Charged With a Third Offense of DWI in Edison NJ
If this is your third or subsequent DWI offense, you hardly need telling that a DWI conviction can work serious consequences on your life. If this one, however, has occurred in or around the major roads of Edison Township, namely Routes 1, 18, 287, or the New Jersey Turnpike, we can help. Here at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, our attorneys have over 100 years of collective experience defending against DWI charges in Edison Township Municipal Court on first offense, second offense, and even third or subsequent offenses of New Jersey’s DWI statute. Let us put that experience to use for you by giving us a call today for a free consultation with an experienced attorney about the circumstances of your traffic stop.
Edison Township Third DUI Offense
Under N.J.S.A. 39:4-50, a person can be convicted of DWI where the prosecution is able to prove to essential elements, operation of a motor vehicle and intoxication. The operational element, while rarely in dispute, is proven in one of three ways. First, the prosecution can show through direct evidence, i.e. an officer witnessed you driving before they pulled you over, that you were operating a motor vehicle. Secondly, the prosecution, though perhaps without direct evidence, can satisfy their burden if you or someone else in the vehicle tells them that you were operating the vehicle prior to the stop. Lastly, with circumstantial evidence, i.e. evidence that, while not direct evidence, allows the prosecution to create a presumption of operation, the prosecution may also satisfy their burden. It is also worth noting that in some cases, this operational element is not necessary. This are the “intent to operate” cases. Where an officer sees a noticeably intoxicated person attempt to get behind the wheel of a vehicle, the law does not require him to wait for the person to actually drive off to make an arrest.
The intoxication element similarly can be proven in three ways: Field Sobriety Testing, a Breath Test, or a Blood Test. Field sobriety testing is familiar to most people as those tests you do on the side of the road that ask you to state the alphabet backwards, walk a straight line, balance on one foot, etc. Law enforcement officials, however, prefer to rely on the more scientifically accurate tests to uphold their arrests. The breathalyzer used in the State of New Jersey is the Alcotest 7110 and it’s results are deemed to be scientifically reliable in a court of law after the New Jersey Supreme Court’s landmark decision in State v. Chun. However, these results are only admissible if officers follow a particular set of instructions mandated by law. The failure to do so renders the test unreliable and the results inadmissible. The blood draw test, while it may be used, is a secondary method to the breath test, which is preferred.
If the prosecution is able to establish these elements, however, the results of a third or subsequent DWI conviction are severe. The most noticeable and hard-hitting of these is the loss of the right to operate a motor vehicle for 10 years. An individual is also required to serve 180 days in jail, pay a fine of $1,000, and an annual surcharge of $1,500, not $1,000, for three years.
Edison NJ DWI Lawyer for a Third Offense
With so much on the line, a potential loss of license for ten years and up to 6 months in prison, you cannot afford to fight these charges alone. With a number of former prosecutors and criminal defense attorneys, who have been practicing for decades, on staff, we know the ins and outs of this offense and how best to ensure that you neither face lengthy incarceration or the prospect of being immobile for ten years. Please do not hesitate to contact us to learn what we can do for you on your Edison Township DWI case.