Richard Machacek (Plaintiff) sought review of the trial court’s order affirming the order of the Defendant/Appellee Oklahoma Department of Public Safety (DPS) to disqualify his commercial drivers license (CDL). Plaintiff asserted the trial court erred as a matter of fact and law in construing the relevant Oklahoma statutes to permit disqualification of his commercial drivers license. Plaintiff asserted that, because the Oklahoma City Municipal Code, § 32–146, to which he entered a plea of no contest, did not require proof of a “knowing” violation, but because § 6–205.2(B)(4) conditioned disqualification of his commercial drivers license on the final conviction of “knowingly” leaving the scene of a collision, the disqualification of his commercial drivers license should be vacated. This Court held that the trial court did not err in its application of the rules of construction, or in construing the Oklahoma City Municipal Code, § 32–146, as implicitly requiring proof of a defendant’s “knowing” departure from the scene of an accident, or in determining that Plaintiff’s plea of no contest to the municipal charge of leaving the scene of an accident in violation of § 32–146 established Plaintiff’s “knowing” departure from the scene of an accident sufficient to support the disqualification of his commercial drivers license under § 6–205.2(B)(4). Therefore, this Court affirmed the order of the trial court.
This is a wrongful death action in which plaintiffs asserted that defective brakes on the bus owned by Elias A. and Pedro Rodriguez (defendants) caused the death of their decedent, H.K. Covel. Defendants contended that the negligence per se instructions to the jury about regulations that defendants violated should not have been given because they were not applicable to the issues in the case. For example, Instruction 9 listed statutes in force and effect in the State of Oklahoma at the time of the occurrence that require commercial chauffeurs to be licensed; that prohibit crossing the median into opposing traffic lanes when driving on divided highways and that prohibit driving at a speed in excess of 70 mph on a four-lane divided highway. Instruction 10 set out the federal regulations applicable to commercial vehicle operators and drivers. In sum, this Court affirmed the trial court’s denial of the defendants’ motion for judgment notwithstanding the verdict, new trial or remittitur because there was competent evidence to support the jury’s verdict and the verdict was not the product of passion or prejudice.
This cause arises from a motor vehicle accident between Ronald J. Fox and James R. Mize that occurred on July 29, 2015, near Sunnylane Road and Indian Hills Road in Norman, Oklahoma. Mr. Mize held a Class “A” commercial driver’s license subject to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSR), and Van Eaton stipulated that Mr. Mize was acting in the course and scope of employment at the time of the collision. Plaintiff contended that Van Eaton had a duty to prohibit Mr. Mize from operating its commercial motor vehicle while under the banned narcotic and that Van Eaton knew or should have known Mr. Mize was taking the narcotic. This Court found that employers employing unfit and unqualified drivers cannot insulate themselves from a negligent entrustment claim simply by stipulating that the employee driver was acting in the course and scope of employment. As a result, this Court affirmed the trial court’s denial of Van Eaton’s motion to dismiss the negligent entrustment claim, and remanded the case to the trial court for further proceedings.
Motorist whose driver’s license had been revoked for one year on basis that he had previously had his license revoked within ten years of the arrest giving rise to his conviction for driving under the influence (DUI) filed request to modify the revocation. The District Court, Oklahoma County, denied request. Motorist appealed. The Court of Civil Appeals held that trial court did not abuse its discretion in denying modification of one-year driver’s license suspension. Affirmed.
After Department of Public Safety (DPS) revoked driver’s license following his arrest for driving under the influence of alcohol and other intoxicants, driver filed petition appealing revocation. The District Court, McClain County, dismissed driver’s petition. He appealed. The Court of Civil Appeals affirmed. Driver petitioned for writ of certiorari and the Supreme Court granted writ. Holdings: The Supreme Court held that:  Supreme Court would take judicial notice of statute providing that photocopies were to be considered originals and admissible;  certified copy of DPS’s order was not required to perfect driver’s appeal; and  driver’s 30–day deadline to file appeal began to run ten days after date DPS mailed order. Court of Civil Appeals opinion vacated, and trial court reversed and remanded.
Defendant was convicted in the District Court, Rogers County, of driving under the influence of alcohol. Defendant appealed, contending that allowing state to punish him through criminal prosecution after administratively revoking his driver’s license impermissibly exposed defendant to double jeopardy. The Court of Criminal Appeals held that administrative revocation of defendant’s driver’s license under implied consent statutes did not constitute “punishment” for double jeopardy purposes and, thus, subsequent prosecution of defendant for driving under the influence of alcohol did not violate double jeopardy clause of State and Federal Constitutions. Ordered accordingly.
Driver’s licensee sought review of a decision from the Department of Public Safety revoking his driver’s license for a period of three years following his third alcohol-related offense committed within a five-year period. The District Court, Cleveland County, reduced the revocation period to one year. On the Department’s appeal, the Court of Civil Appeals affirmed the one-year revocation. On certiorari to the Court of Civil Appeals, the Supreme Court held that the licensee’s first revocation occurred when he actually lost driving privileges, which was within five years of his third revocation. The Court of Civil Appeals judgment vacated, and the District Court judgment reversed.
Motorist who alleged that he suffered injury by operation of a motor carrier and that motor carrier was required to be and was, in fact, insured by insurer stated a claim against insurer under Oklahoma statute which created a direct cause of action by a person injured by operation of a motor carrier against the motor carrier’s insurer, provided that the motor carrier was insured. 47 Okl.St.Ann § 230.30.
Motorist petitioned for review administrative suspension of driver’s license following arrest for driving under influence (DUI). The District Court set aside suspension order and reinstated motorist’s driving privileges. Appeal was taken, and the Court of Civil Appeals reversed. Certiorari review was granted. The Supreme Court held that:  delay of 20 months in conducting administrative suspension hearing violated motorist’s state constitutional right to speedy remedy in civil action, and  trial court had jurisdiction to consider motorist’s claim that 20–month delay in suspension hearing violated state constitutional right to speedy remedy, even if claim was not asserted in administrative proceedings. Opinion of Court of Civil Appeals vacated; judgment of District Court affirmed.
Implied consent law was challenged on grounds that it violated a constitutional guarantee against double jeopardy by subjecting licensee to retrial of criminal offense or to multiple punishments for its commission, and constituted impermissible encroachment either on executive or legislative branches upon powers constitutionally ascribed to judiciary. The District Court, Custer County, declared the “implied consent” provisions to be violative of State Constitution and reinstated driver’s license which had been reversed. The Commissioner of the State Department of Public Safety appealed. The Supreme Court held that: (1) acquittal upon criminal charge of being in actual, physical control of vehicle while under the influence of alcohol raises no constitutional barrier to regulatory proceeding for revocation of driver’s license, and (2) implied consent law was not tainted by unconstitutional encroachment upon powers of judiciary. Reversed and remanded.
Defendant, who had been charged with misdemeanor driving under the influence (DUI), filed motion to suppress the case, arguing that the district attorney was collaterally estopped from litigating the issue of whether her stop and seizure violated the Fourth Amendment, because the District Court, on defendant’s prior appeal of Department of Public Safety’s (DPS’s) administrative revocation of her driver’s license, had ruled that her stop and seizure violated the Fourth Amendment. The District Court, Oklahoma County, granted the motion. State appealed. The Court of Criminal Appeals held that in a matter of first impression, the doctrine of collateral estoppel did not apply to preclude district attorney from litigating Fourth Amendment issue. Reversed and remanded.
Former employee who took medication to control focal seizures was not qualified for his position operating a commercial motor vehicle (CMV), as required for his prima facie case of discrimination under the ADA. Although employee could perform the essential functions of a CMV operator while taking the prescribed dosage of medication, the fact that he had to take medication to control focal seizures necessarily rendered him unable to meet a job-related requirement of the employment position established under the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) standards. Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, § 101(8), 42 U.S.C.A. § 12111(8); 49 C.F.R. §§ 390.3(d), 391.41(b)(8).
No additional resources for Oklahoma at this time.