NJ DUI Attorney Discusses: New Jersey Man Found Not Guilty of Driving While High Although Found with Marijuana/ THC in His Blood

NJ DUI Attorney Discusses: New Jersey Man Found Not Guilty of Driving While High Although Found with Marijuana/ THC in His BloodA New Jersey case demonstrated why it is so important to get a good DUI/DWI defense attorney if you or someone you know is ever charged with driving under the influence of marijuana. A South Jersey man, Patrick Miller, was charged with driving while intoxicated in addition to two counts of vehicular homicide in a 2015 accident that took two lives. Miller was subsequently tested and found to have THC in his blood. THC is the active ingredient in marijuana.

Based on the results of the blood test, multiple charges were brought and Miller faced up to 20 years in state prison. Prosecutors recommended a sentence of 12 years if he agreed to plead guilty. Instead, Miller plead not guilty, sought legal counsel, and went to trial to fight the charges against him. This past week, he was acquitted, meaning a jury of twelve of his peers agreed that he was not guilty.

The Accident

Patrick Miller’s accident was highlighted in the news after the 28-year-old handyman lost control of his pickup truck and struck a jogger and local teacher, Allison McGinnis. Miller’s truck then struck a tree, flipped over, and killed his passenger, David Eldridge.

The Blood Test

Miller was airlifted from the crash. Accordingly, he was given a blood test while receiving medical treatment – blood tests are very common when a driver who is suspected of DUI or DWI is injured. Because a breathalyzer or breath test cannot be given to a seriously injured driver, police officers will often request a warrant and get a court-ordered blood test to determine if a driver is under the influence of alcohol or other intoxicants.

In this case, police officers administered a blood test to see if Miller was under the influence of any substances. 4 nanograms per milliliter of THC were found in Miller’s blood sample. Accordingly, prosecutors blamed the accident on intoxication and decided to bring charges including Driving While Intoxicated and vehicular manslaughter, based on the theory that Miller drove his truck recklessly while intoxicated causing two deaths.

The Defense in the Case

Instead of accepting the plea deal, Miller chose to fight the charges against him. The law requires the state to prove that a driver is actually intoxicated or impaired while operating a motor vehicle. Experts were presented by both the prosecution and the defense to argue that the blood test results were unreliable in establishing intoxication. In fact, Miller’s results – the THC reading of 4 nanograms per milliliter of blood – was below the level set as a standard in many of the states that have legal marijuana — 5 nanograms of THC concentration.

Furthermore, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has cautioned against using blood tests to determine cannabis impairment, and many lawyers and politicians are concerned that this arbitrary standard could lead to false accusations and flawed charges being brought against marijuana users. One of the major problems in prosecuting driving while high cases is that marijuana can remain in the blood stream long after a person is no longer impaired or under the influence.

In Miller’s case, other defenses included witness testimony that helped show that he was not driving erratically shortly before the accident, nor was he impaired while performing handyman work 20 minutes before the accident occurred. Ultimately, a jury agreed with Miller and his attorney that there was not enough evidence to show that Miller was actually intoxicated or impaired while operating his vehicle.

New Jersey Marijuana Driving Defense Attorney Edward M. Janzekovich Can Defend You if You’re Charged

The consequences for driving while high are serious. If you or someone you know is arrested, charged or convicted, an experienced attorney will know how to defend you in a court of law before a judge and jury. Hiring the right attorney matters. A good lawyer can make all the difference. To speak with an experienced New Jersey DWI/DUI lawyer about your situation, call us at 732-257-1137 or contact us online today. We serve clients throughout the state of New Jersey.

NJ DWI/DUI Lawyer Discusses – More Breathalyzer Results Called into Question

NJ DWI/DUI Lawyer Discusses – More Breathalyzer Results Called into QuestionRegular readers of the Edward M. Janzekovich law blog are likely aware that breathalyzer results are routinely called into question. There have been numerous high-profile instances in the past few years demonstrating that the results of alcohol breath tests can be unreliable. In fact, courts across the nation have regularly thrown out evidence used by police officers and prosecutors that would have otherwise resulted in DUI and DWI convictions. For that reason, we like to highlight these examples when they arise to educate our readers about the importance of getting a good lawyer to analyze the evidence against you.

In New Jersey, the law offices of Edward M. Janzekovich have helped numerous clients overturn convictions, particularly in the past year following the case of State v. Eileen Cassidy, in which the Supreme Court issued a ruling deciding that the breathalyzer evidence used in 20,667 drunk driving cases in Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean, Somerset, and Union counties were untrustworthy. The Court determined that the evidence used to support those convictions must be thrown out. With it, convicted defendants earned the right to challenge past convictions.

Similar episodes have been mirrored across the country. The most recent example occurred in Massachusetts earlier this month.

More than 400 Alcohol Breathalyzer Test Results Thrown Out by Massachusetts Court

Massachusetts Judge Robert Brennan recently issued a ruling in a series of consolidated cases that shined a spotlight on the Massachusetts Office of Alcohol Testing. The decision called into question the breathalyzer evidence used in over 400 DUI/DWI cases. The Massachusetts Court held that the members of the Office had knowledge that breathalyzers used in numerous cases were inaccurate but failed to release this information to DUI defense attorneys.

When this concealment was discovered, the head of the Office was actually fired, the results of the tests were excluded or thrown out of those case, and prosecutors were forced to either abandon those cases or attempt to prove that the defendants were driving while intoxicated without relying on any breathalyzer evidence.

This was also not the first time that Judge Brennan had issued rulings challenging the reliability of breathalyzer evidence. He issued a similar ruling last September that affected tens of thousands of DUI cases.

Why an Experienced DUI Attorney is Needed if Your Have Been Charged with DUI or DWI Based on Breathalyzer Evidence

Although these recent rulings did not take place in New Jersey, the situation still demonstrates why hiring a good lawyer is so important any time you or someone you know is arrested, charged, or convicted of drunk driving. Many people believe that if they fail a breathalyzer test, that is the end of the line and they will be found guilty.

This is simply not true.

Defendants in a DUI or DWI trial are entitled to present a defense and question the evidence being used against them. These cases show that, sometimes, the evidence is unreliable or even knowingly inaccurate.

Specifically, breathalyzer machines must be properly calibrated and administered according to strict guidelines in New Jersey, in order to maintain their accuracy. If the machine is not calibrated properly or the test is not given correctly, the test results could show a false positive, which could lead to an unfair conviction resulting in significant fines, penalties, loss of driving privileges, and potential jail time.

An experienced lawyer can check and challenge breathalyzer evidence by requesting the proper discovery, going through the records to determine adherence to the rules, and possibly even submit the reports and testimony of expert witnesses who can demonstrate in court that the evidence is unreliable. A good lawyer will know where to look and what questions to ask. If the breathalyzer evidence is excluded in a case, many times the case will be dismissed completely

NJ DUI Lawyer Edward M. Janzekovich Knows Where to Look and What Questions to Ask

If you or someone you know has been arrested, charged, or convicted of drunk driving, it is extremely important to contact an experienced DUI/DWI attorney. A great attorney will be able to review your case and determine whether or not you have been falsely charged. Having a knowledgeable lawyer can make all the difference. To speak with an experienced New Jersey DWI/DUI lawyer about your situation, call us at 732-257-1137 or contact us online today. We serve clients throughout the state of New Jersey.

ATTENTION: NEW JERSEY SECOND OMNIBUS ORDER AND GOVERNOR MURPHY’S ROADMAP TO REOPENING AFTER COVID-19 CORONAVIRUS – WEEK 7

Here on the Edward M. Janzekovich law blog, we believe it is important to keep our readers and clients informed about what is going on within the legal system with regard to the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic. To all our clients, colleagues, and friends – as always, we hope you are able to remain safe and healthy during this time.

Supreme Court of New Jersey SECOND Omnibus Order

This last week, the Supreme Court of New Jersey issued a second omnibus Order with the following renewed commitment to remote proceedings. The two most important take-aways for anyone charged with DUI/DWI or Refusal to Submit to a Breath test are as follows:

1. Most Court Operations Are Continuing Remotely

During the COVID-19 pandemic, most court operations have continued remotely in all levels of the court system. Since transitioning to virtual operations, the courts have conducted more than 12,000 remote court events involving more than 80,000 participants.

If you were charged before or during the quarantine/lock-down period, you cannot ignore the charges against you. If you do not take action on pending charges, you will face consequences.

2. More Court Matters Will Resume in the Coming Weeks, INCLUDING MUNICIPAL COURTS

The Court’s Order lifts the suspension of Municipal Court sessions. As of April 27, 2020, remote proceedings in the Municipal Courts have resumed for more proceedings.

Moreover, effective May 11, 2020, with appropriate notice to the parties, Municipal Court sessions can resume in individual Municipal Courts. Sessions may only proceed by video or phone. Municipal Court sessions will resume to the extent possible based on facilities, technology, and other resources.

Although trials and discovery hearings will continue to follow special rules for postponement, many other issues in your drunk driving, drugged driving, driving while high, driving while intoxicated, driving under the influence, and refusal to submit to a breathalyzer case can and will proceed. If you do not take prompt and immediate action in your case, you will likely face serious consequences. The Court has specifically said that further postponements and adjournments will not be granted, and most deadlines will not be extended except in special circumstances.

A copy of the newest orders can be found here:

  1. https://njcourts.gov/notices/2020/n200424a.pdf?c=bll
  2. https://njcourts.gov/notices/2020/n200427a.pdf?c=ir0
  3. https://njcourts.gov/notices/2020/n200427b.pdf?c=FJH

Governor Murphy’s Roadmap to Reopening

Last week, Governor Murphy also issued a statement regarding his plan to reopen and resume key functions around the state.

ATTENTION: NEW JERSEY SECOND OMNIBUS ORDER AND GOVERNOR MURPHY’S ROADMAP TO REOPENING AFTER COVID-19 CORONAVIRUS – WEEK 7

Although no specific deadlines or dates were provided, the “road back” demonstrates a commitment by the state to reopening. This, taken together with the Court’s orders, demonstrates that anyone who has a legal issue – including pending DUI or DWI matters – should start making preparations for cases to resume.

Accordingly, it will be important to consult an experienced drunk driving and drugged driving attorney as soon as possible if you have a case pending or have any questions.

New Jersey Drunk Driving Lawyer, Edward M. Janzekovich, Can If You Were Charged Before or During the Quarantine/ Lock-Down Period

If you or someone you know was charged for DUI or DWI before or during the stay-at-home period, there are issues in your case that may need to be resolved immediately or in the near future. An experienced attorney can review your individual case and determine the best way to proceed at this time. A good lawyer can make all the difference. We at the Law Offices of Edward M. Janzekovich can help. To speak with an experienced New Jersey DWI/DUI lawyer about your situation, call us at 732-257-1137 or contact us online today. We serve clients throughout the state of New Jersey.

New Jersey Driving High Attorney – Saliva Test Strips Could Detect Marijuana Use

New Jersey Driving High Attorney – Saliva Test Strips Could Detect Marijuana UseThe law prohibits driving while intoxicated as the result of any substance, including legal, illegal, over the counter and prescription drugs. For that reason, when it comes to DUI and DWI, driving under the influence of marijuana carries the same consequences and penalties as drunk driving and driving under the influence of drugs.

However, unlike alcohol, it is difficult to detect when someone is under the influence of marijuana. A new technology could change that. Research being conducted at the University of Texas suggests that saliva could be used to as a more accurate way of conducting roadside THC intoxication tests. This could make testing for marijuana impairment easier, cheaper, and more accurate.

Why Marijuana or Weed Impairment Testing is Difficult

As we have previously discussed on the Edward M. Janzekovich law blog, marijuana intoxication evidence can be flawed. Even drug recognition experts can get it wrong and be overruled in a court of law. That’s why, if you or anyone you know is arrested or charged with driving under the influence of weed, cannabis, THC or other marijuana derivative, it is important to get an experienced lawyer as soon as possible.

The reason it is difficult to accurately test intoxication due to marijuana is because detectable amounts of THC – the active chemical in marijuana – can remain in a person’s blood or urine long after he or she has last smoked weed or eaten an edible. Therefore, even though marijuana is detected, the person may not be impaired or intoxicated. Since the law only prohibits “driving while intoxicated,” a driver cannot be convicted of DUI or DWI if a good lawyer can prove that the driver was not impaired at the time he or she was actually driving.

How Saliva Test Strips Work

Researchers at the University of Texas are developing a test that uses disposable test strips and a compact portable reader device to read a person’s saliva and look for signs of marijuana usage. The strips include special proteins that only react to THC. The special reader device can analyze the strip and determine how much THC is there. From there, the reader is able to accurately estimate THC levels in the bloodstream.

Current reports suggest that the device can make a reading in only five minutes and is accurate from 100 picograms per milliliter to 100 nanograms per milliliter of blood. A proposed marijuana intoxication level set by researchers is between 1 and 15 nanograms/ml of blood.

Before this kind of technology could be implemented in New Jersey, experts and politicians would need to designate a per se intoxication level – similar to the .08% BAC level for alcohol impairment. Research would need to be conducted to determine a fair THC concentration that can accurately predict driver impairment/ intoxication without unfairly infringing on people’s rights.

As previously discussed here on the Edward M. Janzekovich law blog, “The New Jersey Marijuana Legalization Amendment” is on the November 3, 2020 ballot in New Jersey as a legislatively referred constitutional amendment. Voters will have an opportunity to vote whether or not to legalize the possession and use of marijuana for persons age 21 and older and legalize the cultivation, processing, and sale of retail marijuana. If the vote passes, the question of standard THC intoxication levels will become increasingly important in the near future.

New Jersey Defense Attorney Edward M. Janzekovich Handles Any Kind of DUI and DWI Case

When it comes to driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, the law and technology are always changing. If you or someone you know is arrested, you will want to talk to a who is prepared to review the evidence against you and get any inadmissible evidence thrown out. A good attorney can make a big difference. To speak with an experienced New Jersey DWI/DUI lawyer about your situation, call us at 732-257-1137 or contact us online today. We serve clients throughout the state of New Jersey.

Attention: Nj Municipal And Superior Court Coronavirus/Covid-19 Update – Week 2

Attention: Nj Municipal And Superior Court Coronavirus/Covid-19 Update – Week 2As reported here on the Edward M. Janzekovich law blog last week, the National and State level response to the Coronavirus/COVID-19 Pandemic has resulted in a shut-down of my non-essential public and private businesses as well as gatherings and public functions, including all Municipal Courts in the Garden State. Until further notice, all non-urgent Municipal Court proceedings will be suspended until at least March 27, 2020.

Additionally, several new Court Orders have been issued that can affect anyone currently charged or previously convicted of drunk driving, driving while high, or driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

If you or anyone you know is arrested, charged, or convicted of DUI/DWI during this crisis, it may be more important than ever to reach out to an attorney immediately to find out what your rights are and what your options are. An experienced attorney can review each situation on a case-by-case basis to determine how it is affected by the State of Emergency We at the Law Offices of Edward M. Janzekovich can help

Order to Commute or Suspend County Jail Sentences

If you or someone you know is currently serving a jail sentence related to DUI, DWI, or Refusal to Submit to a Breathalyzer Test, it is important to reach out to an attorney as soon as possible.

A recent Order issued by the Chief Justice of the New Jersey Supreme Court and signed by the Office of the Attorney General, the Office of the Public Defender, the County Prosecutors Association, and the American Civil Liberties Union has granted the RELEASE of numerous persons currently serving a county jail sentence or jail sentence as the result of a municipal conviction. The release will be carried out starting Tuesday, March 24, 2020, will proceed as quickly as possible, and will continue pursuant to the timeline directed in the Order.

For some, this release may be considered satisfaction or full service of the sentence (meaning the prison sentence is concluded), while others may have the time converted into “time served” and subject to additional prison time. Additionally, there are some exceptions regarding who will be released – including anyone who has already tested positive for Coronavirus or COVID-19, and there are situations where an inmate may request not to be released.

Once released, inmates are expected to comply with all Driver’s License Suspension periods and probation requirements.

If you are unsure how you or a loved one is affected by this Order, you may need to consult an attorney immediately. Moreover, if you are someone who has been released due to the Order, you may want to consult an attorney to understand what your rights and responsibilities are after

The signed Order can be found here: https://njcourts.gov/notices/2020/n200323a.pdf?c=j7I

State and Superior Court Closings and Other Announcements

As previously noted, most but not all matters, cases, and hearings before the State Municipal and Superior Courts have been postponed and will be rescheduled. If you were previously scheduled for any Court appearance, including related to a Refusal, DUI or DWI charge, you will want to reach out to an attorney immediately to see how your case has been affected.

Moreover, not all proceedings have been suspended. If you are arrested or charged during any period of Court suspension, you will want to consult an attorney to see if your case will be postponed or will proceed as scheduled.

Finally, while we at the Edward M. Janzekovich law blog strive to keep you informed during this period of lock-down, it is important to recognize that new announcements are being issued by the Court every day. Nearly all of the state level announcements are posted here: https://njcourts.gov/attorneys/notices.html

However, not all announcements will be posted at the website above, and there may be specific municipal or local directives that can affect your case. Accordingly, it will be important to consult an experienced drunk and drugged driving attorney as soon as possible if you have any questions.

New Jersey Drunk Driving Lawyer, Edward M. Janzekovich, Can Help If Your Case is Affected by Coronavirus and COVID-19 Court Closings

Until further notice, local, municipal, and state court proceedings will be affected throughout the state. An attorney will be able to answer your questions about Court proceedings and check on the status of your matter. To speak with an experienced New Jersey DWI/DUI lawyer about your situation, call us at 732-257-1137 or contact us online today. We serve clients throughout the state of New Jersey.

Attention: Nj Municipal And Superior Court Immediate Update; Coronavirus And Covid-19 Closings And Adjournments

In light of the Coronavirus / COVID-19 National Emergency situation, many non-essential public and private businesses have suspended or restricted operations, including the New Jersey Judiciary, which will affect local, municipal, state, and superior courts.

If you have a current or upcoming court date or hearing scheduled in any court – including traffic court, municipal court, DUI and DWI court, Superior Court, or other judicial proceeding – it may be canceled and postponed to a later date. To find out for sure, you can reach out to the Law Offices of Edward M. Janzekovich for help and guidance.

If you have a DUI/DWI or other hearing scheduled during this time, it will be important to reach out to an attorney and confirm the status of your case. If you are arrested, charged, or convicted during this time, there can also be situations where you will still need to appear, and it is important to reach out to a lawyer for verification.

Municipal Court Closings

On Saturday, March 14, 2020, a notice was issued by the NJ Judiciary, Chief Justice Stuart Rabner and Acting Administrative Director of the New Jersey Courts, Glenn A. Grant, J.A.D., directing all Municipal Court sessions be suspended for two weeks. The suspension will begin Monday, March 16 and continue through Friday, March 27, 2020.

Persons who are scheduled to appear before a Municipal Court to contest a traffic or parking ticket, or minor local ordinance violation should not appear and should await notice of a new court date. However, the Municipal Courts will continue to handle certain matters, including detainments, probable cause determinations, applications for temporary restraining orders, Extreme Risk Protective Orders, and search warrants; as well as other matters that implicate public safety.

If you have a DUI/DWI or other hearing scheduled during this time, it may or may not be affected, or it may be switched from an in-person hearing to a telephonic or telecommunication hearing. An attorney can confirm.

The official notice, posted below, can also be found here: https://njcourts.gov/notices/2020/n200314a.pdf?c=ewi

State and Superior Court Closings

Similarly, several notices from the Chief Justice and Administrative Office of the Courts have been issued with direction and guidance regarding closings and postponements. Some, but not all, matters, cases, and hearings before the State Superior Courts have been postponed and will be rescheduled. However, many proceedings will continue through the use of remote communication, and many deadlines and electronic filing requirements remain in place.

If you or someone you know has a matter currently scheduled in front of the County Court, State Court, or Superior Court, it is important to contact an attorney as soon as possible to determine if the matter has been postponed until a later date or if the matter will be proceeding through the use of internet or remote technology.

Moreover, the Administrative Office of the Court is constantly monitoring this situation, and additional meetings are scheduled this week to determine how other cases will be affected moving forward. Therefore, it may be necessary to continue to check on the status of your proceedings on a daily basis to determine if anything has changed.

The March 12, 2020 Notice to the Court can be found here: https://njcourts.gov/notices/2020/n200312d.pdf?c=spB

The March 15, 2020 Notice to the Court can be found here: https://njcourts.gov/notices/2020/n200315a.pdf?c=9yu

Other Court and Judicial Proceedings

An updated schedule of County Superior Court and State Court Closings can be found here: https://njcourts.gov/courts/closings.html

Unfortunately, it will be impossible to cover all the various types of court proceedings in this blog. During this time, if you have a legal matter that requires urgent attention, or if you are unsure if your case is affected by the Coronavirus and COVID-19 closings, you should ask a lawyer immediately.

New Jersey DUI and DWI Attorney, Edward M. Janzekovich, Can Answer Your Questions About Coronavirus and COVID-19 Court Closings

Until further notice, local, municipal, and state court proceedings will be affected throughout the state. An attorney will be able to answer your questions about Court proceedings and check on the status of your matter. To speak with an experienced New Jersey DWI/DUI lawyer about your situation, call us at 732-257-1137 or contact us online today. We serve clients throughout the state of New Jersey.

NJ DUI and DWI Defense Blog: You Don’t Need to Be Driving to Get a Ticket for Drunk Driving

NJ DUI and DWI Defense Blog: You Don’t Need to Be Driving to Get a Ticket for Drunk DrivingLast week, the New Jersey Appellate Division – the second highest Court in the state – issued an opinion reaffirming the fact that you can get a ticket for DUI or DWI even when you are not actually driving a car, truck or automobile. Although drunk driving is often referred to as a DWI (“driving while intoxicated”) or DUI (“Driving Under the Influence”), the law doesn’t actually use the word “driving” at all. N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 actually makes it illegal to:

. . . operate[] a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor, narcotic, hallucinogenic or habit-producing drug, or operate[] a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08% or more by weight of alcohol in the defendant’s blood . . .

In State v. Thompson, No. A-2011-18T4, decided on February 10, 2020, the Appellate division upheld the long-held rule in New Jersey that “operate” does not only mean “drive,” and you can get a DUI or DWI in other circumstances, such as if you are found asleep behind the wheel of a parked, non-moving vehicle.

The Case of John Thompson

In State v. Thompson, Mr. Thompson was charged with violations of N.J.S.A. 39:4-50(a), for operating a vehicle while intoxicated, and N.J.S.A. 39:4-50.2, for refusing to submit to a breathalyzer test as required by the law.

These are the important facts according to the opinion:

  1. Mr. Thompson was found asleep at 10:30 p.m. in the parking lot of 7-Eleven in Wanaque, NJ.
  2. He was in the driver’s seat.
  3. The car’s engine was running.
  4. There was a half-eaten sandwich and prescription bottles on the front passenger seat.
  5. The officers stated that they smelled a strong odor of alcohol.
  6. The officers woke him up and he told them he had been asleep for 30-40 minutes.
  7. Mr. Thompson failed a field sobriety test and was arrested.
  8. Subsequently, he told police officers at the station that he was under the care of a physician and was prescribed Methadone, Hydrocodone, Xanax, and Cymbalta.
  9. He also volunteered that he had two drinks within a three-hour period.

Altogether, the state could use this evidence to show not only that Mr. Thompson had the ability to operate the vehicle while intoxicated, but that he likely drove to the 7-eleven while under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol. Mr. Thompson voluntarily told the police officers many of the important details the state would need to convict him.

The Court noted that there is no question this was sufficient evidence to convict him of drunk operation of a motor vehicle, and he was also convicted of refusal to submit to a breathalyzer test.

Why Operation Does NOT Require Actual Driving

Although a violation of N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 is known by everyone as DWI, DUI, “driving while intoxicated,” “driving under the influence,” and “drunk driving,” the term “driving” is not found in the body of the law. Instead, “operation” has been interpreted by famous past cases including State v. Tischio, State v. Wright, and State v. Sweeney.

A person sleeping in the driver’s seat of a vehicle while intoxicated, with the keys in the ignition, and the engine running will likely be found to have been operating the vehicle, even if the vehicle never moves. This is known as “the possibility of motion.”

New Jersey Drunk Driving Attorney Edward M. Janzekovich Believes You Deserve a Good Defense

The state is not automatically entitled to a guilty verdict or conviction for DUI/DWI if a person is found asleep in a parked car. There are several important factors that the state will need to prove, and which an experienced attorney can use to have the charges dismissed. If you or someone you know is arrested, charged for, or convicted of DUI or DWI, it is important to contact a good attorney as soon as possible. A good attorney can make all the difference. To speak with an experienced New Jersey DWI/DUI lawyer about your situation, call us at 732-257-1137 or contact us online today. We serve clients throughout the state of New Jersey.

New Jersey DWI Defense Attorney – Are Women More Likely to Get a DUI than Men if Arrested? Why?

New Jersey DWI Defense Attorney – Are Women More Likely to Get a DUI than Men if Arrested? Why?There’s no question that there are more men who are arrested for drunk driving than women. However, the gap in the number of DUI and DWI arrests between men and women is getting smaller every year. And, studies suggest that, if a woman is pulled over, she will be more likely to be convicted of DUI than a man under the same circumstances. Today, on the Edward M. Janzekovich law blog, we’ll look at some of the statistics and some of the reasons why.

National and New Jersey Drunk Driving Statistics by Gender

In 1980, only about 10% of drunk driving arrests were women – and 90% were men. In 2016, that number had risen to nearly 25% for women and 75% for men.

In 2008, women were behind the wheel in 15% of all drunk driving fatalities in the United States, compared to 85% for men, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). In 2017, the percentage for women had increased to 20% for drunk driving incidents involving at least the loss of one life.

Clearly, the number of women who are being arrested is increasing steadily over time, although men are still nearly 4 times more likely to be convicted of drunk driving. The simplest explanation for the increase is that women are now driving more than ever before: social and cultural changes have led to more women driving. These changes have also led to more women drinking outside the home. Nonetheless, if a woman does get behind the wheel, and is then pulled over, she will also be more likely to be arrested and convicted. Why?

Women May be More Likely to Be Convicted of DUI or DWI Once Arrested

Although women may be less likely to get behind the wheel than men while drunk, the studies suggest that once pulled over, a woman will be more likely to be arrested or convicted than a man under the same circumstances. One well-known reason is that women are generally lighter than men. Therefore, a woman who consumes the same amount of alcohol as a man will likely have a higher blood alcohol concentration.

However, weight is not the only factor at play. Multiple research studies have concluded that women will have higher blood ethanol concentrations (BAC) than men after consuming the same amount of alcohol, even after the study is controlled for weight. One of the ways the body breaks down alcohol is through an enzyme called alcohol dehydrogenase. Studies have concluded that men may have 2 to 4 times as much alcohol dehydrogenase in the stomach as women, meaning women may reach the same BAC after consuming half as much alcohol as a man who weighs the same.

In summary, women may not process alcohol as efficiently as men AND women tend to be lighter. Therefore, a woman can become legally intoxicated faster than a man under the same circumstances, having the same number of drinks: it just takes less alcohol for women to reach the legal limit of .08% BAC than for men.

New Jersey DWI Attorney Edward M. Janzekovich Knows that Anybody Can be Charged with DUI

If you have been charged with DUI or DWI, you deserve a good lawyer, no matter who you are. Everyone is entitled to a lawyer, and a good attorney can make all the difference. To speak with an experienced New Jersey DWI/DUI lawyer about your situation, call us at 732-257-1137 or contact us online today. We serve clients throughout the state of New Jersey.

NJ DUI/DWI Lawyer BREAKING NEWS–Ballot Question on Marijuana Legalization Approved for 2020

Ballot Question on MarijuanaHere at the Edward M Janzekovich law blog, we have made it a priority to keep our readers informed on all issues pertaining to marijuana legalization in this state. Last time we discussed the matter, we reported that Governor Phil Murphy and the New Jersey State Legislature had reached an agreement on recreationalpot use. However, a vote on legalization failed when legislators could not agree on a number of issues including taxation and expungement.

Recent news from late last month and early this month have presented a new roadmap to legalization, as well as addressing expungement. If marijuana is ultimately legalized this December, as analysts predict, then New Jersey could become the 11th state, along with the District of Columbia, to legalize weed for recreational use.

Ballot Question Passed

Although a majority of legislators previously agreed that marijuana should be legalized in the state, all proposed legislation failed last March when lawmakers failed to agree to the specifics of legalization. Late last month, New Jersey legislators passed a proposed ballot question for the 2020 ballot. This means that, in November, New Jersey voters will have the opportunity to decide whether or not to legalize marijuana, and the question will be much simpler.

The New Jersey Marijuana Legalization Amendment will be on the ballot in New Jersey as a constitutional amendment on November 3, 2020. It will look like this:

A "yes" vote supports this constitutional amendment to legalize the possession and use of marijuana for persons age 21 and older and legalize the cultivation, processing, and sale of retail marijuana.

A "no" vote opposes this constitutional amendment to legalize the possession and use of marijuana and the cultivation, processing, and sale of retail marijuana in New Jersey.

Essentially, voters are being asked to vote “yes” or “no” to recreational marijuana. If the amendment passes, New Jersey Senators and Assembly persons will be forced to figure out the specifics. In the meantime, all sales of marijuana products would be subject to the state’s 6.625% sales tax, and towns could pass ordinances to charge local taxes as well.

Other Steps Towards Cannabis Legalization

With the ballot question settled, lawmakers and industry leaders are moving quickly to address other concerns regarding recreational marijuana usage.

Shortly after the ballot question was settled, legislators passed new laws to address expungement, which Governor Murphy then signed. Amongst other things, S4154 calls for low-level marijuana convictions to be sealed, meaning the conviction is essentially hidden and cannot be used in the future.

Last week, more than 100 people gathered to listen to state Senator Declan O’Scanlon, R-Monmouth, discuss marijuana decriminalization, legalization, medicinal use, and expungement.

On March 10, a large industry conference will be held in Edison, NJ, where lawyers, businessman, industry leaders, and lawmakers will take part in panel discussions and networking to address concerns around legalization.

With the November ballot rapidly approaching, more and more questions are being raised about the future of marijuana use in New Jersey – including questions regarding driving while high. One of the issues many lawmakers and law enforcement have been focusing on include how to police and enforce laws against driving high. State officials are working hard to figure out practical, technological, and/or innovative ways to determine when someone is driving under the influence of weed or pot.

Whatever decision is made, there is no question that changes will be made to the law in the not-so-distant future. If you or someone you know is arrested, charged, or convicted of smoking and driving, it is important to retain an experienced attorney who stays informed and ahead of all the changes to the DUI and DWI laws in this state.

NJ Driving While High Defense Attorney Edward M. Janzekovich Can Answer Your Questions

DUI and DWI law is constantly changing in New Jersey. If you or someone you know is arrested, charged, or convicted, you should call an experienced attorney as soon as possible. A good lawyer can make all the difference. To speak with an experienced New Jersey DWI lawyer about your situation, call us at 732-257-1137 or contact us online today. We serve clients throughout the state of New Jersey.

NJ Drunk Driving Defense Lawyer – Politician? Police Officer? Celebrity? No one is Above the DUI Law

Every week, local and national newspapers are full of headlines about people getting arrested for drunk driving, drugged driving, and driving while high. And if there is one common theme about who lands in the news, it’s that anybody can be arrested and land in the news for DUI and DWI – from politicians to police officers to celebrities and professional athletes – no one is too important to be arrested for intoxicated driving. No one is above the law.

Police Officers Are Under Strict Observation

NJ Drunk Driving Defense LawyerYears ago, police officers may have been more willing to let a driver off with a warning if he or she were pulled over for drunk driving – especially if nobody got hurt. Now, as a result of the modern requirement that police officers and law enforcement film all encounters with civilians, police officers are under strict observation. Anyone who is pulled over that shows any sign of intoxication will likely be arrested.

Even if a police officer does not know for certain if you are drunk, he or she will most likely err on the side of caution and bring you into the station for a breathalyzer test. In order to arrest a driver, a police officer does not need to know that you are drunk with 100% certainty. Rather, he or she need only have probable cause to believe that you were driving drunk.

Once you are brought into the station, the breath test will be the best evidence to confirm whether or not you are guilty of drunk driving. As we often remind our readers here on the Edward M. Janzekovich law blog, it is illegal to refuse to take a breath test in New Jersey. Refusing to submit to a breath test is a quasi-crime just like DUI and DWI, and carries the same or harsher penalties.

Recent NY Politician Arrested for DUI

The recent arrest of New York State Assembly minority leader, Brian Kolb (R), on New Year’s Eve is the perfect example of how nobody is above the law.

Ironically, Senator Kolb had recently written an article warning readers not to drink and drive during the holiday season, specifically recognizing the National Drunk and Drugged Driving Prevention Month, which we previously highlighted on the Edward M. Janzekovich law blog.

Senator Kolb was subsequently involved in a one-vehicle accident with no injuries, and he was subsequently arrested by Ontario County Sheriff’s Office. A breathalyzer test revealed that his blood alcohol concentration was above the legal limit of .08% – the same legal level as in New Jersey. Senator Kolb then issued an official policy to his friends, family and constituents.

New Jersey Police Officers Arrested for DUI and DWI

Recent headlines have also demonstrated that New Jersey sheriff’s officers, police officers, and other law enforcement officers are in the same boat. Even if you work in an official capacity for the government, it is unlikely that you will be given any special treatment or leeway when pulled over. Many times, an arresting officer will be even more strict in enforcing the rules against a fellow officer, so that there will be no appearance of impropriety, unfair treatment, or official misconduct.

Unfortunately, when you work in an official capacity, the statutory penalties for DUI or DWI may be the least of your worries. Your career may also be severely affected by a loss of license or by rules that prohibit employees from receiving any such convictions.

Here, at the Edward M. Janzekovich law blog, we understand how devastating a DUI or DWI can be for anybody. That’s why we believe everybody is entitled to effective representation from an experienced drunk driving defense lawyer.

New Jersey DUI and DWI Attorney Edward M. Janzekovich Can Help If You’ve Been Charged

If you work in the kind of job where getting a DUI or DWI could get you fired, you know how important getting the right lawyer can be. It’s important to get an attorney who is willing to fight for you. To speak with an experienced New Jersey DWI lawyer about your situation, call us at 732-257-1137 or contact us online today. We serve clients throughout the state of New Jersey.