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The Lawyer’s Biography

I attended University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law, in Sacramento, California, graduating in 1978. I have practiced in Alaska and only in Alaska for 35 years.

While there, I received two American Jurisprudence awards for scholarship.

Upon graduation, I moved to Wrangell, Alaska, where I opened my own general practice of civil law and criminal defense.

In 1986, I moved to Juneau and opened my practice there. After a couple of years of general practice, I limited things to criminal defense only, handling many different types of criminal cases, from drug offenses to violent crimes, to DUIs/drunk drivings.

In 1996, after two years of working on it, I completed ‘Drunk Driving in Alaska,’ a cases and principles book on the subject.

From the beginning, I have defended what I estimate to be about 14-1500 drunk driving / DUI cases, along with many drug cases involving methamphetamine, marijuana, mushrooms, cocaine, heroin and other […]

Towns and Cities in which I practice

My criminal defense practice covers all of Alaska, from Unalaska in the Aleutians down to Prince of Wales Island, including

















North Pole







Types of Criminal Cases I Handle

Alaska Drunk Driving Attorney
DUI, misdemeanor and felony

Drug cases, misdemeanor and felony

Assault, misdemeanor and felony

Sexual abuse and sexual assault

Domestic violence


F & G violations

Theft, Burglary, Robbery, Criminal Trespass, Criminal Mischief

White collar crimes

All other criminal cases


My Philosophy About Drug Cases

I passionately believe that people should not be put into prison for possession or sales of drugs. There are, I suppose, exceptions, such as drug cases involving violence or sales of hard drugs to children. However, virtually all of my clients have been substance abusers or sellers/growers of marijuana.


It is my absolute belief that drugs should be legal and regulated; that substance abuse should be addressed through treatment, not prison.


For that reason, I put a great deal of time and energy into defending drug cases. As with all my cases, I cannot ethically make promises about results. Drug cases are prosecuted and punished hard in Alaska. But I have a passionate belief in defending drug cases.

Circumstantial Evidence

I am frequently told by clients arrested for DUI, ‘The police didn’t see me drive! I was inside my house when the came in and arrested me! They can’t convict me.’




If the police or a witness actually see a person driving under the influence, that is known as direct evidence.


However, a person can be convicted with circumstantial evidence. For example: If a police officer is in pursuit of a vehicle and loses sight of it for 10 seconds, then pulls up and sees a man standing beside the driver’s door, keys in hand … there is a logical inference that the man standing beside the vehicle was the driver.


Each case turns on its own facts, and there is no firm rule about whether circumstantial evidence will stand up or not. A good lawyer will examine circumstantial cases with a critical eye.

Sitting Behind the Wheel DUI

Alaska, like virtually all other states, criminalizes three ways you may be convicted for driving under the influence:


1. If you are actually driving;

2. If you are ‘operating’ a motor vehicle; or

3. If you are in ‘actual physical control’ of a motor vehicle.


The general public doesn’t realize that you may be convicted of DUI for sitting behind the wheel of a motor vehicle with the engine running. In fact, in one case, Conley, a woman was convicted for opening the door to her car, keys in hand, without starting the car. The court determined that her conduct was so dangerous as to constitute a DUI. [Just for comparison: If a person intended to rob a bank, stood on the steps to the bank, gun in hand but was apprehended before going inside, he might be convicted of attempted bank robbery but not an actual robbery. DUI is the exception to the rule, where there […]

More articles coming soon!

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Out of State Prior Convictions

Out of state convictions can be used to enhance a present Alaska convictions.


It is essential that your attorney investigate any out of state prior convictions. I have seen instances in which an attorney did not do so, and it had a huge negative impact on the case.


First, it is up to the State to provide proof of the out of state prior conviction. The State cannot simply rely on the NCIC rap sheet printout. By law, you have the right to make the State obtain authenticated copies of court records to prove the prior conviction. If the State does not, the conviction cannot be used.


Second, the out of state conviction must have been under a similar law to Alaska. Over the years, I have mounted many successful challenges to out of state prior convictions because of differences between Alaska law and the other states.



By |September 27th, 2013|DUI Answers|0 Comments

Refusal to Submit a Breath Sample

Alaska is one of only perhaps two states nationwide that criminalize refusal to submit a breath sample. In all other states, while you can lose your license administratively with DMV for refusing to provide a breath sample, it isn’t a crime.


In Alaska, the criminal penalties are the same as for DUI. In addition, you may not obtain a limited/unlimited license.


Refusal takes two forms: The intentional ‘I’m not going to give you a breath sample,’ and what I have termed ‘constructive refusal,’ when a person attempts to provide a sample but the police officer believes the person is faking it.



By |September 27th, 2013|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Priority: The DMV Administrative Hearing Request


I prefer to do this for my clients. If a request is not made within 7 days, you not only automatically lose your license with DMV, you forfeit the right to subpoena the police officer and cross examine him. I consider the DMV hearing to be a crucial part of the process.

When you either submitted a breath sample or refused to take the breath test, the police officer seized your drivers license. (Occasionally, for different reasons, they don’t.) He or she gave you a form entitled ‘Notice and Order of Revocation.’ This is your temporary license, and it spells out the necessity of requesting an administrative hearing.

The DMV hearing is completely separate and independent from the criminal court proceedings.


By |September 27th, 2013|DUI Answers|0 Comments