Thursday, September 20, 2012
State Must Prove Operation of Vehicle to Win DUI Case in NJ
In NJ, courts have the discretion to broadly construe "operation" of a motor vehicle to include intent to drive while intoxicated. Intent to drive while under the influence has been proven by as little as sitting in a vehicle with the keys in your possession. There is not a true "motion" requirement for the vehicle and the arresting officer need not witness operation. However, no matter how amorphous the definition of "operation" may be, the fact remains that the prosecution bears the burden of proving the defendant was impaired, had the means to operate a vehicle in very close proximity and the intent to operate said vehicle while still under the influence of drugs or alcohol. A DWI in New Jersey carries serious consequences. If you are charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, illegal drugs such as heroin, cocaine, marijuana or ecstasy or prescription drugs such as oxycontin, percocet, roxycottin, valium or other drugs which may hinder your ability to drive, even if you have a prescription for them, you should consult an experienced DUI attorney immediately in order to ensure your rights are protected. Before conceding guilt, your matter should be fully reviewed by an experienced attorney to prevent you from being convicted when the state does not have adequate evidence to prove it's case. This blog is for informational purposes only and in no way intended to replace the advice of an attorney regarding your specific matter. If you are charged with a crime, you should consult an experienced DUI attorney immediately in order to protect your rights. For more information on driving while intoxicated, driving under the influence, controlled dangerous substances (CDS) in a motor vehicle or other criminal law matters in New Jersey visit HeatherDarlingLawyer.com.