Zach V. Thomas

The Olathe Criminal Defense Lawyer

Charged with a DUI?

The most common question I hear when talking to a client who has been arrested for drunk driving is “will I lose my driver’s license?” A suspended license affects all aspects of your life, from your ability to work to taking your kids to school. Relevant considerations for the initial determination of a suspension will be your history (do you have a prior DUI or were you driving while suspended) and the results of your blood alcohol content (BAC) test.

preserve your driving ability

However, there are timely steps that can be taken to help preserve your driving ability, including the request of an Administrative Hearing. At the Administrative Hearing, a lawyer with my experience will be able to identify and exploit any mistakes that may have been made by arresting officers with the goal of preventing the immediate suspension of your license. However, your lawyer will only have 14 days from the date of your arrest to request the hearing, and if a hearing is not requested in that 14 day period, you waive your right to challenge any license suspension. It is essential to hire a lawyer as soon as possible after your arrest to preserve your strategic options.

The next question I typically hear is “will I go to jail?” Many of my clients are victims of a system that is looking for drunk driving convictions. From the moment an officer first approaches your car window, they are looking to build a case against you, even if you’ve only had one beer while catching a Royals game with friends. We will examine the audio and video of your arrest, from the validity of the initial police stop through ensuring proper calibration of the breathalyzer at the police station. Based on our review, we will discuss a variety of options.

always ready to fight for you

The first option we will discuss is taking your case to trial. The burden of proof falls on the state to show that beyond a reasonable doubt, you were driving over the legal limit of .08 and as a result, your driving was unsafe. There are many avenues an experienced attorney can pursue to prevent a prosecutor from meeting that burden. We will work together to discuss the potential risks and benefits of going to trial, based on the specific facts associated with your case.

If you decide that a trial is not the best avenue for your case, we will be working with the prosecutor to negotiate a plea deal on your charge. The results will vary depending on many factors, including whether or not this is your first DUI charge, with possible results ranging from diversion to jail time. Call me to schedule a free consultation so that we can discuss potential results more specific to the facts of your case.

  • DUI STATUTE
  • 8-1567. Driving under the influence; penalties.
    (a) Driving under the influence is operating or attempting to operate any vehicle within this state while:

    (1) The alcohol concentration in the person's blood or breath as shown by any competent evidence, including other competent evidence, as defined in paragraph (1) of subsection (f) of K.S.A. 8-1013, and amendments thereto, is .08 or more;
    (2) the alcohol concentration in the person's blood or breath, as measured within three hours of the time of operating or attempting to operate a vehicle, is .08 or more;
    (3) under the influence of alcohol to a degree that renders the person incapable of safely driving a vehicle;
    (4) under the influence of any drug or combination of drugs to a degree that renders the person incapable of safely driving a vehicle; or
    (5) under the influence of a combination of alcohol and any drug or drugs to a degree that renders the person incapable of safely driving a vehicle.


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    TRAFFIC Violations

    Traffic tickets can appear to be insignificant; however, they can still affect your ability to drive and/or how much you pay for car insurance. If you’ve received a speeding ticket, it’s important to consider amending that ticket to a non-moving violation so that it doesn’t remain on your driving record. An experienced lawyer can walk you through how a ticket will affect your driving record and how he can get this off of your record. Speeding tickets are typically the least harmful for your driving record. Other tickets like driving while suspended and leaving the scene of an accident have more serious affects on your driving record. Each violation is unique as is your driving record . Contact an attorney so he can walk you through the affects of this ticket.

    WHY DO YOU NEED AN ATTORNEY for a traffic ticket?

    An attorney can help you amend or “fix” your speeding ticket or any other traffic ticket. Municipal Courts and the city prosecutors do not always allow you to amend or fix your speeding ticket. Speaking to a lawyer can help clear up any confusion as to how the speeding ticket may affect your insurance rates in the future. If allowed to amend the speeding ticket, often times, it may be in your best financial interests to amend / fix the speeding or traffic ticket. Contact the Law Office of Zach V. Thomas so that you may speak with a lawyer who can advise you on how to amend or fix your traffic or speeding ticket.

    WHAT INFORMATION DOES YOUR ATTORNEY NEED to fix your ticket?

    If you speak with a lawyer about fixing or amending your speeding ticket, the lawyer will need key information from your traffic ticket. First off, the lawyer will want to know where your ticket was issued. Each municipality retains jurisdiction over it’s speeding tickets. For example, if an Olathe police officer issues you a speeding ticket in Olathe, then the Olathe Municipal Court will be the municipal court that will amend or fix your speeding ticket. Similarly, if an Overland Park police officer writes you a speeding ticket, then the Overland Park Municipal Court will fix or amend your speeding ticket. The same holds true on the Missouri side. If a Kansas City Missouri police officer writes you a speeding ticket, then the Kansas City Missouri Municipal Court will be the court that permits you to amend or fix your ticket. Likewise, if a police officer from Harrisonville Missouri issues you a speeding ticket, then the Harrisonville Municipal Court will retain the ability to fix or amend your speeding ticket.

    Not every speeding or traffic ticket is issued by a municipal police department. Sometimes, speeding tickets are issued by a Sheriff’s Department or Highway Patrolman. In these cases, the county in which the speeding ticket is issued will retain jurisdiction over the right to amend or fix the speeding ticket. For instance, if a deputy of the Johnson County Sheriff’s Department writes you a ticket, you will have to go to the Johnson County District court to amend or fix your speeding ticket. Similarly, if a deputy in the Jackson County Sheriff’s Department issues a speeding ticket, then the Jackson County District Court holds the right to amend or fix your speeding ticket. In the case of the Highway Patrol, the location of where the traffic ticket was issued dictates where the speeding ticket can be amended or fixed. For example, if the Kansas Highway Patrol were to issue you a ticket on I-35 in Olathe, Overland Park, Merriam, or Lenexa, the Johnson County District Court retains jurisdiction over the right to amend or fix the speeding or traffic ticket.

    While all of this may sound confusing, a traffic lawyer can help explain this process to you so that it makes sense. Contact the Law Office of Zach V. Thomas so that you can figure out what to do if you are issued a speeding ticket.