Articles Posted in Essex County DWI Defense

From Patterson to Edison, and Trenton on down the Jersey Shore, police all across the Garden State will be working overtime looking for drunk drivers this coming Labor Day holiday. As part of this annual effort to rein in any number of intoxicated celebrants and other drivers operating their vehicles while under the influence of alcohol, doctor-prescribed meds, or illegal substances (drug DUI), the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign is already in effect.

Running from August 15 through September 1, dozens of police departments throughout the state have received funding for additional manpower to thwart errant drunken drivers during the holiday weekend and the days leading up to it. As New Jersey DWI defense lawyers, my legal staff knows that the stakes can be quite high for those motorists who are charged with driving while intoxicated. These days, the fines, fees and mandatory insurance premium increases can total in the thousands of dollars, which can cause significant hardship on some individuals if convicted of DWI-DUI.

As long-time DWI-DUI defense attorneys, my colleagues and I firmly believe that our system of law was created to provide a balance between the police who arrest and charge individuals and the defendants who believe they were unjustly accused. Getting one’s day in court, however, will usually be used to best advantage if a person consults with a skilled trial attorney first, before ever stepping foot inside that courtroom.
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As Garden State drunk driving attorneys, we understand how even a single DWI or drug DUI conviction can have a ripple effect through a person’s personal and professional life. And while drinking and driving may cause serious consequences for the average commuter, not the least of which is the complication of getting around without the use of a car for months on end, the story can be much worse for a professional driver where the loss of driving privileges can severely affect his or her ability to earn a living.

As experienced New Jersey DWI defense lawyers, my legal team is well aware of the thousands of dollars that can be on the line when a motorist is facing a conviction for intoxicated driving, but as we mentioned previously, a professional truck or bus driver who loses his or her commercial driver’s license (or CDL) may be looking at a dim future, certainly in the short run. For individuals like the Essex County man who is currently under investigation for his part in the crash of two double-decker tour buses in Manhattan recently, the threat of losing one’s CDL, and hence one’s livelihood, can be nothing short of catastrophic.

According to the news articles that are popping up on the internet following the much publicized bus collision in Times Square this past Tuesday, the New Jersey man who was piloting one of the vehicles may have been high on some kind of controlled dangerous substance (CDS) at the time of the wreck. Based on reports, while there was no evidence that the bus driver had consumed alcohol prior to the collision, police did take the man into custody after he allegedly failed a field sobriety test at the scene.
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Over the years, getting behind the wheel of a motor vehicle while possibly intoxicated has become more and more risky from a legal standpoint here in the Garden State. Not only is driving drunk dangerous from a traffic safety point of view, but the chances of being caught and prosecuted have been rising for those who take the chance that they may be legally drunk.

Whether one drives near the Jersey Shore or farther inland, police throughout the Garden State will be participating in the so-called “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign, a nationwide drunk driving enforcement effort beginning on August 15 and running through September 1. As New Jersey DWI defense lawyers, my colleagues and I have represented numerous clients over the years who have been stopped for what seemed like a simple traffic infraction only to fine themselves arrested and charged with drunk driving.

Needless to say, the stakes can be quite high these days, as those motorists who are convicted of DWI or drug DUI face thousands of dollars in fines, fees and mandatory insurance premium increases. This upcoming campaign will likely include enhanced DWI-DUI road patrols, plus additional sobriety roadblocks and DWI checkpoints. As usual, this late summer enforcement effort is timed to coincide with the Labor Day holiday, a time of year that is known for its parties and special events where individuals often consume alcoholic beverages and then sometimes get behind the wheel in an impaired state.
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As long-time Garden State drunken driving defense lawyers, my colleagues and I have seen just about everything over the nearly 100 years of our combined legal careers. In our capacity as litigators for New Jersey motorists, representing individuals accused of intoxicated driving or drug DUI has given us more than a little insight into the variety of alcohol-, prescription drug- and illegal substance-related traffic arrests. Quite simply, we understand the many and varied ways that drivers can be stopped and charged with driving under the influence.

For most motorists, at least those served with summonses or arrested for an alcohol- or drug-related offense, the usual scenario does not involve a serious traffic accident. In many instances, a driver will have been stopped after being observed making some kind of simple driving error or even a more overt moving violation, such as speeding, improper passing or running a red light.

It is only after one of these routine traffic stops that a police officer may question the driver regarding his activities prior to the stop. Although New Jersey law prohibits a patrolman from stopping a motorist purely on a “hunch” that the driver is inebriated, once stopped at the roadside, the line of questioning may lead to suspicion of drinking and driving, or even some kind of drug-related DUI.
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Being stopped by a New Jersey State Police officer or local cop for a traffic offense can be unnerving enough for most people without the added concern of being arrested for DWI. As Garden State drunken driving defense lawyers, my firm is all too aware of the emotions that can come to the surface when faced with a summons for driving under the influence. Often frightening, and certainly unsettling, the experience of being taken into custody is only overshadowed by the potential financial impact that a DWI or drug DUI conviction can have on an individual or his family.

The state of New Jersey has long since banned plea bargaining as a common avenue to having a drunk driving charge dismissed or downgraded. Because of this, many people might wonder why they should even consider retaining a DWI attorney at all. First and foremost, an experienced legal expert can look for flaws in the state’s case, which can range from the way the police officer conducted the traffic stop prior to the DWI arrest, to the procedures followed or skipped after the driver submitted to a breathalyzer device in order to determine his or her blood-alcohol concentration (BAC).

When asking why one should hire a lawyer for a DWI or drug DUI defense, it may be more important to ask what the secret to success is when it comes to avoiding a conviction. At the very least, someone accused of driving drunk should contact a qualified professional to determine if fighting a drunk driving summons would be fruitful or if a downgrade is possible. In our experience, identifying any potential issues that may undermine the state’s ability to prove the DWI-DUI offense is a key objective when discussing a defendant’s options going forward.
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Well it is true that here in New Jersey, many drivers are all too familiar with the seemingly ever-present police patrols on our highways and surface streets. And while few law-abiding citizens would complain about the benefits of having a well-policed and safe society, from the standpoint of potential erroneous drunken driving arrests or drug DUI charges based on insufficient or improperly gained evidence, many people might be thinking enough is enough.

The fact of the matter is that New Jersey law enforcement authorities frequently receive funding for anti-drunken driving campaigns when certain seasons roll around. As motorists ourselves, we are happy to have safer roadways, but this sometimes comes at the expense of innocent individuals accused of an illegal act such as driving while intoxicated or operating a motor vehicle while impaired by prescription medications.

As Garden State DWI and drug DUI defense attorneys, my legal team understands how easily a motorist can end up being stopped for a simple traffic infraction only to find herself being taken to police headquarters for a breath test and possible incarceration for the night. Any time a motorist is stopped by a police officer, the stress of such an event can cause nervousness and an overall unsettled feeling. It’s no surprise that many people are suspected of being intoxicated simply on the basis of their nervous mannerisms during such a potentially intimidating experience.
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There is no dispute that the Christmas and New Year’s Day holidays are a time of great celebration for families, friends and neighbors all across the Garden State. Yet, even those in the know are sometimes surprised by the number of New Jersey motorists who find themselves on the receiving end of a drunk driving summons at this time of the year.

To be quite frank, when it comes to drinking and driving, state and local police officers will hardly be in a festive mood if they suspect you’ve been imbibing a little too much spiked eggnog or other intoxicating beverage. Whether one is celebrating with relatives, good friends or coworkers, if you get pulled over after having a drink or two, you may find that the patrolman in charge believes that it is better to give than to receive. Just remember few will envy your gift of a DWI-DUI summons this holiday season.

All levity aside, being arrested and charged with driving while intoxicated can result in expensive and potentially disruptive penalties. Hundreds or even thousands of dollars in fines, fees and assessments can be accompanied by license suspension, and even jail time depending on the circumstances; and the odds of facing such an outcome can be increased during certain times of the year when the frequency of anti-drunk driving saturation patrols and DWI-DUI sobriety roadblocks are on the rise.
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The skilled attorneys at the Law Office of Jonathan F. Marshall have successfully defended motorists arrested for and charged with drunk driving, drug DUI, breath test refusal and other alcohol and prescription drug-related offenses in Monmouth, Sussex, Middlesex and Union counties. Our commitment to our clients is demonstrated by the aggressive and vigorous defense; and our legal staff is knowledgeable in all aspects of New Jersey DWI law, criminal statutes and offenses involving drug DUI and possession in a motor vehicle.

As Garden State DWI-DUI defense lawyers, we understand how frightening a drunk driving arrest can be to the average person; if only because most drivers who are charged with a first-time offense for operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol are likely law-abiding individuals with families and good standing in their community.

Unfortunately, law enforcement personnel are usually more interested in whether a crime or civil offense has been committed and less about the background of the alleged offender; that is something for a judge to consider when the case comes to trial. As attorneys, we endeavor to pursue the facts and present our client’s case in the best possible light, while working to call into question the prosecution’s arguments and evidence that is being used against the defendant.
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Nobody ever said that being arrested and charged with a DWI was going to be a pleasant experience. For most people, getting a drunk driving summons or being held in jail overnight to “dry out” can not only be an embarrassing experience, but it can also be rather frightening. This is especially true when one begins to consider the repercussions of such an encounter with the possibility of a conviction and any associated penalties; those fines, fees and statutory assessments can run in the thousands of dollars, which makes a drunken driving arrest potentially costly from a financial standpoint as well.

For the record, the state of New Jersey has for some time banned the legal practice of plea bargaining for those defendants who are facing charges of driving while intoxicated. This is generally the case, unless there is some serious legal issue at stake or if there is a major flaw in the prosecution’s case. Barring a genuine legal issue, judges are barred from entertaining any thought of a dismissal or even the downgrading of a drunk driving charge.

As professional DWI defense attorneys, we know that the secret to success in avoiding a conviction (or in winning a downgrade in a defendant’s charges) is identifying certain key issues that reduce the strength of the state’s arguments. This is where our firm’s unique DWI law training and trial experience can prove invaluable. At my firm, the attorneys who make up the Jonathan F. Marshall legal defense team have credentials that are, quite frankly, second to none.
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For those motorists who have already taken note of the increased number of municipal and state patrol officers plying the Garden State Parkway, highways and surface streets this summer, get ready for more of the same this coming holiday weekend. Police presence on New Jersey roadways this summer, as with most every past year, has been fairly obvious, if only because of the anti-DWI and DUI enforcement that comes with warmer weather and summertime revelers; but Labor Day will be especially active from the standpoint of drunk driving enforcement.

As DWI defense lawyers whose job it is to represent drivers accused of operating a motor vehicle while impaired by alcohol, refusing a breathalyzer test, or possessing a controlled dangerous substance (CDS) in their vehicle, the skilled attorneys at my law firm have the legal experience to help defendants get through a DWI case and on with their lives.

During the summer months, as well as various holidays throughout the year, police departments in many New Jersey towns and municipalities step up their drunken driving patrols, as well as conduct random sobriety checkpoints in areas well-known for DWI-related arrests and accidents. As with most of these anti-DWI campaigns, the “Drive Sober, or Get Pulled Over” anti-DWI campaign currently in effect entails increased police patrols (aka “saturation” patrols) and even some DUI roadblocks, all of which will probably net dozens of unsuspecting drivers who may or may not be legally intoxicated.
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