FIGHTING CHARGES OF DRUNK DRIVING IN NEW YORK
DWI/ DUI has become very prevalent, so law enforcement officers are quick to pull over suspicious drivers for a DWI/ DUI investigation. Oftentimes, officers can be a little too eager to arrest someone for intoxicated driving. If you’ve been arrested on charges of DWI/ DUI, you may have more grounds for defense than you realize.
UNLAWFUL POLICE STOPS
Before an officer can make a DWI/ DUI arrest, he or she must have valid grounds to pull the suspect over for an investigation. Officers may not pull someone over “just because” they feel like it; they must have a valid reason to believe that you may be intoxicated. Witnesses can call in tips to the police department when they see a suspected drunk driver, which allows an officer to make a lawful police stop. Otherwise, an officer can only pull you over if they witness signs of intoxication themselves. These signs can include:
- Failure to maintain lane
- Excessive speed
- Ignoring traffic signs and signals
- Driving without headlights
- Any other unusual driving behavior
If you were pulled over by an officer who had no grounds to do so, a skilled DWI Lawyer can build a strong case in your defense.
POLICE MISCONDUCT IN DWI INVESTIGATIONS
You could also have grounds for defense if your arresting officer made a mistake during the investigation. Standard field sobriety tests (SFSTs) are often used by officers to test your motor skills and divided attention abilities. Tests such as the walk and turn, following the officer’s finger with your eyes, or standing on one leg while counting out loud can help an officer determine whether or not you are truly intoxicated. These tests must be instructed properly and administered by the police officer with precision or the results are not reliable. In addition, these tests can be affected by fatigue, nerves, and preexisting medical conditions. An officer must take great care to conduct these tests correctly in order to make an accurate judgment of your level of intoxication. Jonathan B. Manley has been trained by senior police officers on the proper method to instruct and administer these tests and has the experience to challenge them in a courtroom.
Blood alcohol concentration (BAC) tests can also be mishandled by an officer. Breathalyzer machines are delicate and must be properly calibrated before each and every use. If your officer failed to calibrate the machine, give you proper directions, or administer the breath test correctly, then the readings could result in a false positive. Even a blood test can result in a false positive if it is mishandled or contaminated in the lab.
PENALTIES FOR DWI IN NEW YORK
The penalties for DWI in New York include either a misdemeanor or a felony conviction on your record, as well as a mark on your driving record. Your license will be suspended or revoked and you will receive points on your driving record that may result in further suspension or a revocation of your license. The penalties for a first or subsequent DWI/ DUI in New York are as follows:
- First DWI:
- Up to 1 year in jail
- Three years probation
- Fine of $500 – $1,000
- 6-month minimum license suspension
- Ignition Interlock
- Second DWI:
- Class E felony
- 5 days – 4 years in jail or prison
- Five years probation
- Fine of $1,000 – $5,000
- 1-year minimum license suspension
- Ignition Interlock
- Third DWI:
- Class D felony
- Fine of up to $5,000
- Up to 7 years in jail
WHY CHOOSE LAW OFFICES OF JONATHAN B. MANLEY FOR DWI DEFENSE?
Attorney Jonathan B. Manley has the knowledge, training, and experience to defend you against charges of DWI/ DUI. He understands how field sobriety tests and BAC tests should be conducted and can thoroughly investigate the circumstances of your police stop to determine whether or not your stop or arrest was unlawful. He is also a former prosecutor and has a strong understanding of how the prosecution will proceed with their case. When you retain The Law Offices of Jonathan B. Manley your lawyer will work to stay a step ahead of the prosecution in your case.
The Law Offices of Jonathan B. Manley can assist you if you’ve been charged with:
- Driving While Intoxicated
- Driving While Ability Impaired by Drugs
- Vehicular Assault or Homicide
- Leaving the Scene of an Accident Without Reporting
- Refusal to Submit to a Chemical Test
- Driving with a Suspended License
- Zero Tolerance
- All Traffic Matters
In addition to his extensive courtroom and trial experience handling DWI/ DUI cases, Mr. Manley has specialized training in the fields of accident reconstruction, chemical testing and the administration of field sobriety tests. If you have been charged with Driving While Intoxicated, do not hesitate to call us at (631) 317-0765.