A DUI or DWI charge carries serious consequences in New York State. A conviction can result in fines, a possible jail sentence and the lifelong stigma of a criminal record. Even if you are not convicted, the charge alone can result in license suspension, as well as potential damage to your reputation and career.
If your blood alcohol content was 0.18 or more, you can be charged with aggravated DWI under New York law. Your license will be suspended for at least a year. You may be required to have an ignition interlock device installed in your car. This device will require you to blow into a tube before starting the car. If the device shows you have been drinking, the car will not start.
If an individual refuses to take a breath test, his or her license will automatically be suspended for a year. And the state can still proceed with the criminal charges, even without the breathalyzer evidence. The jury will be instructed that there is a presumption the individual refused the test because he or she knew they wouldn’t pass it.
Fortunately, like anyone charged with a crime, you have the right to an attorney and the right to confront and cross-examine your accusers in court. In many cases it is possible to challenge breathalyzer test evidence if the equipment was not properly calibrated or if the officer administering the test failed to follow the correct test protocol. The accuracy of any field sobriety tests can also be challenged. By rigorously examining the state’s evidence and pointing out any deficiencies, it is often possible to get the charges reduced or dismissed altogether.
Our law firm represents individuals charged with DUI or DWI throughout Long Island. The information in this post is intended as general information only and should not be taken as legal advice. For more information on our drunk driving defense practice, visit our DUI/DWI web page.