Posts tagged "1014816"

Commonwealth v. Adonsoto (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-148-16)

NOTICE:  All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.  If you find a typographical error or other formal error, please notify the Reporter of Decisions, Supreme Judicial Court, John Adams Courthouse, 1 Pemberton Square, Suite 2500, Boston, MA, 02108-1750; (617) 557-1030; SJCReporter@sjc.state.ma.us   SJC-11978   COMMONWEALTH  vs.  GLENIS A. ADONSOTO.       Norfolk.     February 11, 2016. – September 16, 2016.   Present:  Gants, C.J., Spina, Cordy, Botsford, Duffly, Lenk, & Hines, JJ.[1]     Motor Vehicle, Operating under the influence.  Constitutional Law, Self-incrimination, Breathalyzer test, Confrontation of witnesses.  Evidence, Breathalyzer test, Hearsay. Interpreter.  Practice, Criminal, Interpreter, Hearsay, Confrontation of witnesses, Instructions to jury.       Complaint received and sworn to in the Stoughton Division of the District Court Department on July 23, 2012.   The case was tried before James H. McGuiness, Jr., J.   The Supreme Judicial Court granted an application for direct appellate review.     Christopher DeMayo for the defendant. Varsha Kukafka, Assistant District Attorney, for the Commonwealth. Eric R. Atstupenas, for Massachusetts Chiefs of Police Association, Inc., amicus curiae, submitted a brief.     HINES, J.  The defendant, Glenis A. AdonSoto, was convicted by a jury of operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor, G. L. c. 90, § 24 (1) (a) (1).  The defendant, whose native language is Spanish, was stopped in the early morning hours of July 22, 2012, by a Stoughton police officer in response to a telephone call from a concerned driver.  After the defendant was arrested and transported to the police station, the police secured the services of a telephonic language interpreter service to read the defendant her rights and instruct her on how to perform the breathalyzer test.  The defendant did not properly perform the test during three attempts, producing no usable result.  At the trial, the judge admitted in evidence the defendant’s failure to perform the breathalyzer test. The defendant appealed, asserting as error (1) the admission of her failure to produce a usable breathalyzer result, claiming that it should have been excluded as “refusal” evidence under G. L. c. 90, § 24 (1) (e); (2) the admission of the interpreter’s English language version of her statements as hearsay and a violation of her constitutional right of confrontation; (3) insufficiency of the evidence of impairment; and (4) prejudicial errors in the instructions to the jury.  We granted the defendant’s application for direct appellate review.  We affirm the conviction based on our conclusions that the failure to properly perform a breathalyzer test after giving consent is not inadmissible as refusal evidence; that the police-appointed interpreter acted as the defendant’s agent in the circumstances of […]

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Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - September 16, 2016 at 4:11 pm

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