New Jersey Drunk Driving (DWI) and Driving Under the Influence (DUI) Defense Attorney
As a former assistant Essex County prosecutor for ten years and a former Caldwell, NJ police officer for fifteen, I know how to spot defects in a drunk driving (DWI) and driving under the influence (DUI) police report. This experience can be huge in acquiring a downgrade if not an outright dismissal of a DWI or DUI charge. A vigorous challenge to the police report can be the difference between keeping your license, or losing it. Sometimes the police report defect is in the field sobriety test methods. Sometimes it’s the way the blood or breath was taken or analyzed. Sometimes it’s the machinery, or even the certification of the person giving the test. Sometimes it is the lawfulness of the motor vehicle stop itself.
Let it be known: If you are convicted of a DWI offense, you will lose your license. The period of suspension will depend on several factors, including your BAC (Blood Alcohol Content), and whether this is your first DWI conviction. The NJ Supreme Court has issued a directive to the Municipal Courts directing that a DWI ticket not be dismissed as part of a plea to some other charge. Under most circumstances, you will have to either plead guilty to the violation or fight the ticket. Before deciding whether to plea or go to trial, you need to understand what legal issues can impact a Drunk Driving ticket, and whether these issues exist in your case.
If you are issued a DWI summons, consult with an experienced criminal defense lawyer before deciding how to resolve your ticket. Call Howard Bailey at 973-982-1200 for a free consultation.
Defending a DWI / DUI Charge
In a DWI prosecution, the prosecutor can use two different methods to prove you were driving while under the influence of an alcoholic beverage. As part of the street-side investigation, the police will observe your physical appearance and your ability to perform field sobriety tests. Based on these observations alone, a Court can find you guilty of Drunk Driving. Once you are arrested on suspicion of being under the influence, you will be administered a breath test at the police station. If the test results in a BAC of .08 or higher, the prosecutor can use the reading to establish that you were operating the vehicle while intoxicated.
In a recent case, Howard Bailey represented a client charged with operating under the influence and causing an accident that hospitalized the client. Based on the defense investigation, it was proved that the client had been to a party and only served the liquor to others without consuming any. The odor of alcoholic beverages was on his clothing, from spilled drinks. The DWI summons was dismissed by the prosecutor.
In another recent case, Mr Bailey represented a client charged with DWI, who was unconscious at the scene of an accident and taken to the hospital. Based on observations at the scene, the officers charged him with DWI and his blood was drawn to establish what his BAC was. The defense investigation established that the only observations to support the suspicion of DWI was the odor of an alcoholic beverage in the cab of the truck. There were no observations of the odor coming from the client. Based on this defect, the blood test results were suppressed and the charge was dismissed.
Drunk Driving Consequences
There are both direct and collateral consequences to a DWI conviction. Under current law you are facing a mandatory loss of license, a potential jail sentence, and large fines. There are many issues that can impact the proof the State will need to convict you of Drunk Driving. If you are issued a DWI summons, consult immediately with an experienced criminal defense lawyer to discuss what issues may impact your case.
Contact Howard Bailey at 973-982-1200 for a free consultation.