In Oakland County, obtaining a police report in a drunk driving can sometimes be a difficult process. The first issue many people find in dealing with drinking and driving misdemeanor cases is that the prosecutor is under no obligation to provide discovery, i.e. Police reports and videos. Because of this, we as criminal defense attorneys have to take other avenues in order to get the report and the videos.
The main method in misdemeanor cases that we do to get discovery is to use the Michigan Freedom of Information Act, better known as the FOIA act, to obtain the report and anything else floating around that could be important to the case. We take our FOIAs seriously, as the leading FOIA case in Michigan is Amberg vs City of Dearborn, in which Amberg & Amberg lawyer Jim Amberg successfully sued Dearborn for failing to provide him with videos and reports.
Using the FOIA law allows us to obtain all sorts of things that we use to bury the police and prosecutor at a drunk driving trial. For example, we have successfully FOIA'd police policy manuals and use them against the police for failure to properly conduct owi investigations.
Obtaining a police report through FOIA is simple and simply requires one fill out a form at whatever governmental department where the record is sought.