“This page gives you some background on a DWI case that I defeated recently. Similar loopholes could apply to your case, and allow us to have it dismissed.”
Please feel free to call my office to see if similar laws might apply to your motor vehicle stoppage. Also, please check our Strategy Video section, to see our series on How To Beat DWI Charges. For any other questions that you might have on NJ DWI charges, please click here.
Police officers don’t always pull you over for the legitimate reasons. If the circumstances of your vehicle stop are unconstitutional, your case can be thrown out. In this case, I was able to prove the unconstitutionality of a DWI stop.
Here’s an interesting legal tidbit: DWI stops can’t be “random”. This means that the police can’t just decide on any given Friday to put up a roadblock with some flares and just start sniffing around inside the driver side window of any passing car. There actually has to be written notice of these stops, otherwise the stop itself is considered an invalid reason to pull you over, and you get out of trouble.
Every now and then, the police will try to find loopholes around these basic procedures, to catch more people doing things they shouldn’t be doing. Here’s an example:
Police can set up a seal-belt checkpoint, where they should theoretically be checking to make sure that the folks passing by are wearing their seat belts. In this case they should be looking into the car, checking for the belt, and if it’s not fastened they can pull you over and give you a ticket. They should ONLY be checking seatbelts.
They CAN’T just pull over every single person that passes by and strike up a random conversation. Like, “Hey you sound a little funny, how about saying the alphabet backwards while standing on one foot for as long as you possibly can?” The stop is only supposed to pertain to those violating seat-belt related laws.
If the police conduct this “seat-belt stop” as if it’s a random DWI stop, they are cheating the system. Again, all DWI stops are supposed to be announced in a community publication.
We won such a case recently when a young girl was heading home from a Brad Paisley concert where she had been drinking. The legal limit in NJ for blood alcohol content is 0.08 percent. The same is not the case for anyone under the age of 21. If you drink ANYTHING before you are officially “of age” and it registers on a Breathalyzer, you are immediately guilty of an underage DWI. It doesn’t matter how insanely low the number is. If you’re not old enough to drink legally, you get the penalty. My client was not legally drunk, but she was going to suffer the same penalties.
Well, the young girl was pulled over and after speaking to her for a few minutes and after asking where she had come from etc., the police conducted a Breathalyzer and the girl was immediately arrested.
The one thing the girl was NOT issued was a seat-belt ticket. Since she was pulled over randomly while actually wearing a seat belt, it’s easy to see the purported reasoning had nothing to do her vehicles stoppage. Call it a DWI stop in disguise!
The fact that everyone was getting pulled over, whether or not they were wearing a seat belt, revealed that this was a veiled “DWI” checkpoint, and as a result of it’s nondisclosure (it wasn’t listed in the paper or announced in any form) every stop associated with this stop could have been completely thrown out
Fortunately, these charges were dropped, though I’m sure the girl was still grounded like any other teenager in such a situation.
There are legal protocols that our police are expected to abide by. When the enforcers of our laws start taking their own liberties, it must be challenged to uphold the constitution.
For a free consultation on your case, please call The Tormey Law Firm and (201) 556-1571. If you are looking for a DWI Attorney New Jersey, our firm can give you the representation that you need.