This story is a perfect example of why I choose to practice in the areas of Criminal Law and Family Law in Alabama. Sometimes the lines between these practice areas are so blurry that it is difficult to see where one ends and the other begins. From the information given, there are some difficulties that Mr. Dutcher would face if making this claim and using the defense of entrapment in Alabama. I think that it would be necessary for him to prevail on the criminal charge in order to get back to even footing in the domestic case, therefore, I will focus on the DUI case in this blog entry. Entrapment is codified in Alabama under Section 13A-3-31 of the Code of Alabama. Basically, the code section states that Alabama adopts the caselaw view of entrapment. As a defense, entrapment is generally recognized to mean that an officer of the law, or someone acting as a law officer persuaded the defendant to commit a crime that the defendant would not otherwise have committed. In this case, Mr. Dutcher would have to prove that these women were 1) officers of the law or somehow acting on behalf of officers, and 2) that they coerced him into driving under the influence of alcohol when he otherwise would not have done so. Entrapment is a difficult defense to use but very effective if it can be proven. One interesting note is that when the defendant puts forth an entrapment defense, they create a burden to prove the elements where normally a defendant has no burden of proof in a criminal case whatsoever.
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