Contact a King County DUI Attorney

Many DUI cases do not make it to court. Instead, the defendant and prosecutor typically reach a plea deal. With a plea deal, the parties have more flexibility to shape a penalty that is just and acceptable to both sides. However, in negotiating with prosecutors, you will want an advocate on your side who will stand up for your interests. To learn more about plea deals and how an attorney can help, contact Cowan Kirk Gaston Wolff by calling 1-866-822-1230.

About the Author

William Kirk, Partner

Bill Kirk has been named a Super Lawyer by Washington Law and Politics Magazine every year since 2003. He currently serves on the Board of Regents to the National College for DUI Defense and is the President of the Washington Foundation for Criminal Justice. Bill is one of only two attorneys in this state to pass the National College's Board Certification Exam.

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