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    Barone

    Patrick Barone Principal Attorney & Firm Founder

    Principal attorney and Barone Defense Firm founder Patrick T. Barone is among the most experienced and well-respected DUI/OWI defense attorneys in the state of Michigan. His impressive record of case wins, published works, teaching experience, and client and peer reviews have cemented his esteemed position in the legal community.

    After beginning his legal career handling medical malpractice cases, Mr. Barone decided to open his own criminal defense firm and eventually narrowed his practice to focus solely on drunk and drugged driving defense. His passion for helping accused citizens and holistic approach to helping clients win back their lives have led to his firm’s success.

    Mr. Barone is the co-author of two books on DUI-related issues, including Defending Drinking Drivers (James Publishing) a well-known and highly respected multi-volume national legal treatise, and “The DUI Book – A Citizen’s Handbook on Fighting a Drunk Driving Charge.” Mr. Barone is also the executive editor of The DWI Journal, Law & Science, a nationally circulated legal periodical dedicated to improving the success rate of defense attorneys in drunk driving cases

    Mr. Barone has a sterling reputation among his clients and peers. US News & World Report has ranked him among America’s Best Lawyers and has named The Barone Defense Firm as one of America’s Best Law Firms. He enjoys a perfect rating on AVVO—the premiere client- and peer-rating site—and has been given a rating of “Seriously Outstanding” by SuperLawyers. Martindale-Hubbell has awarded Mr. Barone an AV rating, the highest achievable in the legal field.

    My Story

    I know what it’s like to be scared, in the dark, and feeling helpless – no one should have to feel that way.

    You can chalk it up to me being a dumb teenager, and there’s truth to it, but I didn’t do anything wrong.  Not really.  And yet, I was still treated like a common criminal.  And I remember feeling like the Detroit officers were getting a big kick out of the whole thing.  It seemed like they were getting pleasure from inflicting the emotional pain and humiliation. I remember the rude comments on the way to the precinct.

    Sitting in a Detroit jail cell, accused of Grand Theft Auto….That’s how I spent my 18th birthday!

    As a teenager, living close to an international border seemed fun, and going through customs was a breeze in those days.  Of course, at 18 we were still kids really, and my friends and I didn’t fully appreciate nor totally understand the need to be careful.  No need to give them a reason to interrogate you, that’s for sure.

    That night my Italian girlfriend made our reservations under the name “Tocco” at the Roma Café, a Downtown restaurant that was once a hangout for the Detroit mob.  A dimly lit dusty old place that might remind you of a brothel except that it smelled like veal Siciliano.  Possibly owing to my friend’s last name, the service that night was outstanding, diligent and exceedingly polite. After dinner, our plan was to go to Coach and Horses in Windsor to shoot pool with some friends.

    Our troubles started toward the end of our night when we approached the U.S. Canada border.

    I was driving a golden brown 1972 Pontiac Ventura.  An old beater of a car with a blue driver-side door, a crushed rear end, and bald tires. I paid roughly $200.00 for this rare beauty only a few months earlier and since the law had just changed, I left the former owner’s license plate right where it has always been – on the front bumper. The law had just changed making front plates unnecessary, so what did it matter that my front plate didn’t match the backplate?  The border agents didn’t see it that way. Especially since the front plate came up registered to a stolen car!

    When the agent stepped out of his little gate house and started walking around the car all suspicious like, I immediately started feeling something wasn’t right.  After a couple more questions, we were directed to pull over, then whisked inside a small sterile room with no windows or furniture. My stomach sank, and I could feel that lump in my throat – this wasn’t funny anymore, this was serious. After being interrogated and strip-searched, we were turned over to the Detroit Police Department.  Two burly Marine-cut officers talked briefly to the agents, grabbed some paperwork, then arrested me.

    As I’m sitting in silence in the back of Detroit PD cruiser the only thing I can hear is whirring sound of something electronic periodically punctuated by the clunky sound of the wheels jumping over each bump on our way to the precinct.  This has a strange almost hypnotic rhythm to it.  The ride feels like an eternity.  Soon, I am booked and tossed into an empty cell that is brightly lit from above by hanging fluorescent buzzing lights.  I hear the sound of metal on metal as the door closes behind me, and I realize I’m not just hearing but somehow actually feeling in the pit of my stomach the clunk of the doors locking.  My mouth is dry, and as I enter the cell the institutional smell hanging in the air grabs my nose; it’s kind of like a cross between a locker room and a hospital, but nastier, like they tried to make things clean and sterile but it really just smells like they’re covered up someone’s body odor, or worse.  The linoleum covered cement floor feels cold and hard under my feet.  I’m caged like an animal and I feel more alone than ever.

    After several hours of just me and God in that cell; suddenly, I am released, along with my girlfriend.  Not really released as much as kicked out in the pouring rain to start our drive home.  No apology, no explanation.

    It’s hard to really talk about all the sights and sounds and feelings, but if you’ve ever been in jail, you know what I mean.  And the experience stays with you. It wasn’t until a long time later that I finally got that smell out of my nose.  That’s what I remember most.  I also remember the feelings – scared and powerless and despite the bright lights, I was totally in the dark.   I didn’t know it then, but as bad as it was, that arrest changed the course of my life.

     

    I also know what it’s like to have to explain what happened to loved ones.

    I hardly made it home before dawn that night, so of course, the parents were upset.  My mom was beside herself with worry. And so were my girlfriend’s parents. I tried my best to apologize to them when I dropped her off back at home, but it didn’t matter.  That was our first and only date.  My parents found my story very hard to believe and insisted I must have done something wrong.  One thing I learned about being arrested; it doesn’t matter if you did it or not, people treat you different afterward.  People who are innocent don’t get arrested, right?

    And being bullied by men in authority with guns is no fun.

    As the son of a dentist who grew up in the suburbs, I can’t say that I know what it’s like to be targeted by the police.  But in this experience at least I learned what it’s like to be the target of a bully.  Looking back, I think this is when the seeds were sown in me; seeds that grew into a criminal defense lawyer.  On behalf of the clients I proudly serve today, my role is to make the bully fight fair.  Then, after working for a judge in law school, and seeing how the law is really practiced, not in the classroom but in the courtroom, I knew the criminal law would be my passion.  I’ve never looked back.

    Detailed Biography

    Patrick T. Barone began his legal career in 1988 when he was a Judicial Law Clerk to the Honorable Richard D. Kuhn of the Oakland County Circuit Court.  In 1992, he opened his law practice and initially he handled hundreds of disparate felony criminal matters in the adult and juvenile courts. In 1999, Mr. Barone decided to focus exclusively on cases involving allegations of intoxicated driving.   Almost immediately thereafter Mr. Barone quickly began to establish a national reputation for being among the best DUI defense lawyers in the country, and this lead to the formation of the Barone Defense Firm in 2003, which is now headquartered in Birmingham, Michigan.  The Barone Defense Firm maintains offices in Grand Rapids as well.

    After a national search, in 2006 Mr. Barone was offered the opportunity to become the new author of Defending Drinking Drivers, which was first published in 1986 and authored by one of the titans of DUI defense, John Tarantino.  This two-volume textbook remains widely considered a seminal work on the subject.  In 2007 Mr. Barone took over as the executive editor of the DWI JournalLaw and Science, and in 2008 he was offered a position as an adjunct professor at the Western University Cooley Law School where he teaches a course entitled “Drunk Driving Law & Practice.”  He has also authored chapters in Defending DUI Vehicular Homicide Cases, 2012/2014 eds., and a chapter in Witness Preparation and Examination for DUI Proceedings, 2015 ed.: Leading Lawyers on Understanding the Role of Witnesses in DUI Cases (Inside the Minds) (Aspatore Books).  In 2017 Mr. Barone authored two more books, one entitled “Michigan Gun Law” and The Entrepreneurs Guide to the Michigan Medical Marijuana Laws.

    In 2010 Mr. Barone accepted a position as a legal skills instructor for the CDAM/Cooley Trial Practice College, and in 2012 he graduated from the Gerry Spence Trial Lawyer’s College.  In 2017 Mr. Barone became a Board-Certified Practitioner of Psychodrama; an action method used by many of the Nation’s top trial lawyers for trial preparation and presentation.  No other Michigan lawyer has this distinction.

    Mr. Barone has applied his psychodrama training in his law and trial practice, in his teaching of law and trial skills, sociodrama in the business environment and Bibliodrama and psychodrama in the church setting.  In his capacity as a business consultant, Mr. Barone has worked with business owners and executives in businesses of all sizes throughout Michigan, including by way of example, TGI Direct, Movimento, AcuMax, A2 Energy Systems LLC, Spry Publishing, Compliance Training Partners/Drakeshire Dental, Booms Stone Co., The Hunter Group, LLC., Vistage Michigan, and dozens of other businesses and executives.

    Mr. Barone has an “AV” (highest) rating from Martindale-Hubbell, and since 2009 has been included in the highly selective US News & World Report’s America’s Best Lawyers while The Barone Defense Firm appears in their companion America’s Best Law Firms.  He has been rated “Seriously Outstanding” by SuperLawyers, rated “Outstanding/10.0” by AVVO and was appointed to the advisory board for the Michigan edition of Leading Lawyers Magazine.

    The youngest of 6 children, Mr. Barone grew up in Oakland County.  He has been happily married over 20 years and is the father of two girls.

    Mr. Barone is an Adjunct Professor at the Thomas M. Cooley Law School where he teaches a course entitled “Drunk Driving Practice.” This is believed to the only dedicated drunk driving course offered at any law school anywhere in the United States. The course combines criminal law, constitutional law, and forensic science into one course, and course topics include the science involved in drunk driving, such as alcohol metabolism, breath and blood testing, and field sobriety testing. Students also have the opportunity to apply what they learn in a mock trial at the end of the semester.

    Mr. Barone was also recently unanimously nominated by the Board of Regents for the National College for DUI Defense to the position of sustaining member. He is also a member of the National Association for Criminal Defense Lawyers, the Criminal Defense Lawyers of Michigan, and the Criminal Law Section of the Michigan State Bar Association.

    Publications

    DWI Journal: Law & Science Publishers: Whitaker Newsletters, Inc.

    The DWI Journal: Law & Science is published monthly, and is written for and subscribed to by attorneys who are determined to win their client’s DWI cases. The Journal’s editorial board includes many of America ‘s leading attorneys and forensic scientists practicing in the DWI field today.

    The DWI Journal: Law & Science is the only publication of its kind and it is dedicated to improving the success rate of defense attorneys in drunk driving cases. Because of this the National College for DUI Defense recommends that it be read and studied by all attorneys from every state who wish to sit for their DWI certification exam.

    Mr. Barone began as the Executive Editor of the DWI Journal: Law & Science with the December 2006 issue, and replaced the interim editor, Mr. William C. Head of Atlanta , Georgia who was named to the position in 2006. Previously, the DWI Journal: Law & Science had been edited since 1986 by Providence , Rhode Island attorney John A. Tarantino.

    Persons interested in subscribing to the DWI Journal: Law & Science should send an email to: subscriptions@dwijournal.com.

    DWI Journal: Law & Science

    Defending Drinking Drivers Publisher: James Publishing – Published Date: 10/01/1986 – Hardcover

    After a national search by the publisher, Mr. Barone was selected as the new author of this well-known and very well respected legal treatise. He has been the new author with the publication of the 2006 supplement. The work’s previous author, John A. Tarantino is known throughout the country as one of the nation’s true champion’s of the drunk driving accused.

    This two-volume treatise provides expert advice to attorneys handling the defense of the drinking driver. Every phase of drunk-driving litigation is addressed including pretrials and motions, voir dire and jury selection, opening statements, cross-examination techniques and the presentation of the defense case and summation. Post-conviction matters are also addressed including sentencing.

    A significant portion of the treatise covers the science of alcohol, including the absorption, distribution and elimination of alcohol in the human body. Breath and blood testing are also extensively covered.

    This remarkable treatise extensively covers the tactics, motions, and national case law attorneys need to develop a winning strategy.

    Defending Drinking Drivers

    The DUI Book Hardcover. Read the press release

    Unlike the legal treatise “Defending Drinking Drivers” which was written as a research and reference tool for lawyers, The DUI Book was written for the DUI accused. In fact, The DUI Book is the first book of its kind to comprehensively cover the topic of drunk driving from the perspective of the drunk driving accused. The DUI Book is easy to read, and should quickly become the indispensable handbook for those accused of drunk driving.

    Mr. Barone has written the Michigan supplement for this work, and the principal text was written by Mr. William C. Head of Atlanta, Georgia. Mr. Head has been called the Nation’s top DUI defense lawyer, and Mr. Barone was specifically chosen by him to co-author The DUI Book.

    Read what others have to say about The DUI Book.

    The DUI Book

    The Legality of Search Publisher: West, Aspatore Books; Revised edition edition (August 1, 2011)

    The Legality of Search and Seizure in DUI Cases provides an authoritative, insider’s perspective on best practices for identifying and litigating Fourth Amendment violations during a DUI defense. Featuring experienced DUI defense practitioners from around the country, this book guides the reader through the proper search and seizure procedures and NHTSA standards that law enforcement should follow during the initial stop, investigation, and DUI arrest.

    These authors discuss the mistakes that officers make during the process, analyzing how lawyers can explore and exploit the errors to have the evidence and arrest suppressed. Looking at the evidentiary factors that come into play, these attorneys also evaluate the types of evidence to collect and examine, strategies for cross-examining expert witnesses, the impact of new technology on evidence, and how to help clients understand the search and seizure issues that arise during a DUI case. Finally, these leaders examine the latest trends and case law in the enforcement of DUIs and the prosecution of cases, reflecting on how they impact defense strategies, clients, and counsel. The different niches represented and the breadth of perspectives presented enable readers to get inside some of the great legal minds of today, as these experienced lawyers offer up their thoughts on the keys to success within this controversial field.

    The Legality of Search

    Witness Preparation Publisher: Thomson Reuters (October 7, 2016)

    Being arrested and charged with driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs does not automatically lead to a conviction. As discussed in Witness Preparation and Examination for DUI Proceedings, skilled DUI defense lawyers explain how the witness testimony brought to bear in challenging the prosecution’s case is critical in generating the best results for those charged with drunk driving offenses.

    Key witnesses in DUI proceedings include law enforcement officers, fact witnesses, and expert witnesses-including toxicologists and accident reconstructionists. In this year’s edition, leading criminal defense attorneys from across the country guide the reader through the myriad issues that may arise in DUI cases and the wide array of witnesses called upon to address them.

    Witness Preparation

    Defending DUI Vehicular Publisher: Thomson Reuters (December 1, 2014)

    Defending DUI Vehicular Homicide Cases provides an authoritative, insider’s perspective on handling a vehicular homicide or manslaughter case where a client was driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. Featuring experienced criminal defense attorneys from the country’s top firms, this book guides the reader through the important legal trends and recent cases influencing this area, and what these changes mean for clients and their counsel. These top lawyers share important guidance that will be useful to attorneys new to the practice area as well as seasoned practitioners, as they discuss how to collect and evaluate forensic evidence, utilize technical and scientific experts to prepare an effective defense, and appropriately challenge the prosecution’s witnesses. Whether the focus is on achieving success in the courtroom or negotiating a settlement offer, these authors disclose advice that will help you satisfy your clients’ needs.

    Additionally, these leaders examine how to deal with the challenges of these cases, including the complex scientific evidence, evolving technology, strict penalties, and the deep emotions involved. The different niches represented and the breadth of perspectives presented enable readers to get inside some of the great legal minds of today, as these experienced lawyers offer up their thoughts on the keys to success within this high-stakes field.

    Defending DUI Vehicular

    Professional Memberships & Activities

    Education

    • Juris Doctor, 1991, Detroit College of Law at Michigan State University
    • Clerkship: Full time position with the Honorable Richard D. Kuhn, Oakland County Circuit Court,1988-1991. Assisted the Judge and Staff Attorney in the research and analysis of cases presented for motion call and then prepared drafts of the Court’s final opinions and orders; administered the Court’s civil and criminal dockets; supervised junior clerk; reviewed submitted proposed orders prior to Judge’s signature.
    • Internship: With the Honorable John N. O’Brien, Oakland County Circuit Court, summer term, 1990. Assisted Judge O’Brien in the research and analysis of a variety of legal issues and prepared pre-motion memoranda for the Court’s use.
    • B.S. Biology, 1987 Oakland University, Rochester, MI

    Articles

    The Brave New World of DUI Defense, DWI Journal, Law and Science, Vol. 22, No. 6, June, 2007.

    Asking the Jury for Justice, DWI Journal, Law and Science, Vol. 22, No. 5, May, 2007.

    DUI Discovery and the “126-Day” Rule: A Defense Attorney’s Perspective, SADO Criminal Defense Newsletter/DUI Defense Column, Volume 30, No. 7, April, 2007.

    New Breath Testing Rules Offer Accused Less Protection Against Unreliable Evidence, SADO Criminal Defense Newsletter/DUI Defense Column, Volume 30, No. 8, May, 2007

    Persuading Juries Using the Six Principles of Influence, DWI Journal, Law and Science, Vol. 22, No. 4, April, 2007. Using Your Client’s

    Disability to Cripple the State’s Case, DWI Journal, Law and Science, Vol. 22, No. 3, March, 2007.

    Serum Blood Defenses in DUI Cases: Why Serum Doesn’t Tell the “Whole” Story, DWI Journal, Law and Science, Vol. 22, No. 2, February, 2007.

    Heidi’s Law Removes 10Year Look-Back for Felony Drunk Driving,  SADO Criminal Defense Newsletter/DUI Defense Column, Volume 30, No. 5, February, 2007

    Representing the Out of State Driver, SADO Criminal Defense Newsletter/DUI Defense Column, Volume 30, No. 4, January, 2007

    Using Common Metaphors and Analogies to Win at Trial, DWI Journal, Law and Science, Vol. 22, No. 1, January, 2007.

    Crafting Winning Arguments for Your Next OWI Trial, SADO Criminal Defense Newsletter/DUI Defense Column, Volume 30, No. 3, December, 2006.

    Does Anstey Suggest an Expanded Role for Michigan’s DUI Juries?, CDAM The Right to Counsel, Vol. 13, No. 3, Fall 2006.

    Lectures

    • Drunk Driving Update – 2007 Bench/Bar Conference, by invitation of the Oakland County Bar Association, April 20, 2007.
    • Panel Presentation – Validity of Breathalyzer and Michigan Case Law Update, by invitation of the Michigan License Beverage Association, September 18, 2006.
    • DUI-DWI Seminar, Summer 2006, by invitation of Legal Brand Marketing and presented in Los Angeles, California, August 26, 2006.
    • Drunk Driving Defense ­ Standardized Field Sobriety Testing, by invitation of the Detroit/Wayne County Criminal Advocacy Program, and presented in Detroit on October 7, 2005.
    • Defending the Drunk Driving Case with Blood Intoxication Evidence, Sponsored by Lorman Education Services, and presented in Detroit on July 25, 2003.
    • Felony Driving Issues, Sponsored by the Detroit / Wayne County Criminal Advocacy Program, and presented in Detroit on October 10, 2003.

     

    Television/Media Appearances & Press References

    • Problem Solvers: Reliability of SCRAM Bracelets Questioned, Kerry Birmingham, Fox 2 News, DetroitMay 9, 2007
    • Warren Pierce Show, WJR AM Radio, November 26, 2006.
    • Battle brews over gadget to curb drunken driving, Laura Berman, Detroit News, November 21, 2006.
    • No dismissal for drunk driving defendants denied independent chemical tests, as reported in: 20 Michigan Lawyer’s Weekly, No. 39, August 14, 2006.
    • National effort targets drunk drivers, as reported in the following News Papers:  Detroit Free PressThe Mercury News and Lexington Herald Leader (Kentucky). “Defendant’s will need ‘good cause’ to discover booking video under MCR 6.201”, as reported in: 20 Michigan Lawyer’s Weekly, No. 29, June 5, 2006.Barone authors top drunk driving defense treatise, as reported in: 20 Michigan Lawyer’s Weekly, 631, March 27, 2006.

    Advanced Level Training Programs

    • National College for DUI Defense, 2007 Summer Session, July 18-21, 2007, Harvard Law School, Cambridge, MA.
    • NHTSA/IACP Standardized Field Sobriety Testing Practitioner Certification Course, Presented in conjunction with Michigan DUI Lawyer’s Association, Conducted on June 22-24, 2007, Romulus, Michigan.
    • Mastering Scientific Evidence in DUI/DWI Cases, Sponsored by Texas Criminal Defense Lawyer’s Association and the National College for DUI Defense, Dallas, Texas, April 19 – 21, 2007 (via DVD).
    • National College for DUI Defense, 2007 Winter Session, Tucson, Arizona,  January 18-20, 2007.
    • DWI Means Defend With Ingenuity, Making Over Your DUI Practice, co-sponsored by NACDL/NCDD and presented in Las Vegas, October 12-14, 2006 (by digital audio).
    • National College for DUI Defense, Summer Trial College, July 19-22, 2006, Harvard Law School, Cambridge, MA
    • Mastering Scientific Evidence in DUI/DWI Cases, Sponsored by Texas Criminal Defense Lawyer’s Association and the National College for DUI Defense, Dallas, Texas, March 30 – April 1, 2006 (via DVD).
    • Drunk Driving Defense Update 2000: Sponsored by Institute of Continuing Legal Education, September 29, 2000.
    • Preserving Federal Appellate Issues at the Trial Court Level: Sponsored by Oakland County Bar Assn., September 19, 2000.
    • Child Abuse Cases: Specifically Shaken Baby: Sponsored by Oakland County Bar Assn., July 18, 2000.
    • College on Problems of Drug Dependence, 62nd Annual Scientific Meeting, San Juan, Puerto Rico, June 17-22, 2000.
    • The Defense of Entrapment and the Use of Confidential Informants: Sponsored by Oakland County Bar Assn. with Judge Wendy Potts of the Oakland County Circuit Court presenting, May 15, 2000.
    • Difficult DUI’s & Tragic Consequences, NACDL/NCDD DUI Seminar presented in Las Vegas, Nevada, 2000, via digital audio.
    • DWI Means “Defend with Ingenuity,” NACDL/NCDD DUI Seminar presented in Las Vegas, Nevada,1999 via digital audio.
    • Sentencing Guidelines: Sponsored by Oakland County Bar Assn., December 21, 1999.