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Thread: Caffeine Bernard...arrested for driving under influence of caffeine

  1. #1

    Caffeine Bernard...arrested for driving under influence of caffeine

    Power tripping pigs.

    No. Really.

    Joseph Schwab was driving home from work in Solano County when he allegedly cut off an agent from the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control. Claiming Schwab was driving erratically, the officer pulled him over and gave him a breathalyzer test. The result turned up as 0.00%.

    Regardless, she arrested him and took him to jail where they decided to do a blood test to see if he was on anything else. Everything in the illegal column came back negative, but it did show that Schwab had some caffeine in him. With that, California police charged Schwab with a DUI.

    If you’re confused as to how police could charge Schwab with a DUI for being under the influence of a substance that is literally sold to keep drivers awake and alert, you’re not alone. Schwab’s attorney is just as perplexed.

    From The Guardian:

    “I’ve never seen this before; I’ve never even heard of it.” Stacey Barrett, Schwab’s attorney said.
    “I have not been provided with any evidence to support a theory of prosecution for a substance other than caffeine at this time. Nor I have received any statements, reports, etc documenting any ongoing investigation since the [toxicology report] dated 18 November 2015,” she added.

    “No one believed me that I only had caffeine in my system until I showed them the lab results. I want the charges to be dismissed and my name to be cleared,” Schwab said.
    She’s not the only one. Even one toxicologist thinks this might be beyond the pale.

    “It’s really stupid,” said Jeffrey Zehnder, a forensic toxicologist who frequently testifies in court cases. Over 41 years, Zehnder said, he had never seen a prosecution for driving under the influence of caffeine.

    “If that’s the case, then they better come and arrest me,” he joked.
    At this time, there are zero studies that say your driving is impaired by caffeine. In fact, it’s a drink of choice for many drivers looking for that extra boost of energy for a drive, including police officers. While this case is likely to fail, the fact that an officer went through so much trouble to find fault with a guy after cutting her off probably says more about the case than anything.
    http://www.theblaze.com/news/2016/12...e-of-caffeine/

  • #2
    The race of the guy charged legitimately surprised me.

  • #3
    I didn't know "officers" in the department of alcohol beverage control had arresting powers.

  • #4
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    Oh, you bet they do. Errbody gets those powers when you're a "Hero".

    I remember the fire marshal brought a gang out to inspect the facility where I once worked. Every one of 'em packing heat on their hip, because you never know when, as a fire marshal, you might need to put a cap in someone.

  • #5
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    Glad to see they can just by-pass the whole legislative process, and just invent a new law.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PilotsError View Post
    I didn't know "officers" in the department of alcohol beverage control had arresting powers.
    This. I hope to god this 'officer' is fired for an abuse of power. Sounds completely like a vindictive revenge move

  • #7
    The officer needs to be fired, as does the editor who let that article be published.

    The article clearly states that the officer was a she, but the picture is of a male officer. Also, the article refers to Joseph Scwab as "she" at one point.
    Last edited by MikeGundy'sRant; 12-29-2016 at 07:33 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by immortal13 View Post
    Glad to see they can just by-pass the whole legislative process, and just invent a new law.
    It's not a new law, it's California.

    This isn't really a case of bernard. It's a situation where the government is hunting for revenue and trying to probe for loopholes that could be a new source of $.

  • #9
    Quote Originally Posted by MikeGundy'sRant View Post
    The officer needs to be fired, as does the editor who let that article be published.

    The article clearly states that the officer was a she, but the picture is of a male officer. Also, the article refers to Joseph Scwab as "she" at one point.
    I think the "she" is referring to Joseph Scwab's lawyer... but it's poorly written so I can't be sure.

  • #10
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    Just another example of why women make poor law enforcement officers.

  • #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Shank View Post
    Just another example of why women make poor law enforcement officers.

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    Caffeine? Oh $#@!, I'm really $#@!ed now.

    I guess they don't have a "driving like an $#@!" law on the books.

  • #13
    Quote Originally Posted by immortal13 View Post
    Glad to see they can just by-pass the whole legislative process, and just invent a new law.
    They aren't inventing a new law, unfortunately. The law in most states allows for damn near any "substance" to be included. Here's Texas.

    (2) "Intoxicated" means:
    (A) not having the normal use of mental or physical faculties by reason of the introduction of alcohol, a controlled substance, a drug, a dangerous drug, a combination of two or more of those substances, or any other substance into the body; or
    (B) having an alcohol concentration of 0.08 or more.
    Leaves a lot of leeway for the officer on the scene to decide whatever he wants about your "mental or physical faculties." If he decides you're $#@!ed up, any substance will do from caffeine to aspirin to skittles. I imagine that CA is similar. The laws need to be more specific.

  • #14
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    Adrenaline elevates from being arrested and blood tested for no reason, then catch a dui charge for elevated adrenaline?

  • #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by DSA View Post
    It's not a new law, it's California.

    This isn't really a case of bernard. It's a situation where the government is hunting for revenue and trying to probe for loopholes that could be a new source of $.
    You have proof of a Cali gov't push to arrest people "on" caffeine?

    http://www.snopes.com/man-charged-dr...ence-caffeine/

    FALSE
    ORIGIN:On 26 December 2016, The Free Thought Project posted a story claiming that a man was arrested and charged with a DUI due to the presence of caffeine in his blood, implying his legal troubles were the result of merely drinking too much coffee:

    38-year-old Joseph Schwab has been fighting a DUI for over a year, despite the fact that he was not under the influence of any illegal drugs at the time, he did, however, test positive for caffeine.

    The outrageous-sounding story was picked up by multiple media outlets. However, the Solano County District Attorney's office said the case is being mischaracterized.

    Ken Kramer, chief investigator for the D.A.'s office, told us prosecutors initially believed Joseph Schwab, 36, was under the influence of a substance that did not readily turn up on laboratory toxicology tests, and that Schwab has not been charged with driving under the influence of caffeine:

    The District Attorney’s Office is continuing to investigate the case by consulting with experts to determine what substance contributed to the defendant’s impaired driving.

    As of 28 December 2016, the D.A.'s office dropped the DUI charge — but Schwab is still being charged with reckless driving:

    At the time the case was filed, the DUI Unit filed the DUI charge based upon the observations and opinion of the officer that the defendant was under the influence of a combination of substances, including a stimulant and a depressant.

    The officer’s observations included the defendant’s erratic and reckless driving, his demeanor at the time of the traffic stop, and his performance on a number of field sobriety tests.

    According to the D.A.'s office, Schwab was driving on an interstate highway in Solano County (which is in California's Bay Area) when he cut in front of an on-duty officer with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms:

    The officer then observed the same driver erratically weaving in and out of traffic almost causing several collisions. The officer initiated a traffic stop on the vehicle. During the traffic stop, the driver, Joseph Schwab, was contacted and the officer observed the defendant to be highly agitated, “amped up,” and his pupils were dilated. The officer noticed a number of work out supplements in the vehicle. The officer administered several standardized field sobriety tests, which are used routinely to determine impairment. Based upon the defendant’s performance of the field sobriety tests, the officer believed the defendant was too impaired to operate a motor vehicle and he was arrested for misdemeanor violations of Vehicle Code Section 23152(e) and Vehicle Code Section 23103. The officer offered the defendant to submit to a drug recognition evaluation, but he declined.

    We were unable to reach Schwab's attorney, Stacey Barrett, but she told the Guardian that she believed charges should be dropped because she has not received evidence that Schwab was under the influence of any substance other than caffeine:

    I have not been provided with any evidence to support a theory of prosecution for a substance other than caffeine at this time. Nor I have received any statements, reports, etc documenting any ongoing investigation since the [toxicology report] dated 18 November 2015.

    Because of prosecutors' previous statements and the fact they dropped the DUI charge despite finding caffeine present in Schwab's blood, they did not prosecute him over accusations he had been drinking coffee and driving. Schwab will still face one count of reckless driving.
    It looks like he was arrested, the cop thought he was amped up, they tested him, were confused he tested negatively, they've dropped the DUI charge, but a reckless driving charge remains.

  • #16
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    Yep that's what it sounds like. Dude was driving like $#@!. Cop assumed he was on something, as most would if they saw that kind of driving.

    Non story imo

  • #17
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    Where's the dash cam video?

  • #18
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    So to the cops, a negative tox screen just means the driver is on something not detectable by tox screen? Is that their explanation? And officers are trained to accurately determine by observation that a person is under the influence of "a combination of substances, including a stimulant and a depressant"?

  • #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Huckleberry View Post
    Where's the dash cam video?
    Come on. You know that cams are a difficult technology. They break easily and only work like 5 percent of the time. Somehow though, the computer nearly always works, and always connects to the PD network.

    Maybe we should get the Russians to "interfere" with our PD dash cams. Their dash cams don't seem to have the same problems. Or maybe just hire a bunch of cam girls to make it work.

  • #20
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    I'm all for taking down the pigs, but here's a pro tip. An article from theblaze that references an article from the Guardian should be taken with a boulder of salt.

  • #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by drew8117 View Post
    Yep that's what it sounds like. Dude was driving like $#@!. Cop assumed he was on something, as most would if they saw that kind of driving.

    Non story imo
    Wow, that's a slippery $#@!in' slope that just rolled off your back.

    But, hey, bop till ya drop.

  • #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by cajunhorn View Post
    Wow, that's a slippery $#@!in' slope that just rolled off your back.

    But, hey, bop till ya drop.
    man, you're on a roll.

    based on your previous post in nailing certain situations this really isn't like you.

    chill out.. better times lay ahead in posting the obvious re our Hero's good deeds
    Last edited by michaelpurify; 01-04-2017 at 01:32 PM.

  • #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by softlynow View Post
    You have proof of a Cali gov't push to arrest people "on" caffeine?

    http://www.snopes.com/man-charged-dr...ence-caffeine/



    It looks like he was arrested, the cop thought he was amped up, they tested him, were confused he tested negatively, they've dropped the DUI charge, but a reckless driving charge remains.
    I found a pic of the off duty ATF agent...


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    Quote Originally Posted by drew8117 View Post
    Yep that's what it sounds like. Dude was driving like $#@!. Cop assumed he was on something, as most would if they saw that kind of driving.

    Non story imo
    Do you honestly believe $#@!ty driving is a valid reason to arrest someone and throw them in jail?

    If so, we may as well go ahead and arrest the entire city of Austin and the entire state of Florida.

  • #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by texasjacket View Post
    I found a pic of the off duty ATF agent...

    Gonna need to know a lot more about this particular ATF agent to be sure.

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