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DUI charge reinstated in case where cop read lips

The Associated Press

SOUTHGATE, Mich. — Eye contact and reading lips are enough to allow police in Michigan to pull over a suspected drunken driver.

The Michigan appeals court has reinstated a charge against a Detroit-area man who was stopped only after a motorist signaled to a state trooper near a Southgate bar on St. Patrick’s Day 2008.

Trooper Christopher Bommarito says he stopped Shaun Barbarich after another motorist pointed, made eye contact and mouthed the words “almost hit me.” The trooper says he read her lips but never talked to her.

The decision released Wednesday was 2-1. Dissenting Judge Elizabeth Gleicher says people now will be empowered to target certain motorists for police searches. She says it violates the Constitution.

Defense lawyer Greg Boulahanis (Boula-HAHN-iss) says he’ll consider an appeal to the state Supreme Court.


February 03, 2011 04:04 AM EST

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