Police in New York take driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI) violations seriously. In fact, over 100 people were arrested in Long Island for alleged DUI violations over this past holiday weekend.
This large arrest rate is due to increased DUI enforcement efforts. The efforts are funded in part by a recent grant, the Stop DWI campaign grant. Funds from this grant have been used to increase patrols.
These patrols are translating to arrests...lots of arrests.
DUI convictions in New York are serious. Penalties can be harsh.
Those who face DUI charges should take the charges seriously. A conviction can result in serious penalties, including hefty monetary fines, a suspended driver's license and potential imprisonment. These are just the criminal penalties. Additional social penalties can result from the presence of a criminal record. This can include difficulties getting housing, employment and scholarships.
Don't let an arrest get you down. You have options.
It is important to note that a charge does not automatically translate to a conviction. Defenses to these charges are available. Three possibilities include:
- The stop. Police officers are required to follow strict requirements when making a stop. Unless part of a checkpoint, the stop cannot be random. Officers must have a reason to pull the car over. If the officer cannot justify the stop, it may be illegal.
- The search. Once the car is stopped, officers have further instructions on when and how they can conduct a search. If not followed, the search is illegal.
- The evidence. From the breath test results to finding evidence within the vehicle, a number of things can go wrong while collecting evidence that could make it ineligible in court. Breath tests, for example, must be conducted correctly with carefully calibrated devices. A failure to do so can lead to an inaccurate and ineligible result.
A failure to follow any of the rules pertaining to these three areas can lead to a reduction or even dismissal of charges.
These are just the three first things an attorney would likely review when building a defense against DUI charges. Additional defenses are available. Contact an experienced DUI attorney to discuss your options.