On November 15, 2018, Attorney Marc Lopez spoke at the Indiana Continuing Legal Education Forum’s (ICLEF) 2018 DWI at Trial  legal conference. In Indiana, practicing lawyers are required to attend several hours of continuing legal education seminars on a yearly basis. ICLEF is a leader in this field, and its annual DWI at Trial conference is the absolute premier legal education symposium of its kind in Indiana. Whether you’re a seasoned veteran or a relative newcomer to DUI / OVWI law, this seminar will have something to teach you about everyone’s favorite strict liability crime.

Attorney Marc Lopez’s presentation was called Developing the Theory of the Case, and it was about putting that theory to work in jury selection, opening statements, and closing arguments. The theory of the case basically refers to the story that you’ll be presenting to the judge or jury—a simple model that will explain what happened and why you’re entitled to a favorable verdict. This can be challenging in a DUI / OVWI case, because there are typically two separate charges: (1) operating a vehicle while intoxicated; and (2) operating a vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration above the legal limit.  

Here’s the thing with DUI / OVWI cases: Evidence of guilt on either charge supports a conviction on both counts, and the same can’t be said for evidence of innocence. In other words, if your attorney is able to get the certified chemical test results excluded at trial, that will only take care of the BAC-specific charge. Even without a test that demonstrates the amount of booze in your system, the state can still convict you of regular, old operating a vehicle while intoxicated. This is one of the main reasons that DUI / OVWI cases are more complex than you’d think.

Attorney Marc Lopez’s lecture was about applying your theory of the case consistently throughout the process—starting with jury selection, continuing through opening statements, and concluding with closing arguments—and he was able to accentuate his presentation with real-life examples from cases he has successfully defended. Sharing a bit of knowledge and experience with his colleagues was the highlight of Attorney Lopez’s week. He knows that whenever your professional peers are interested in what you have to say, it’s a sign you’re doing something right. If you or a loved one is facing DUI / OVWI charges in the Hoosier State, you owe it to yourself to speak with Attorney Marc Lopez. Give him a call at 317-632-3642.

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