A New Jersey DWI is a pretty encompassing charge. Not only is the charge related to those drivers who are impaired by alcohol in their system, but also those drivers who have drugs in their system that impact their ability to drive safely. Drugs can be illegal or prescribed. That’s right; a prescription drug that is legally prescribed to you can get you a New Jersey DWI if it is something that is not supposed to be taken when driving.
The New Jersey police are usually cued into a DWI situation when a driver is driving recklessly or in an otherwise suspicions manner. Developed in the 1970’s, the Drug Recognition Expert program was designed to formalize training and procedures to help police identify two things: whether a suspect is under the influence of drugs and what category of drugs his or her symptoms are consistent with. Some common aspects of a DRE test include:
- Visual inspections: In addition to general observations looking at the general behavior of an individual suspected of a DWI, the DRE officer will also look for any drug debris or discoloration.
- Muscle inspections: Muscles react differently on drugs, and a quick muscle inspection often helps the DRE officer draw conclusions about the amount and type of drugs an individual may be on.
- Vital signs: Like an annual check-up, the DRE will check everything from blood pressure to temperature.
- Eye tests: More detailed than a typical field sobriety test, an eye test will look at public size in various light conditions in addition to looking for other signs of drugs such as eye twitches and an inability to focus.
Although the state requires proper DRE training and specific procedures, a lot of things can go wrong with a New Jersey DRE test that can ultimately cause a judge to question the reliability of the findings. Questioning the reliability of a DRE test is just one of the many defenses available to an individual who is accused of a DWI. Working with an experienced New Jersey DWI/DUI attorney can help reduce or eliminate the very serious charges against you.
If part of the evidence against you in your DWI case is a DRE evaluation, there are still many viable defenses that will call into question the evaluation as well as the overall charge against you. With over 25 years of experience dealing with all kinds of DWI offenses, I have the experience you want on your side. If you are dealing with a DWI charge, give the Law Offices of Thomas Carroll Blauvelt, LLC, a call today. Your initial consultation is always free of charge. I look forward to speaking with you!