Careful Review of Discovery Lead to a Reduced DWI Sentence in Marlton Municipal Court
We previously discussed the exclusion of an Alcotest reading in Pemberton Township Municipal Court. Recently we were able to exclude another Alcotest Blood Alcohol Content (“BAC”) reading in Evesham Municipal Court.
The State’s discovery claimed our client blew a .23 BAC on the Alcotest. He was charged with DWI and reckless driving and failure to maintain lane.
If the Alcotest reading was admitted into evidence our client would have faced a minimum 7 month loss of licence and the imposition of an ignition interlock device once the client’s licence was restored plus other fines and costs. The penalties for a DWI conviction in New Jersey can be seen by clicking here.
The Alcotest reading is only admissible if, and only if, the State is able to provide all of the required proofs for its admission into evidence. These proof are part of the discovery that every defendant is entitled to review before entering a plea or going to trial. The required proofs are to ensure the Alcotest was properly calibrated, working properly and administered int he correct way at the time the test was administered.
After a careful review of the state’s discovery we were able to convince the prosecutor that the arresting officer did not satisfy the 20 minute observation requirement for someone charged with DWI. The breath test can only be properly administered after the Alcotest operator observes the suspect continuously for 20 minutes to make sure there is no mouth alcohol in the accused mouth. We were able to demonstrate that the 20 minute observation was done by 2 separate officers and was not continuous as required by the statute. In addition we raised the issue of the Alcotest’s failure to lock out for two minutes between samples during this particular breath test. The result for our client was that the results of the Aloctest were not offered into evidence.
Because of the inadmissibility of the Aloctest results, the Defendant was able to plead guilty to a first tier DWI. This resulted in license suspension of 3 months instead of 7 months and no imposition of ignition interlock device. The difference in the sentence saved the client thousands of dollars.
If you or a loved one needs strong representation in Evesham Township Municipal Court or any other municipal court in New Jersey, contact the municipal court defense lawyers at DeMichele & DeMichele today. We are here to defend the charges against you. Contact us now for your confidential and free initial consultation. You can also reach us by telephone (856) 546-1350. Don’t just plead guilty and risk your driving privilege or driving record.
The outcome of every DWI case is very fact specific. Your particular case results will vary depending on a wide range of legal issues and other factors. The facts of your case may not apply to or relate to the results of the case described above.