As anyone familiar with the Garden State criminal and civil law will know, operating a motor vehicle while impaired by alcohol, doctor-prescribed medication and even illicit drugs like marijuana or cocaine are all offenses seriously frowned upon by state and local law enforcement agencies. This is actually an understatement, since police are constantly patrolling the streets of Monmouth, Sussex, Atlantic and Hudson counties watching for drivers who are operating their vehicles in an erratic manner.
Although a patrolman cannot stop a driver simply on a hunch that he or she is intoxicated by beer or wine or high on drugs, if that driver errs in any way that provides the officer an opportunity to pull that motorist over for a traffic infraction, the jig as they say may be up — at least initially. As New Jersey DWI defense attorneys, I and my staff of experienced drunken driving lawyers have decades of cumulative experience in defending those accused of driving while under the influence of alcohol or a controlled dangerous substance (CDS).
Impaired driving can take the form of any number of scenarios in which a driver may exhibit signs of drunkenness or drug-related impairment. And while drinking beer, wine or hard liquor is not strictly against the law — except of minors — excessive consumption mixed with operating a motor vehicle can be grounds for a DWI arrest. And hardly a day goes by that we don’t hear of a handful of DWI arrests or drunk driving summonses being issued to New Jersey residents; which is to say that anyone who has been arrested for DWI or drug DUI is, for lack of a better phrase, in good company.
Driver in New Jersey likely get stopped for traffic offenses rather frequently, if only due to the high volume of vehicle traffic throughout the state. What precipitates after that initial police stop can be anything from a simple warning to a full-blown arrest with the driver being placed into a patrol car in handcuffs. The following is a selection of DWI and drug-related arrests reports from Morris and Burlington counties.
Montville Township Arrests
According to police, a 22-year-old Fairfield resident was parked suspiciously in a car when he was arrested for possession of weed. A call to the Montville Twp. police department by a concerned citizen brought police to a local restaurant when they saw the suspect toss something on the ground as the officers approached. Apparently later determined to have been a cannabis cigarette, the individual was issued a summons for possession and subsequently released.
An underage teen from the Towaco area was stopped on a Friday for speeding in the vicinity of Bonnieview Ln. and Old Ln. Montville officers reportedly observed the man’s car going 38mph in a 25 zone before pulling the driver over. Apparently exhibiting signs of intoxication, the 19-year-old was charged with exceeding the posted speed limit as well as being served with a summons for underage drunken driving.
A car allegedly being driven erratically by a 22-year-old Fords, NJ, resident was stopped by a mobile patrol men along a stretch of Rte 46 on a Saturday. Officers reported that they saw the suspect’s vehicle swerving in and out of the shoulder of the roadway. During the traffic stop, officers saw what was described as a crackpipe, reportedly in clear view of the patrolmen. A subsequent search of the man’s vehicle revealed two decks of heroin. The man was arrested by police and taken into custody. He was reportedly issued a summons and later released pending a court hearing.
Burlington County Arrests
Police arrested and charged a 39-year-old Moorestown resident with possession of drug paraphernalia after the woman was stopped by police for an apparently routine traffic violation. The incident took place on a portion of Academy Drive in the early morning hours. Based on police reports, the driver was charged and subsequently released pending an appearance in municipal court.
A Marlton motorist was stopped by police around 3:30am after officers observed the driver committing a traffic offense along a stretch of Rte 38 in the Moorsetown area. Officers making the traffic stop apparently noticed that the driver was exhibiting signs of impairment during their interview with the suspect. The 41-year-old man was arrested and charged with DWI. He was later released pending a hearing date at the municipal courthouse.
Police: Man Caught Stealing Used Cooking Oil, Patch.com, May 16, 2012
Police: Serial Car Key-er Causes $13K in Damages, Patch.com, May 12, 2012