DUI Enforcement Update: NJ Sobriety Checkpoints Going Up Tonight, Anticipating St. Patrick’s Day Celebrants

As drunken driving defense attorneys representing New Jersey residents and other drivers accused of DWI or drug-related impaired driving (drug DUI), I and my legal team have more than 100 years of collective experience in defending individuals charged with operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol or a controlled dangerous substance (CDS).

As motorists ourselves, we are pleased to know that state police and local municipal law enforcement personnel are working hard to keep our roadways safe from all manner of traffic hazards and other dangers. And while we commend the law enforcement community for making our streets and highways safer, we can’t help but wonder whether the money spent and the efforts made are not sometimes directed toward innocent motorists are become the focus of drunk driving patrols and sobriety checkpoints for no other reason than a possibly minor traffic infraction.

As a former municipal prosecuting attorney, and now as a drunk driving defense lawyer, I know that from time to time there do occur unjustified drunken driving arrests. From my extensive experience, I do know that a percentage of DWI charges do not, in fact, hold up in court. For this reason, I am committed to representing individuals accused of DWI, drug DWI and breath-test refusal in Middlesex, Hudson, Ocean and Atlantic Counties.

Since tomorrow, St. Patrick’s Day, is traditionally known as one of the bigger drinking days, it should not come as any surprise that New Jersey police agencies will be out in force, patrolling the states roadways and looking for potentially drunk drivers. As a Toms River DWI defense lawyer, know how much funding goes into anti-drunken driving enforcement, which is embodied in the increased saturation patrols and multiple DWI roadblocks (also known as sobriety checkpoints).

According to new items, the Monmouth County DWI Task Force has announced a new sobriety roadblock being set up in the area this evening; and likely to be followed by others around the state during this coming weekend. Meant to flush out those drivers who may be driving while intoxicated — or otherwise impaired by beer, wine, hard liquor, prescription drugs or even illicit substances, such as meth, cocaine or marijuana — these checkpoints are designed to catch drivers and then check them for sobriety.

The checkpoint in question will take place in the town of Howell, NJ, in Monmouth County. According to the announcement placed today by the task force, the planned sobriety checkpoint will be in operation from 11pm tonight until 3am on Saturday morning — Saint Patrick’s Day — along a stretch of Rte 9 on the northbound side. Police officers from the task force, alone with patrolmen from the Howell Police Department, will be flagging drivers to pull over into parking lot of Regal Plaza.

While stopped, drivers will be interviewed and, if suspected of being impaired, they may be asked to exit their vehicles to complete one or more of the standardized field sobriety tests established by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Those who do not pass, may be arrested on suspicion of DWI and subjected to a breathalyzer test to determine their blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) before being charged and processed for drunk driving.

Not surprisingly, the NHTSA advises that anyone who may be thinking of driving this coming weekend take the necessary precautions to find a sober ride home, if necessary. In a statement, the NHTSA advised drivers not to rely on “dumb luck” this St. Patrick’s Day, but instead to plan ahead.

Monmouth County DWI Task Force in Howell tonight, APP.com, March 16, 2012