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The Florida Bar

TLC’s Little Star found Not Guilty of DUI

Last week we reported that the star of TLC’s “Little People, Big World” Matt Roloff was in trial facing misdemeanor charges of DUI in his home state of Oregon. Roloff, who failed to provide a breath test and reportedly refused field sobriety tests, defended the charges by arguing he drove erratically because he was not used to the pedals in his wife’s customized van. Judge Donald R. Letourneau handed down the ‘not guilty’ sentence after Roloff’s attorney asked the judge to dismiss the jury after some members of the six panel of jurors performed internet research on various legal definitions and DUI tests against the judge’s instructions not to seek outside information. The Oregonian newspaper reported that the jurors researched Rather than moving for a mistrial, Roloff’s attorney requested the judge rule on the charges.

Judge Letourneau found Roloff not guilty of the DUI charges. He told The Oregonian newspaper that the Oregon Supreme Court found the horizontal nystagums gaze test only 77% accurate and that the state had failed to prove Roloff was DUI beyond a reasonable doubt. The judge did however find Roloff guilty of refusing to take a breath test as well as for failing to stay in his lane of travel. Roloff was fined $742.00 and $103.00 in court fines. Further, Roloff’s driving privileges have been suspended for three years due to a prior DUI diversion program he agreed to enter in 2003 and his failure to take the breath test following his more recent arrest.

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