“If you have a DWI Attorney in New Jersey that knows how to attack the case that you’re facing, you can potentially avoid DWI penalties.”
1. Challenge The Probable Cause For the Vehicle Stoppage:
The police officer that pulls you over needs to have a valid reason for stopping your vehicle. Speeding, failure to maintain lane, a broken head or taillight, and a rear view mirror obstruction are perfectly valid reasons to pull you over. Now these stoppages aren’t always cut and dry. For example, if the officer thinks that you were speeding because it looked like you were going fast, but he has no radar reading, that stoppage can be challenged and potentially thrown out. If the stoppage itself is invalid, then anything the officer discovers afterwards it thrown out. This includes DWI charges, drug possession, gun possession, etc.
Forcing the State to prove probable cause for the stoppage frequently gives us a successful defense or at least a very strong platform to negotiate a plea.
2. Challenge The Use of the Alcotest 7110 Machine:
There are very few lawyers in the state of NJ that are certified to actually use the Alcotest 7110 machine, but I am. That means that I’m actually licensed to perform this test, and as a result, I can cross-examine the police officer that administered the test to you. If he answers questions incorrectly about the method in which he performed the test, you can have your case thrown out entirely. Police officers don’t do everything correctly, they make mistakes frequently, and we can take advantage of this tendency.
3. Challenge The 20 Minute Observation Period:
The arresting officer is required by law to observe you, in a room, by yourself, for 20 minutes before administering the Alcotest. The reason for this is that if a defendant chews gun, smokes a cigarette, burps, eats something, etc. this will affect the defendant’s mouth alcohol levels and could create a false reading on the breath testing machine.
If this 20 minute period is interrupted for any reason, (maybe you used the bathroom or the officer left the room) then the reading can’t be proven as valid and the case will be thrown out.
The timing and documentation of events in your arrest plays a huge role in the State’s ability to prosecute you. If the officer’s reported times just don’t add up, your charges can be dismissed. For example, if the officer claims that he pulled you over at 8:00 PM, arrested you at 8:03, and administered the Alcotest at 8:35, but the police station is 45 miles away, the times just don’t make sense. Those numbers can’t possibly exist.
Here’s a hypothetical series of questions that I might ask such an officer during a trial:
Me: “Did you observe the defendant for 20 minutes before administering the test?”
Officer: “Of course.”
Me: “How did you drive 45 miles and observe my client in 32 minutes?”
Me: “Based on my calculations, you must have been driving 180 miles per hour. Is that true?”
Me: “Is there anything accurate about your report officer?”
That’s a case that wouldn’t even make it to trial.
4. Challenging The Field Sobriety Test:
In order to actually arrest you for a DWI and hook you up to the most serious breath-testing device, the officer needs to establish probable cause for the arrest. This is typically done by making you perform a series of silly tests on the side of the road. You stand on one foot, walk a straight line, and do a few other random things that give an indication of your blood alcohol content. If you fail these tests, the officer has probable cause to arrest you.
Again, police officers aren’t perfect. Many times, they don’t explain the test correctly, they don’t count the times out loud correctly, and they just don’t hold true to the standardized procedure used to administer these tests. If this is the case, then the probable cause for your arrest doesn’t exist, and as a result the readings on the Alcotest machine are inadmissible. Your case is dismissed.
These are just a few of the ways that I fight DWI cases, but in reality there are many ways that this can be done. All of my strategies are determined by a case-by-case basis. The details surrounding your arrest need to be examined carefully and run through with a fine-toothed comb. Once this has been done, we can work as a team to get you the best possible result in your DWI case.
For more information, or to discuss your case, please feel free to contact me at any time.
Travis J. Tormey Esq.
Phone: (201) 556-1571