Piscataway Drug DUI Lawyer
Piscataway Driving Under the Influence of Drugs Charge
While New Jersey’s DWI laws have much more impact on those who drive under the influence of alcohol, N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 also applies to driving under the influence of any drug (a.k.a. “DUI”) In Piscataway Township, with major roads like Rts. 18, 287 and the New Jersey Turnpike all in close proximity, law enforcement officials have a strong interest in keeping all impaired drivers, whether from alcohol or drugs like marijuana, cocaine, heroin, pain medication or sleeping pills, off the road. There is no leniency nor ability to plea bargain a drug DWI/DUI in Piscataway Municipal Court. If you have been charged with a DUI in Piscataway you will therefore have to put on a successful defense to avoid a mandatory suspension of your license and other significant consequences.
This is where our Piscataway law defense firm, the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, can help you. Our attorneys have over 100 years of collective experience helping individuals like you who have been charged with driving under the influence of drugs in Piscataway Township Municipal Court and elsewhere in New Jersey. Our staff, consisting of former prosecutors and veteran criminal defense attorneys, knows the ins and outs of New Jersey’s DUI laws, how best to mount a defense for you, and how best to achieve a positive outcome in your impending Piscataway DUI case. Contact us today to learn about what our attorneys can do to help you in your time of need.
Drug DUI Offense in Piscataway NJ Municipal Court
Under N.J.S.A. 39:4-50, the statute that governs all DUI and DWI related offenses in the State of New Jersey, a person runs afoul of the DUI portion of the law when they operate a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs, including any narcotic, hallucinogenic, or habit-producing drug. This means, for example, that a person could be convicted for operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of anything from heroin, cocaine, LSD, PCP or marijuana to things like prescription painkillers, such as Codeine, Percocet, Oxycontin, or Vicodin. While prescription pills and marijuana are typically treated to a slightly different standard in our laws, it is worth noting that really any scheduled Controlled Dangerous Substance is sufficient for you to be in jeopardy of violating the statute. As said above, though, a person only commits a violation if they have both operated a vehicle and been under the influence at the time of the arrest.
The operational element of the offense is typically easy for the prosecution to establish. They will do so in one of three ways. They may be able to show that the arresting officer directly witnessed operation prior to making a traffic stop, “direct evidence.” They may be able to show that the driver or a passenger in the accused’s vehicle admitted to operating the vehicle prior to or at the time of the arrest. Lastly, they may be able to use circumstantial evidence to prove operation, i.e., evidence that creates a presumption of operation where the officer did not directly witness it.
Provided the Piscataway prosecution is able to establish operation, he/she must then prove that you were operating your vehicle when your ability was impaired because of heroin, marijuana, cocaine, A breathalyzer test is of no assistance in this regard as it has no ability to detect drugs or level of impaired presented by them. Typically, the only methods that are of value to the prosecution is a blood or urine sample. However, unlike the implied consent that obligates someone driving in New Jersey to consent to providing a breath sample, there is no implied consent to a blood or urine test. The prosecution must obtain a warrant to have these tests performed in the event that voluntary consent is refused. But even then, the results of this test can only tell establish presence of Oxycontin, Hydrocodone, Heroin, etc., in your blood. The prosecutors must also establish impairment from the drug. To prove impairment, there must be a Drug Recognition Expert (“DRE”) that examined you at the Piscataway Police Station. A DRE is a specially trained police officer who has the ability, through special testing, to detect impairment from drugs, as well as the type of drugs influencing a person. If the prosecutors in Piscataway lacks a DRE and related report in a non-marijuana drug DWI case, he/she will not be able to convict you.
Assuming, however, that the prosecution establishes both operation and intoxication, the consequences of a Piscataway DUI conviction can be dire. A first offense carries with it a license suspension for up to a year, fines, and a surcharge of $1000 for three years. A second offense carries with it a suspension for 2 years, fines, community service, and a surcharge of $1000 for up to three years. A third or subsequent offense carries with it a suspension of up to 10 years, up to 180 days in jail, fines, community service, and a surcharge of $1500 for up to three years.
Piscataway Drug DWI Attorneys
The team of former DUI prosecutors at our Piscataway Law Firm stand ready to fight for you. We have decades of experience and knowledge to put to work for you in this regard. In the past, our efforts have yielded many more acquittals in drug DUI cases than you may imagine. These results come from not only skill but a commitment to battle for our clients until the end. If you were arrested for driving under the influence of drugs in Piscataway Township, it is certainly in your best interest to give us a call. So pick up the telephone and take advantage of a free consultation with our office. A qualified Piscataway DWI lawyer at the firm will be more than happy to give you his time.