DWI Downgraded to Reckless Driving in New Jersey
June 28, 2020
Driving While Intoxicated charges, while technically not “criminal” offense, carry serious penalties in New Jersey. This applies whether you are facing a First Offense DWI, Second Offense DWI or Third Offense DWI. If found guilty, you could be facing mandatory driver’s license suspension, installation of ignition interlock device, thousands of dollars in fines and surcharges, mandatory attendance in the Intoxicated Driver Resource Center and even incarceration in the county jail.
Just in the past few days, our office resolved a case for a client who was originally charged with Driving While Intoxicated in Burlington County, New Jersey. This client was facing various other traffic violation but the most serious charge was for Driving While Intoxicated. The facts of the case were fairly straightforward. Our client was pulled-over for failing to maintain their lane of travel. The Officer alleged to have smelled an odor of marijuana and proceeded to remove our client from the vehicle and place them through a series of Field Sobriety Tests. Based on the Officer’s perceived observations, our client was arrested on suspicion of Driving While Under the Influence of Alcohol and taken to the police station to submit to a Alcotest (Breathalyzer). Based on the results of the Alcotest, our client was charged with Driving While Intoxicated and issued a summons to appear in court.
Over the next several months, our office engaged in extensive discovery and motion practice with the municipal prosecutor and the court that eventually resulted in the dismissal of the DWI charge and a plea to a separate less severe offense of Reckless Driving.
What Are the penalties for Driving While Intoxicated in New Jersey Right Now?
As of writing this blog, New Jersey is under a new set of laws and penalties for Driving While Intoxicated violations pursuant to NJSA 39:4-50. The changes in the law removed the mandatory license suspension for first time offenders who are charged with Driving While Intoxicated but have a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) below .15 percent. Instead, the mandatory suspension has been replaced with a mandatory installation of an ignition interlock device for a period of time ranging from three (3) months up to fifteen (15) months, depending on your BAC. Second and Third time offenders still face a mandatory suspension and installation of an ignition interlock device. For more information on these specific penalties, please contact our office at 609-850-8284.
Lawyers to Fight a NJ DWI Ticket
Proetta, Oliver & Fay is a criminal defense and DWI defense law firm that handles drunk driving charges throughout the state of New Jersey. Whether it is a charge for first offense DUI, second offense DUI, third offense DUI or Refusal to Submit to a Breathalyzer Test, contact our office to speak with an attorney immediately. We can be reached 24/7 for your convenience. Firm partner, William C. Fay, IV is a former New Jersey Deputy Attorney General. Contact Mr. Fay directly at 609-850-8284. Do not hesitate, every minute counts when fighting against the State in your traffic or criminal case.