After being pulled over for disobeying a traffic signal in the early morning hours, the driver of a blue 2013 Volkswagen told the responding New Jersey police officer that he couldn’t speak English. The driver claimed that he only understood French, but there was another officer nearby who spoke that language. That officer came to the conclusion that the driver was not fluent in French, and he was subsequently placed under arrest.
Upon being taken to the police department in Morris Township, New Jersey, the man was administered a Breathalyzer test. He failed this test and was then indicted on multiple charges, including drunk driving, driving under a suspended license, driving recklessly, not observing a traffic-control device, backing improperly and not showing valid insurance or vehicle registration documentation. In addition, his alleged lie about only understanding French also earned him a charge of hindering apprehension.
It is unclear how these charges will affect one another. In most cases, however, Pennsylvania drivers who are indicted for multiple violations in addition to drunk driving charges face more severe penalties than they would for just the DUI charge. The same goes for drivers who have received previous intoxicated driving convictions in the past.
Drivers who end up being convicted may find it hard to continue their normal lives. In addition to having their vehicles fitted with expensive interlocks that they may have to pay for, many have difficulty getting to work and dealing with basic responsibilities. Attorneys who can negotiate charges may be able to help these individuals earn acquittals or avoid penalties on the basis of improper arresting procedures or illegal administration of intoxication tests.