A disturbing national trend in alleged alcohol-related accidents involving children is emerging. In the U.S., approximately 20 percent of children who die in car accidents are in crashes that were caused by a drunk driver. Surprisingly, many of those children are in the impaired driver’s car. According to national statistics compiled by one major study, 65 percent of the children killed by drunk drivers are in the impaired driver’s car rather than in the one hit by the driver. Drunk driving is a dangerous crime for the perpetrator and for the victims, and it can come with serious penalties. If you have been charged with DUI in New Jersey, contact a drunk driving lawyer in Asbury Park right away.
Driving Under the Influence
Alcohol impairs the functioning of a person’s brain and affects their attentiveness, decision-making abilities, reaction speed, and judgment. These impairments can have a particularly serious effect on a driver since speedy reactions, clear vision, and the ability to make quick decisions are especially important on the road.
Drunk Driving Penalties
As an Asbury Park drunk driving lawyer can explain, the penalties for drunk driving in New Jersey can be quite serious and include fines, jail time, license suspensions, and the use of an ignition interlock device, although the specifics depend on the person’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) and the number of offenses they have.
For example, a first offense conviction for a driver with a BAC of between .08 and .10 percent will result in:
- A fine of between $250 to $400
- Jail for up to 30 days
- Ignition interlock for three months
- At least six hours in an intoxicated driver resource center
- A driver whose BAC was between .10 and .15 percent faces the above but with a fine of between $300 to $500 and an ignition interlock for seven months.
Additionally, drunk driving can also result in the person being charged with other crimes. If the drunk driver causes an accident that results in a death, the driver could also be charged with vehicular homicide. Vehicular homicide is normally charged as a second-degree felony in New Jersey, and a conviction usually means five to 10 years in state prison along with a fine of up to $150,000. However, if the driver was under the influence at the time of the event, the crime is charged as first degree, which means a prison sentence of 10 to 20 years and a fine of up to $200,000 if convicted.
Don’t Drink and Drive
There are a variety of resources available to people who need a sober ride home after drinking. However, if you have been charged with drunk driving or involved in an accident, contact an Asbury Park drunk driving lawyer right away. Call Rispoli & Borneo P.C. to schedule a free and confidential consultation.