Man convicted of DUI 2 years after arrest; trial delayed by questions about state toxicology lab

FORKS — Nearly two years after Mark Decker was arrested, he was found guilty of driving while intoxicated and sentenced to serve two days in jail and pay a $1,345 fine.

Decker’s trial had been repeatedly delayed before it was conducted last Friday, as questions about the State Patrol Toxicology Lab results were investigated.


In July 2007, lab manager Ann Marie Gordon resigned after she was accused of signing false statements on hundreds of tests.

Hundreds of cases throughout the state were dismissed, and many more were delayed or retried after errors in the way the lab calibrated its Breathalyzer tests were found. The errors slightly skewed some results between 2005 and 2007.

In Clallam County, prosecutors then said that none or very few cases might be affected by the tests at the lab.

At Decker’s trial, several State Patrol experts testified that none of the violations seen in other cases were present in this case, said Doug Jensen, Clallam County deputy prosecutor, in a statement.

‘Justice delayed . . .’

“There’s an old saying in criminal defense that ‘justice delayed is justice served,'” Prosecuting Attorney Deb Kelly said in a statement.

“In this instance, real justice prevailed despite the delays.

“My office’s mission is to get drunk drivers off the roads and keep them off — no matter how long it takes.”

In the original case, court documents said that Decker in December 2007 met with friends at a Forks restaurant and then drove to a local bar.

He was stopped and arrested by the State Patrol while driving home from the bar.

Decker was sentenced to 365 days in the Clallam County jail, with 363 days suspended.

He also was ordered not to drive any vehicle without a DUI Interlock device, which does not allow the vehicle to start until he passes a breath test.

More in News

Sweet-smelling purple fields draw visitors to Peninsula

You can talk about the healing nature of lavender. It… Continue reading

PUD seeks Haffner replacement

A replacement is being sought for former longtime Clallam… Continue reading

Port Angeles council takes next step in hiring city manager

It’s official: Nathan West will be the next Port… Continue reading

Irondale Substation expansion to improve service, PUD says

An expansion of the Irondale Substation is expected to… Continue reading

NEWS BRIEFS: PT student chosen for program … and other items

Izzy Hammett of Port Townsend, has been selected to… Continue reading

Sequim VFW post aiming to stay open

The Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 4760 is managing to… Continue reading

All-night closures of Hood Canal Bridge start Sunday

SHINE – The Hood Canal Bridge will close for six continuous hours… Continue reading

Two vacancies on Jefferson County planning commission

Positions are open for the Jefferson County Planning Commission… Continue reading

Red Cross redistributes emergency resources across Olympic Peninsula

The Red Cross of Kitsap and Olympic Peninsulas hopes to… Continue reading

Most Read