New Jersey “Dry Towns” Have Higher Rates of Arrests

A DWI conviction has the potential to derail your life. If you have been arrested or charged with a DWI, you need an experienced New Jersey DWI attorney without delay. With years of experience, we understand the nuances of this area of law and how to challenge a DWI arrest. We are dedicated to protecting the rights of each and every one of our clients throughout the entire legal process.

A study of municipalities around New Jersey written by NJ.com found that some local police departments are much more assertive than others in enforcing these laws. You may be surprised to know that some New Jersey cities prohibit the sale of alcohol within city limits. In fact, more than 30 municipalities still forbid the sale of alcohol. Nationwide, approximately 18 million people live in dry areas, which make up about 10 percent of the land area in the U.S. Some of these people even live in “dry counties” but still see higher rates of deadly crashes and arrests.

Similarly, the rates of DWI arrests in these New Jersey “dry towns” are higher than similarly situated New Jersey cities that allow the sale of alcohol. Collingwood had 18 total DWI arrests in 2016, a 20 percent increase from 15 in the prior year. Wildwood Crest saw a significant spike in DWI arrests, jumping 63 percent from 27 in 2016 to 44 in 2017. Cities like Haddon Heights and Haddonfield experienced slightly decreased rates of DWI arrests from the prior year.

In New Jersey, the offense of a DWI consists of operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08 percent or greater. Under state law, a DWI arrest can be prosecuted under either of two theories:  driving while impaired (DWI) or a violation of the state’s per se laws. The former focuses on the motorist’s mental and physical ability to drive, while the latter focuses on a person’s BAC.

It is vital to remember that you have rights, and an arrest does not equal a conviction. The burden of proof in all DWI cases is on the state. There are a number of possible ways to challenge your charge. For example, an officer cannot stop a car without having a reasonable and articulable basis to believe that a law has been violated. If an officer stopped you arbitrarily, the charge may be based on a violation of your rights. Another defense to a DWI may be that a medical condition affected the results of your field sobriety tests. We can scrutinize the circumstances of your arrest to determine any and all defenses that may apply.

If you have a New Jersey drunk driving charge hanging over your head, you may be rightfully worried about a conviction. A DWI conviction, even for a first offense, can adversely affect many aspects of your life and should never be taken lightly. Your first step should be to call a seasoned New Jersey drunk driving attorney who can provide vigorous legal representation in your case. You can rest assured that we can build a strong defense on your behalf. For a free case evaluation, call us at 877-450-8301 or reach out to us online.

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