Talk to a lawyer now about your Dearborn case by calling (734) 591-0100 or complete a free online evaluation of your Dearborn DUI case.

Drunk Driving Charges in Dearborn Michigan

Quick Facts about the 19th District Court in Dearborn, Michigan, Wayne County District Court

Picture of the 19th District Court in Dearborn Michigan where local DUI / OWI / Drunk Driving charges are prosecuted

If you are charged with a DUI offense in Dearborn, Michigan then your case will be heard in the 19th District Court in the City of Dearborn. The three current judges of the 19th District Court are the Honorable Mark W. Somers, the Honorable Sam Salamey and the Honorable William C. Hultgren.

The Maze Legal Group maintained a law office in the City of Dearborn on Monroe Street for several years, and Dearborn is a great place, but it is also an unusual city. It is very unique, even down to its bar scene and police department. Dearborn has a huge number of drinking establishments, ranging from nice restaurants & martini bars, to sports bars and dive bars. The local police seem to patrol these areas, but they do not tend to arrest the borderline cases. Most of the cases that we receive from the Dearborn area are high blood alcohol cases, with one or two exceptions. Our main office is now located in Livonia, Michigan, with another office in Romulus, Michigan, but we have a lot of experience dealing with all of the 19th District Court personnel and departments.

Although Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy and the various assistant prosecuting attorneys working under the elected official have the ability to prosecute drunk driving cases in the Dearborn district court, most of the drunk driving cases are handled locally by the City of Dearborn Law Department. Whereas most municipal government's subcontract legal services to private law firms, the City of Dearborn is one of the few municipal governments to have its own law department. In addition to the local Dearborn Police Department, the Wayne County Sheriff and the Michigan State Police occasionally charge drunk driving cases in the 19th District Court.

Thumbnail Sketch of DUI / OWI Penalties You Face in Dearborn in the 19th District Court If Convicted

If you plead guilty or if you are found guilty of an alcohol-related offense in Dearborn following a trial, you are facing the following penalties. Please note that your driver's license remains valid unless or until you enter a plea or are found guilty, even though the police may have issued you a temporary paper license.

First Time Offender: Super Drunk Over .17 BAC

First Time Offender: OWI - Operating While Intoxicated (Same as DUI or DWI)

First Time Offender: OWVI - Operating While Impaired

A second offense for either OWI or OWVI within seven years of a prior OWI or OWVI results in tougher penalties, greater likelihood of jail, and a lifetime revocation of a person's driver's license. A third offense for any combination of OWI and OWVI charges in a lifetime is a felony OWI 3rd offense, which carries mandatory jail and a possible prison term of up to 5 years.

Drug and Alcohol Testing in the Dearborn District Court

If you are arrested and charged with a DUI in the Dearborn district court, JAMS testing is regularly ordered as a condition of probation. It may also be ordered as a condition of bond on release. JAMS, LLC stands for "Jail Alternatives for Michigan Services," and it is a private company that performs drug and alcohol monitoring. Their website provides additional information. Increasingly, the 19th District Court probation department is employing urine tests for alcohol known as EtG testing. Whenever you are going to court, whether it is in Dearborn or elsewhere, assume that you might be subjected to drug or alcohol testing, and do not attempt to purchase gimmicks claiming to help pass a drug test. Important: When reporting for probation, a mandatory breath test is given on a PBT. Do not arrive to court after consuming alcohol!

19th District Court Sobriety Court Program

The Dearborn District Court does not have a sobriety court program at this time. Important: Since the 19th District Court does not have a sobriety court program, motorists facing a second offense for OWI 2nd will NOT be eligible for a restricted license. If you are facing a second alcohol-related offense within seven years of a prior conviction, it is critical that you hire a lawyer and challenge the case. Two alcohol-related convictions within seven years results in a lifetime driver's license revocation with no restrictions and no ability to get a license in another state for work or any other reason.

The 19th District Court Prosecutors

Please note: We do not recommend that you contact the prosecutors directly! It is always wiser to have your lawyer engage in all communications with the prosecutor because statements that you make can be used against you.

State Prosecutor for Wayne County

Kym L. Worthy (P38875)
Wayne County Prosecutor
1441 Saint Antoine St
Frank Murphy Hall of Justice
Detroit, MI 48226
Phone: (313) 224-5777
Fax: (313) 224-8180

Dearborn City Prosecutor

Nicole Bernadette Tabin (P73685)
Assistant Corp. Counsel
City of Dearborn Dept of Law
13615 Michigan Ave
Dearborn, MI 48126
Phone: (313) 943-2035
Fax: (313) 943-2469

Nicole has replaced the former city prosecutor who handled the drunk driving cases in Dearborn, William DeBiasi. Although she is relatively new to the job, she has proven to be competent and slightly better than Bill was on defense issues. That said, however, the City of Dearborn gives "marching orders" to its prosecutors, so the Nicole has little discretion on drunk driving cases. In other words, bad cases will be forced to trial, even if it results in a not guilty verdict.

19th District Court Judges

The following opinions are drawn from our experiences and dealings with the judges in the 19th District Court. It's important to understand that these are just opinions, and other lawyers might disagree. Because we routinely challenge drunk driving cases, however, our firm's experience with a particular judge might be different from lawyers who do not take cases to trial. None of the comments here should be viewed as an attempt to discredit a particular judge or reflect poorly upon the judiciary.

Hon. Mark W. Somers

Judge Mark W. Somers of the 19th District Court on DUI / OWI / Drunk Driving Cases

Judge Mark W. Somers of the 19th District Court is a very conservative and formal judge. There is little doubt that he favors the prosecution's side, but perhaps not the prosecutor. It appears that he tries to keep his decisions grounded in the law. He holds relatively extreme views of marijuana and other controlled substances, although he is by no means the worst judge in the Detroit metro area on this issue. On cases handled by other lawyers and other law firms regarding medical marijuana, he has made some terrible rulings that are discussed on our DUI Maze blog. (In his defense, at least some of the arguments that have been presented to him have been ridiculous.) Of the three judges in Dearborn, Judge Somers is the only judge to have ever jailed any of our clients, but it was a short sentence and not excessive given the facts. At trial, Judge Somers is a relatively fair judge, providing a neutral tone before the jurors most of the time. We have had jury trial victories as well as defeats before Judge Somers, and neither the victories nor the defeats can be attributed to any sort of biased demeanor by the judge. At sentencing, Judge Somers is generally fair and reasonable, and he has never punished any of our clients for exercising an aggressive defense.

Hon. William C. Hultgren

Judge William C. Hultgren of the 19th District Court on DUI / OWI / Drunk Driving Cases

Judge William C. Hultgren of the 19th District Court is one of the nicest judges in the area, and practicing law before him is a real pleasure. He allows a defense lawyer to take a case to trial without interference and generally allows both sides to argue their case. This is what most trial lawyers look for in a good trial judge. That said, however, Judge Hultgren was a long-time city prosecutor before taking the bench in 1992. On motions, defense lawyers are generally dead in the water while the prosecutor walks on that water. This can make defending a DUI case before Judge Hultgren difficult because jurors who hear potentially prejudicial evidence that should not be admitted will tend to convict. This casts the burden upon the accused to pursue appeals on legal issues, which can be extremely expensive.

We have a lot of experience before Judge Hultgren. Our law offices were located in downtown Dearborn for several years, and we have had numerous motions, evidentiary hearings, and jury trials in the 19th District Court.

Hon. Sam Salamey

Judge Sam Salamey of the 19th District Court on DUI / OWI / Drunk Driving Cases

Judge Sam Salamey is new to the bench after winning an election against former Chief Judge Richard Wygonik. Judge Salamey has a great reputation in the local area, and he has served as the local magistrate in the Dearborn court for 14 years before being elected to the bench. Before he became a magistrate, he prosecuted local cases in Romulus and Garden City for 8 years. So far, lawyers in the defense bar have indicated that Judge Salamey has an open mind and is willing to listen to arguments, but we have not had any cases with Judge Salamey yet.

19th District Court Map

Map of 19th District Court and how to find the court where your DUI charge will be heard

The court is located at 16077 Michigan Ave., Dearborn, MI 48126. The court is located east of the Southfield freeway (M39) off the Michigan Avenue exist. It is in the same complex as the Dearborn Police Department but set further back off the road. The quickest way to the court is by traveling Michigan Avenue from either direction, but people from out-of-town should stick to I-94 and M39. The court's telephone number is (313) 943-2060.

If You Are Searching for Qualified Dearborn DUI Lawyers . . .

If you are currently charged with drunk driving in Dearborn, Michigan, and seeking a qualified Dearborn DUI lawyer to represent you in the 19th District Court, please complete our free on-line evaluation form or call our office at (888) 941-1122 or locally at (734) 591-0100.

The Maze Legal Group can provide you with the highest quality representation in your Dearborn drunk driving case. Mr. Maze is an award-winning attorney and one of Michigan's leading drunk driving defense lawyers. He limits his practice to handling only drunk driving cases and DUI-related traffic matters. He is certified in standardized field sobriety tests and teaches other lawyers how to defend DUI cases. He has been trained on the BAC Datamaster breath testing device at National Patent Analytical Systems and owns two BAC Datamaster devices. He has received toxicology training in blood and urine testing, and he has attended hundreds of hours of specialized training in DUI defense across the county.

The Maze Legal Group has handled many Dearborn DUI cases, successfully representing clients through motions and jury trials that have resulted in favorable rulings. If you want to know more about our experience in handling drunk driving cases in the 19th District Court or what you might expect in your case, call our office and schedule an appointment with Mr. Maze.