Following a potentially deadly early-morning single-vehicle accident in Chatham Township, a Morristown man was arrested and charged with drunken driving. This kind of accident and subsequent DWI arrest is not uncommon, though in this case the man was perhaps lucky that he made it out alive. As a New Jersey drunk driving defense attorney, my main concern is to see that motorists get a fair shake in court.
The apparent drunk driving incident in question occurred around 1:30am in mid April, according to news accounts. Police had responded to a report of an overturned vehicle laying in the brook on Loantka Way in Chatham. Based on police investigation following the accident, the 37-year-old driver allegedly hit a utility pole with his car and then rolled into the nearby brook.
Shawn Beckler of Morristown had reportedly been traveling along Loantaka Way from Shunpike Road toward Spring Valley Road when he apparently failed to negotiate a curve in the roadway. Traveling straight, Beckler’s vehicle struck a utility pole before hitting a fence and a stand of trees, then overturning and ending on its hood in the brook.
Officers arriving on the scene observed fallen electrical wires at the initial impact site. Following the damage to the brook, Officers Patrick Meade and Christopher Slayton located the car with the suspect still inside. According to police reports, Beckler was partially trapped underneath the vehicle.
Emergency crews from the Green Village Fire Department worked extricate the man, who was then taken to Morristown Memorial Hospital by the Chatham Emergency Squad for non-life threatening injuries. Based on news reports, Beckler was charged with DWI, reckless driving and failure to keep right.
Morristown man is charged with drunken driving after his car lands in a Chatham Township brook, NJ.com, April 15, 2010