KPD, DAs, (non) DUIs,

I’m going to have to try and be delicate with this one…where to start?

First the background:  A Knox County Assistant District Attorney, Samyah Jubran, was done a favor by KPD Officer Hakan Dururvurur when he let her drive home even though he thought she was too impaired to do so after a traffic stop.  What the commenters over at the KNS seem to be hung up on is the idea that she was done this favor because of her position and that the same rules should apply to everyone.

Yeah, that’s true.  But that’s not the real problem here in my eyes.  People get breaks all the time for a whole array of reasons.  Maybe it’s because they are pretty.   Maybe because it is raining and the cop doesn’t want to pull them over because he doesn’t want to get out in it.  Maybe the cop is really trying to catch people with outstanding warrants, not traffic violations.  Maybe it’s because the people pulled over are just some fun-loving guys being towed down a street by a truck and a rope with smoke and sparks coming off their skis but not actually harming anyone.

When these people are private citizens, that’s one thing.  It may not be fair, but it’s not much worse than a nice lady at a convenience store giving you free coffee.  Thanks ladies.

The real problem is that this situation leaves the hint that (if not caught by the media) the prosecuter receiving the “favor” would have owed a favor back to the officer.  It’s not that he let her drive impaired.  That’s a separate issue.  He could have done something as simple as allowing her to park in a tow away zone or letting her into the back door of a concert whose door he was securing while moonlighting in his off hours.  Maybe this favor is expected to be returned when he has arrested someone he doesn’t like and the DA is riding the fence over whether or not to prosecute.  Maybe the return favor is a nudge toward prosecution.

I guess what I’m getting at is that we should be less concerned with the fact that the rules don’t apply to everone.  That is a fact.  It has always been that way.  But when you or I get a break, it’s just that–a break.  We should be more concerned with the fact that favors done amongst those inside the system can so easily pervert justice.

It’s not a fairness issue.  It’s an ethics issue.  And I’d bet it goes on way more than we’ll ever know.

**UPDATE**

KNS released the video today.  To be fair, I don’t think this officer did her much of a favor.  She didn’t look or sound drunk to me, and have seen and heard many a drunk in my day.  However, it still “looks” bad.

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Comments

Knoxville Police give some people special treatment and run an old-fashioned good ole boy system?…..I’m shocked. Every police department in the country works this way and a little bad press is not going to change it. The cop who didn’t turn the microphone off is probably the one that will get in trouble.

I just like how the KNS published a preChristmas party season guide book on how to conduct yourself during a DUI inspection. Use the officer’s name, tell the officer you understand their directions, do the sobreity test, start counting the steps after you get going, don’t let the officer’s “favor” lead you into incriminating yourself for hiding your victim in the trunk (thanks IV!), etc. Also, I can’t believe a seasoned prosecutor would use the one drink comment. Apparently that works too. Also, it will be great to see how this video is used by other defense attorneys when a client is prosecuted for a DUI.

@tlittle just ask yourself…what would Vic Mackey do?

@tch wouldn’t she have been better off to say that she’d just finished the drink before getting into the car? That would explain the officer smelling alcohol. I think the “counting the steps after you get going” was probably an audio/video sync issue. That happens on my in car camera all the time.

After reviewing the video I think the best thing to do is slip into your spike heeled boots just prior to the sobriety check and then blame your poor balance on that…

@Marty I couldn’t do that walk in rugby boots stone cold sober.

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