Arrest details released during Giruzzi suppression hearing

Former Oneida County STOP DWI coordinator, Tom Giruzzi, appeared in Utica City Court for a pre-trial suppression hearing. Giruzzi is accused of driving under the influence of drugs.

Posted: Nov 25, 2019 7:03 PM
Updated: Feb 17, 2020 1:21 PM

UTICA, N.Y. - Former Oneida County STOP-DWI coordinator, Tom Giruzzi, appeared in Utica City Court for a pre-trial suppression hearing. Giruzzi is accused of driving under the influence of drugs.

Giruzzi's attorney, David Longeretta, previously filed motions to suppress evidence collected in relation to charges of driving while ability impaired by drugs.

Longeretta says Giruzzi had been unlawfully detained and denied access to an attorney before submitting a blood test. He also says there was no probable cause at the time of Giruzzi's arrest.

Two witnesses testified during Monday's suppression hearing, an investigator with the Oneida County Sheriff's Office, Richard Stanek, who arrested Giruzzi in March, and Hollie Silverman, the drug recognition expert, or DRE from the Rome Police Department.

Stanek says he received a call from a Sargent with the narcotics unit and he told him Giruzzi was a target he had was doing surveillance on. The Sargent told Stanek he would need his own probable cause to conduct a traffic stop.

Stanek says Giruzzi was stopped for being on his cell phone. When he pulled him over, he says he was fidgety and he smelled alcohol. He asked him to step out of the car and complete a sobriety test, during that test he says he saw a white, powdery substance in Giruzzi's nose.

Stanek says upon observation, Giruzzi failed that sobriety test and was arrested. Stanek testified that Giruzzi later admitted that he had done cocaine but passed his BAC test.

While Giruzzi was in custody, the DRE came in to evaluate him.

The defense is arguing that the DRE should've done their evaluation before placing Giruzzi under arrest.

Giruzzi's attorney says he had been unlawfully detained and denied access to an attorney before submitting a blood test.

The defense is asking for the arrest, the blood test, and DWI charges to be dismissed so they can't be used during trial.

Judge John Gannon did not yet rule on the hearing, the case will be back in Utica City Court Jan. 8.

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