Refusing a Breathalyzer in New Jersey and Disputing the Test Results
The next step is someone’s going to have to sit down and take this breath test. If someone takes the breath test and they “fail” by blowing a 0.08 or above they’re not necessarily doomed, and there are defenses to the reading on the test, right?
Any DWI attorney worth their salt will go through with a fine-tooth comb. But you have to know what you’re looking for.
Refusing to Take the Breathalyzer Test
Is it common in New Jersey that people are accused of refusing the breath test when they didn’t mean to refuse it?
There are multiple reasons why someone would refuse to take a roadside breathalyzer. Sometimes the officers are not fulfilling their job responsibility, and if a person wants to understand what they’re rights are they will just mark it down as refusal. Sometimes with an individual there are language barriers. There are age issues. There’s a lack of understanding of what they’re signing when they are consenting to it, and sometimes the officers will mark it as a refusal.
What Will Occur if Your Breathalyzer Results Are Over the Legal Limit
What happens if you blow over, are you charged, and what happens if you either are marked ‘refused’ or you do refuse? Are there any additional penalties in regard to your DWI charges?
If you refuse the breathalyzer, you are in the highest tier automatically, meaning that 0.10 or above.
A refusal will result in enhanced penalties.
Will You Be Incarcerated If Your Breath Test Results Are Over the Legal Limit?
Once you take the test and the police obtain a reading, do they put you in jail overnight, or what happens to you then?
It depends on what they believe is safe for the public. If you can have someone get you a ride, sometimes there’s a period where they require a period of sobriety if you can’t get a ride. So, they will detain you until they believe that it’s safe for the public if you are released.
Is Bail Required?
Will they force you to pay a bail bond to get out of jail, or do they just let you go?
Generally, there’s no bail set, because it’s a municipal court offense.
After You are Charged With a DWI, When is your Court Appearance?
Once someone’s been charged and detained and released, now what? What happens? What are the common events, and what are the timelines on them?
They will have an arraignment, an initial arraignment where they will formally enter their plea. It’s advisable that everybody enters a plea of not guilty.
Then it’s scheduled for another court date; it’s normally a trial date. On that date a few things can occur. The arraignment is generally a week to two weeks after the date of arrest. And the trial date is, dependent upon the court and the caseload of the court where the individual will have to go, but that will normally occur between a month to two and a half months.
NO JAIL TIME
Commonwealth v. "H" (DUI case)
Client was charged with three separate DUI cases calling for mandatory minimum imprisonment of 90 days on each case. Client was advised to seek immediate intensive alcohol counseling. Client was sentenced to 1 year of house arrest after serving 3 days in the county prison.
Commonwealth v. "C" (Felony drug/Firearms case)
Client was charged with felony Delivery of drugs and illegal gun possession and was facing a mandatory 3-6 year prison sentence in the State prison system. Client was sentenced to one year of house arrest.
Commonwealth v. "S"
Client was charged with simple assault, domestic. After a hearing where evidence and testimony was presented, the entire case was dismissed by Judge Leonard Brown.
State of New Jersey v. "H"
Charges for young man charged with second degree aggravated assault were downgraded to third degree and he was accepted into the County Pretrial Intervention program with charges to be dismissed and record expunged after one year of misconduct free behavior.
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As former prosecutors, we have a balanced and in-depth understanding of the criminal justice system and how the prosecution prepares cases. In addition, we have long-standing experience dealing with local police departments, prosecutors and judges throughout southeastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
At Young, Marr and Associates, when we say “experience matters,” we mean it. Our lawyers, which include two former prosecutors and a former senior deputy district attorney bring more than three decades of criminal law experience, handling more than 10,000 criminal cases. It is precisely that experience that allows us to achieve outstanding results for our clients facing DUI, traffic, felony and misdemeanor charges in state, federal and juvenile courts.