New Jersey police departments are running a holiday crackdown on drivers impaired by drugs and alcohol. From December 6 to New Year’s Day, there will be checkpoints and extra patrol out as part of the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over Campaign.” Last year’s ticket blitz resulted in 1,269 driving while intoxicated (DWI) arrests, 5,705 speeding tickets, and 3,125 seat belt summonses. New this year is a law that requires ignition interlock devices for first time DWI convictions.
Many law enforcement agencies received overtime grants for the 2019 Drive Sober holiday campaign, including Barrington, Gloucester Township, Pine Hill, Stratford, and Winslow in Camden County, as well as Clayton, Deptford, East Greenwich, Franklin, Glassboro, Greenwich, Harrison, Mantua, Monroe, Pitman, Rowan University, Washington, Westville, Woodbury Heights, and Woolrich in Gloucester County.
Police set up sobriety checkpoints in areas near entertainment establishments during hours when people are most likely to be drinking and driving, such as weekends, holidays, early morning hours, or late at night. Checkpoints are an opportunity for law enforcement to check tags, licenses, and monitor the condition of the driver. They will note how you pull into the checkpoint and if you are driving erratically.
What to Do at a Checkpoint
If you are stopped at a DUI checkpoint, it is important to wait for instructions from the officer. Do not make sudden movements on your own or get out of the car unless asked to do so. Police are trained to watch for suspicious behavior and protect themselves, so it is best to keep your hands on the wheel where they can be seen until the officer has approached your vehicle. When interacting with police, always be sincerely respectful and courteous. If you offend the officer from the outset with your behavior, they are more likely to write up a negative report or even arrest you.
Avoid Incriminating Yourself
While you should be polite and comply with an officer’s requests, you do not have to answer questions that may incriminate you. You will certainly be asked to give your name, license, registration, and insurance information, but you are not required to answer further questions about how much you have been drinking. The police will pressure you to talk and what you say to them should be truthful. If you only had a few drinks and want to share that information, you can do so while remaining aware that anything you say will go into their report as evidence. If you are unsure of what to say, talk to an experienced criminal attorney before giving a statement to the police. Conviction for a DUI/DWI can have serious consequences, including points on your license, suspension of your license, high fines, and jail time.
Haddonfield Criminal Defense Lawyers at Aita Law, LLC Help Those Facing DUI/DWI Charges
If you are facing DUI/DWI charges, you need an experienced Haddonfield criminal defense lawyer at Aita Law, LLC on your side. We know the New Jersey courts and will defend your rights under the law. Call us at 856-287-7800 today to schedule a free consultation about your case or contact us online. Located in Haddonfield, New Jersey, we represent clients throughout South Jersey, including those in Camden County and Cherry Hill.