Ap­peals court re­verses DUI con­vic­tion of wheel­chair user

The Washington Times Daily - - NATION -

PORT­LAND | The Ore­gon Court of Ap­peals has re­versed the con­vic­tion of a wheel­chair user who had been found guilty of driv­ing un­der the in­flu­ence of in­tox­i­cants.

James Greene of Wald­port was ar­rested in Novem­ber 2012 af­ter en­ter­ing a cross­walk in a mo­tor­ized wheel­chair and strik­ing the side of a mov­ing pickup.

Po­lice de­ter­mined he was im­paired by al­co­hol and drugs, and a jury con­victed him of drunken driv­ing.

In his ap­peal, Mr. Greene ar­gued that he should have been con­sid­ered a pedes­trian, not sub­ject to the DUI law.

The state dis­agreed, point­ing to a law that treats mo­tor­ized wheel­chairs like bi­cy­cles when they are driven on bike lanes.

In its opin­ion Thurs­day, the Ap­peals Court de­cided leg­is­la­tors only in­tended to have wheel­chairs treated like bi­cy­cles in that nar­row cir­cum­stance, and users should be con­sid­ered pedes­tri­ans when in a cross­walk.

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