SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Local News

April 16, 2014

Serial drunken driver found guilty

Hearing set to prove offense was fifth OUI conviction

PEABODY — A serial drunken driver, who was charged with yet another OUI, was found guilty by a jury Monday afternoon in Lawrence Superior Court. Prosecutors now need to prove it was the man’s fifth drunken-driving offense.

Peter Hurley, 52, was arrested in Peabody on Nov. 4, 2011, after Peabody officers saw him pull out of a parking lot on Walnut Street by driving over a curb and then run two red lights in downtown Peabody. The case finally went to trial last November, but it ended in a mistrial after two officers brought up past history with Hurley during witness testimony.

Judge David Lowy at the time had barred testimony about Hurley’s past arrests on the grounds that it could bias the jury’s decision.

Hurley’s attorney, Kirk Bransfield, moved to dismiss the case, arguing that there was a long pattern of police misconduct and prejudice against his client. That motion was dismissed, and a new trial was conducted.

Hurley was charged with drunken driving, a fifth or subsequent offense, resisting arrest, making a threat to commit a crime and operating a motor vehicle with a suspended license, subsequent offense. The last charge was dismissed, however, according to Carrie Kimball Monahan, a spokeswoman for the Essex District Attorney’s Office.

Monahan said another hearing is scheduled for April 22 at noon in Lawrence Superior Court with Judge Richard Welch. The purpose of that session is to prove that the 2011 offense was Hurley’s fifth drunken-driving conviction. She said that proceeding usually occurs before a judge, but it could go to trial, as well.

Sentencing in the case is expected to happen the same day once a verdict is reached. Hurley is currently in custody.

You can reach John Castelluccio at 978-338-2527, jcastelluccio@salemnews.com or via Twitter at @SNjcastelluccio.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News

AP Video
US Airlines Cancel Israel Flights Obama Signs Workforce Training Law Crash Victims' Remains Reach Ukraine-held City Diplomatic Push Intensifies to End War in Gaza Obama Offers Condolences at Dutch Embassy Cat Fans Lap Up Feline Film Festival Raw: Lawmakers Scuffle in Ukraine's Parliament The Rock Finds His Inner 'Hercules' Michigan Plant's Goal: Flower and Die Raw: MH17 Passenger Remains in Kharkiv, Ukraine Raw: Israel Hits Gaza Targets, Destroys Mosques ShowBiz Minute: Hoffman, Oberst, Box Office WWII Vet Gets Medals, 70 Years Late Raw: Israel Bombs Multiple Targets in Gaza Veteran Creates Job During High Unemployment Raw: Cargo Craft Undocks From Space Station Widow: Jury Sent Big Tobacco a $23B Message New Orleans Plans to Recycle Cigarette Butts UN Security Council Calls for MH 17 Crash Probe Obama Bestows Medal of Honor on NH Veteran
Comments Tracker