It appears that many of the stories we find in the news these days involve accused drunken drivers who have become involved in a car or truck accident as a result of their alleged alcohol consumption or use of prescription medication (drug DUI). A smaller percentage of accidents also involve individuals accused of illegal drug use, such as marijuana or cocaine (otherwise known as controlled dangerous substances, or CDS for short).
Regardless of whether a motorist lives or works in Sussex, Monmouth, Ocean or Passaic County, the aftermath of a potential DWI or drug DUI conviction can haunt a person for years following the initial incident. For this very reason it is always a good idea to retain the services of a competent and qualified drunken driving defense lawyer, if only to determine what your options might be following a DWI arrest.
For those picked up by police for drunk driving as a first offense, it may seem too easy to accept the penalties and plead guilty, while under the false impression that only one DWI conviction will not cause too much upheaval in one’s life. Or those people who believe this is the best approach to a DWI-DUI arrest or summons, we couldn’t disagree more.
To start, accepting a guilty plea for a first-time drunken driving offense may seem to be the easiest way to go — and believe us, it is for the prosecuting attorney handling the case — this is not going to make one’s life easier. The penalties for a first offense may be slightly less than a second or third DWI offense, but the impact to one’s auto insurance rates as well as the potential damage to one’s personal and business reputations could be catastrophic.
It is always wise to have a first-time DWI offense handled with the help of an experienced DWI defense lawyer. If a drunk driving charge is coupled with a vehicular assault charge, or worse, one with serious injuries caused as a result, make that call immediately.
Not long ago there was a similar scenario that read as if a DWI lawyer was most likely called for. According to news reports, a number of pedestrians were hit by an allegedly drunk out-of-state driver in one of the parking lots at the Meadowlands Sports Complex. Based on police reports, the accident occurred on a Saturday morning just before noon following the 2011 quarterfinals of an international soccer event.
News reports indicated that there were two victims of the car-pedestrian crash that day. Police reports showed that a 2009 Mitsubishi Lancer hit one of the pedestrians with vehicle’s left front corner. According to the New Jersey State Police, the victim left the parking area without reporting the incident to police, however after allegedly contacting the first victim, 23-year-old Angel Gonzalezplaced the gear selector of his vehicle into reverse and then struck another pedestrian as his vehicle was backing up.
That second person, 40-year-old Ricardo Lazaro of Brooklyn, NY, was reportedly taken to Hackensack University Medical Center where he was admitted in critical condition with serious injuries, according to police reports.
Gonzalez was reportedly stopped by a New Jersey State Trooper after he left the stadium parking area. Police charged the man with DWI, assault by auto and leaving the scene of an accident with serious bodily injury. The court set the man’s bail at $30,000 and he was then taken to Bergen County Jail.
Pedestrians hit, driver charged in DWI accident, NorthJersey.com, June 23, 2011