DWI Charges in Weehawken, NJ
Weehawken sees its fair share of DWI cases. This is because the township acts a gateway to NYC with thousands of cars funneling in and out of the Lincoln Tunnel at all hours of the day and night. Port Authority Police are constantly on the look out for suspicious activity including erratic driving and signs of intoxication. It is common for them to stop drivers by waiving them down and having them pull over to the side. If the cops suspect you are intoxicated they will place you under arrest, bring you down the station and seek to collect a breath sample, blood, or urine from you depending on the circumstances. If there is probable cause to believe you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you will be issued a summons to appear in court at a later date and released. Weehawken is notorious among local attorneys for being one of the toughest towns in Hudson County when it comes to handling DWI cases. This is for several reasons. The cops always show up, the court staff is very organized and will normally provide all of the evidence very quickly and the prosecutor knows what they are doing. Long story short this can make for a nasty match up when it comes to defending your DWI case. That is why especially in a town like Weehawken you need someone in your corner that is experienced and is going to fight for you.
Is It Possible To Have Your Weehawken DWI Case Dismissed?
The short answer is Yes and we have accomplished that for multiple clients. But in order to understand the full extent of what is involved in defending a DWI case you first need to understand that New Jersey has some of the toughest punishments for DUI convictions throughout the country. For instance, there is no plea bargaining allowed and if your case goes to trial you are not afforded a jury. If convicted of a first offense with a high blood alcohol concentration, a second offense, or a third or subsequent offense, you will face a mandatory loss of license and potential jail time depending on the circumstances and there is no such thing as a hardship or work license in New Jersey. And if you risk driving while suspended for DWI and are caught, you will face mandatory county jail and an additional loss of your license from 1 – 2 years. Retaining an experienced DWI attorney to attack and challenge the State’s case against you is often your only option to try and avoid these penalties. As the firm’s founding attorney, Will Proetta, has successfully handled hundreds of DUI cases during his career and is certified by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration as an Instructor for Standard Field Sobriety Testing used in New Jersey and has separate training and certification from the manufacturer of the New Jersey breathalyzer, the Alcotest, on its operation and proper maintenance. Only a select handful of attorneys throughout the entire state have similar experience and certifications and this allows our law firm to pinpoint and often exploit any substantive and procedural issues in our client’s cases that can lead to the breath readings being suppressed or a dismissal of the DWI altogether. If you have been charged or arrest for DUI in Weehawken, contact our Jersey City office today to speak with an experienced DWI defense attorney at (201) 793-8018 for a free initial consultation.
What To Expect If You Have Been Arrested for DUI in Weehawken
If you are charged with a DWI in Weehawken you will be subpoenaed to appear in the Weehawken Township Municipal Court, which is located at 400 Park Avenue, Weehawken, NJ 07086. It is not uncommon to have to appear multiple times over a period of several months while the DUI charges are pending. Judge Lauren Olivieri oversees all DWI cases in Weehawken and it is her duty to decide if the municipal prosecutor and the police successfully prove their burden that the defendant operated the motor vehicle under the influence or drugs or alcohol and it impaired their ability. It is important you show up on the date and time specified on your court notice or a bench warrant will be issued for your arrest. If you would like to get it touch with the municipal court you can contact Karen Hablitz, the court administrator at (201) 319-6028 or by fax at (201) 806-6850.
DWI Hot Spots in Weehawken
|Most of the DUI stops and arrests in Weehawken take place on these highways and corridors
– Route 495: Entering or exiting the Lincoln Tunnel to New York City on the New Jersey side. Port Authority Officers, Weehawken Police, and State Troopers often stake out this roadway looking for intoxicated drivers going into or leaving the city.
– Willow Ave: This roadway is a popular route used by locals and out of towners alike to cut through on their way to and from Hoboken. It is also used for drivers trying to make their way to the New Jersey Turnpike or Route 3. The local police know this a popular road and will often be on the lookout for potential drunk drivers coming out of Hoboken on their to the city or back home.
How To Beat Your Weehawken DUI
Challenging and beating a DWI case is similar to pulling back the layers of an onion. In almost any case where the State is alleging that you operated a vehicle under the influence, they will rely on some type of chemical test such as breathalyzer, urine sample, blood draw or even a combination of them to prove intoxication. The results of that test are typically considered the strongest evidence against you because it is used to substantiate the police officer’s suspicions that they formed after they pulled you over or found you in the car and administered field tests on the side of the roadway. If you want to have any shot at beating the DWI case you need to successfully challenge the results of that test. So for instance, when you have an alcohol DWI with a breath reading, we will always look to see if the machine was not administered correctly by the officer or if the machine was not working properly at the time of your reading. If you can raise reasonable doubt as to either of those two issues then you can have the breath reading suppressed and the prosecutor loses their best piece of evidence against you. A suppression of the breath reading can not only substantially lessen your potential penalties but it will also bring you one step closer to getting a complete dismissal of your DUI. Just to provide some context, I would say that we see the breath readings suppressed approximately 80% of the time, so overall the chances are good that the reading can be suppressed. If your breath reading is suppressed, the prosecutor will typically only be able to rely on the field sobriety tests at the time of the stop to prove the DWI. These tests are normally used by the cop to form probable cause for an arrest on suspicion of drunk driving but in order to be convicted the judge would need to find you guilty beyond a reasonable doubt which is a much higher standard. Moreover, there are many variables that can affect your ability to properly balance including prior injuries, physical impairments, fatigue, etc. Best case scenario, if you are able to produce evidence of outside factors that affected your physical dexterity skills that night then the prosecutor may concede and move to dismiss the case because they can not prove the DWI against you without a reading. If the prosecutor will not concede the case, then by taking those steps you at least put yourself in a best position prior to the trial to potentially win.
Weehawken DWI Defense Attorney
Everyone hopes they never have to deal with a DWI case. By drinking responsibly, arranging alternate transportation such as Uber and avoiding the hot spots we mentioned above, hopefully you never have to be put in that position. But if you find yourself in Weehawken Municipal Court facing DUI charges then it is best that you find an experienced lawyer who won’t shy away from fighting on your behalf. Even a first offense for DWI in New Jersey can have harsh and long last effects of your life and driver’s license. For instance, if your BAC reading is 0.15% or above, then you will face a mandatory loss of your driver’s license for a period of 4 to 6 months and the requirement to install an ignition interlock in your car for up to 15 months after you get your license back. On the other hand, if you have been arrested for a drug DWI then you face a mandatory 7 to 12 month loss of your license. In either scenario, you also still face up to 30 days in the Hudson County Jail, $1,000 surcharge for 3 years through the New Jersey MVC, and 12 to 48 hours in the Intoxicated Driver Resource Program. If you have been charged with a DUI in Weehawken and have questions about what may happen and your potential options, feel free to contact our Jersey City office for a consultation at no charge with an experienced DWI defense lawyer at (201) 793-8018.
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