Morristown Drug DUI Lawyer
Driving under the Influence of Drugs Attorneys in Morris County, New Jersey
In the United States, sometimes people refer to the drunk driving as “DWI” or “DUI.” In New Jersey, “DWI” refers to “driving while intoxicated,” while “DUI” refers to “driving under the influence,” whether the substance involved is marijuana, cocaine, heroin, or prescription drugs. If you have been charged with either a DWI or a DUI offense in New Jersey, you are going to want to speak to an experienced DUI defense attorney so that you can avoid losing your driver’s license and possibly even going to jail. A Driving Under the Influence of Drugs (DUI) charge is the kind of thing that can happen to anyone. It is not something that you need to be ashamed of, and it is certainly not something that warrants you going to jail.
The Morris County DUI defense attorneys at the Tormey Law Firm have been successfully representing clients charged with driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs throughout Morris County and New Jersey for years. We have defended clients charged with drug DUI, DWI in a School Zone, underage DWI, and other DUI offenses in Mount Olive, Denville, Dover, Rockaway, Roxbury, Morristown, Parsippany, and across the state. In fact, our founding partner, Travis J. Tormey, is one of the few NJ attorneys who are certified Alcotest 7110 operators. The Alcotest is the breath-testing device used throughout the state to prosecute drunk driving cases. As a result, Mr. Tormey knows the components of the machine, how it works, and if there are any issues with the functioning of the breath testing device. This knowledge and expertise can be used to attack the reliability of the breath-test result in your case.
Our team of DUI lawyers is also adept at challenging the state’s case as it relates to lab reports and Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) reports, as well as field sobriety tests, and police protocol in DWI and DUI cases. We utilize this knowledge to poke holes in the prosecution’s arguments and position our clients for the best possible results. Here at the Tormey Law Firm, we understand that a DUI or DWI charge can happen to anyone. If you or a loved one has been charged with a driving under the influence in Morris County, contact The Tormey Law Firm at (908) 336-5008 for a free consultation, or you can use the online contact form to schedule an appointment at our offices in Morristown.
Driving under the Influence of Drugs in New Jersey
Driving under the influence of drugs is governed by the general DWI statute, N.J.S.A. 39:4-50, which provides, in pertinent part:
For a first offense:
(ii) if the person’s blood alcohol concentration is 0.10% or higher, or the person operates a motor vehicle while under the influence of narcotic, hallucinogenic or habit-producing drug, or the person permits another person who is under the influence of narcotic, hallucinogenic or habit-producing drug to operate a motor vehicle owned by him or in his custody or control, or permits another person with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.10% or more to operate a motor vehicle, to a fine of not less than $300 nor more than $500 and a period of detainment of not less than 12 hours nor more than 48 hours spent during two consecutive days of not less than six hours each day and served as prescribed by the program requirements of the Intoxicated Driver Resource Centers established under subsection (f) of this section and, in the discretion of the court, a term of imprisonment of not more than 30 days and shall forthwith forfeit his right to operate a motor vehicle over the highways of this State for a period of not less than seven months nor more than one year.
Elements of a Drug DUI Case in New Jersey
In order to prove a drug DUI in New Jersey, the prosecutor must provide proof that is very different from that offered in an alcohol case. In an alcohol DWI case, the State uses the Alcotest 7110 breath-testing device to prove that the driver was operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol. With a drug DUI case, the State uses a Drug Recognition Expert (known as a “DRE”) who is a law enforcement officer trained to detect whether or not the driver is under the influence of drugs. This DRE performs a series of tests on the driver at the police station and makes a determination as to whether the driver is under the influence of drugs. The DRE also generates a detailed report as to the findings of the testing.
Moreover, the State often takes a urine sample of the driver to test for drugs in the defendant’s system. However, the urine analysis on its own is not necessarily conclusive because, for example, marijuana stays in the defendant’s system for approximately 30 days after use, and, therefore, does not conclusively establish that the driver was under the influence of drugs at the time of operation of the vehicle. On the other hand, the combination of a DRE evaluation and a positive urine test may be enough proof beyond a reasonable doubt to convict the driver of driving under the influence of drugs.
Penalties for Driving under the Influence of Drugs in NJ
A drug DUI is essentially the same as an alcohol DWI on your record, as they are governed by the same statute. Thus, if you have a prior alcohol DWI offense on your record and you are charged with a drug DUI within the next 10 years, you are facing penalties for a second offense DWI in New Jersey, which includes a two-year license suspension and up to 90 days in jail.
The penalties for a drug DUI in New Jersey can be severe. A first offense DUI can result in a period of incarceration of one (1) month in county jail, loss of your driver’s license for between seven (7) months and one (1) year, a requirement to participate in an alcohol education program at the Intoxicated Driver Resource Center (IDRC), and a fine of up to $500. A conviction for a second DUI offense will subject to you to even worse penalties, including up to three (3) months in jail and mandatory suspension of your driver’s license for two (2) years.
Contact a Parsippany DUI Drugs Defense Lawyer for a Free Consultation
As you can see, it is imperative that you have an experienced DUI attorney on your side. If you or a loved one has been charged with driving under the influence of drugs (DUI) in Morris County or elsewhere in New Jersey, contact the Tormey Law Firm in Morristown at (908) 336-5008 for a free consultation. One of our Morris County DUI defense lawyers will be happy to discuss your specific case and answer all of your questions.