It’s safe to say that for many motorists being pulled over due to one or another kind of moving violation will rarely lead to an actual arrest, yet there is a group of drivers who may not be as lucky when it comes their turn to be face to face with the law. Sometimes, the simplest of driving errors — such as making an improper turn, failing to signal when changing lanes or rolling through a stop sign — can actually result in an arrest.
While a number of scenarios could be attached to such an event, being a little tipsy or appearing somewhat intoxicated in front of the policeman in charge will most probably get a motorist in trouble with the law. Whether one is stopped by a state trooper, a city cop, or local municipal patrolman, the opportunity to receive a DWI summons, or worse, end up being arrested and held overnight in jail may be the result of just one drink too many followed by a drive home.
Whatever the initial cause of a drunk driving or drug DUI arrest, the end result — be it the monetary penalties or the potential loss of driving privileges — can come as a shock to most otherwise law-abiding citizens. It’s no secret that here in the Garden State an arrest for DWI-DUI can have a serious financial impact on many people, not to mention the possible social or professional embarrassment. It’s a fair bet that these days being convicted of drunken driving may ruin more than one’s reputation; marriages, careers and standing in the community can all be victims of a guilty verdict in a DWI case.
As New Jersey drunken driving defense lawyers, the professional legal team at my law firm understands what’s at stake for those accused of driving while intoxicated or impaired by prescription drugs or even illegal substances, like marijuana or cocaine. Having been a municipal prosecutor in the past, I myself know first-hand the kinds of tactics and legal strategies that the state may use to gain a drunk driving conviction.
Whatever the ultimate results of a drunk driving or drug DUI arrest, the events that precipitate such an episode may be as simple as failing to stay in one’s lane on the Garden State Parkway. In general, many motorists who are arrested for driving under the influence start their journey under very similar circumstances.
The following news items describe a number of traffic stops that ended in a DWI or DUI arrest. By illustrating these various drunk driving incidents, we hope to alert those readers to the downside of drinking and driving with the aim of preventing what might end up being a costly and potentially life-altering event. Take the first instance in which a Port Reading driver was charged with drunk driving after apparently being observed asleep at the wheel of her motor vehicle.
According to news articles, Roselle Park police officers responded to a report of a vehicle that was allegedly blocking traffic at the intersection of Locust St and W. Westfield Ave. Upon arriving at the scene, the patrolmen reportedly found a female motorist asleep in her car, which was apparently still in gear; the woman’s foot was still on the brake pedal holding the car in place on the roadway.
The officer in charge attempted to wake the lady, however he found her to be initially unresponsive. The officer was able to unlock the car door and then wake the woman up, thus avoiding a possible accident. The driver was given one of several standardized field sobriety tests, which one can only assume she did not pass, since the officer then arrested and charged her with DWI, as well as other moving violations. As an aside, the police also allegedly found three marijuana cigarettes inside the woman’s vehicle.
In another incident, a 31-year-old Plainfield, NJ, man was stopped by Garwood police officers and charged not only with driving while intoxicated, but also with possession of marijuana. The arrest came in the late evening after the man was pulled over by police along a stretch of South Ave. According to reports, the driver was observed by officers to be intoxicated. Upon further investigation, the driver was also found to be in possession of a quantity of marijuana, according to police.
In a third alcohol-related traffic incident, police arrived at the scene of a multi-vehicle collision along a stretch of New Bridge Road in the Bergenfield area. Police reports indicate that the early morning car crash was caused by the 22-year-old man from Teaneck, NJ. The driver was found outside of his wrecked SUV, which had allegedly hit three other cars, as well as a utility pole after jumping a curb.
The officers in charge reportedly detected a strong odor of alcohol on the driver’s breath, which then precipitated a request for the man to perform a field sobriety test. Police took the man into custody, charging him with DWI, failing to yield and reckless driving.
Plainfield man charged with DWI in Garwood, NJ.com, March 7, 2013
DWI in Bergenfield smash-up: 3 cars, 2 signs, utility pole, more; CliffviewPilot.com; March 6, 2013
Port Reading woman allegedly asleep at the wheel charged with DWI, NJ.com, March 01, 2013