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Dan T. Matrafajlo Case Results

State v. R.V. resolution date 03/09/2017

N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 (1st offense DWI reported BAC .18) NOT GUILTY; N.J.S.A. 39:4-56 (Delaying Traffic) GUILTY.

CASE DETAILS:

On December 3, 2016 at approximately 4:44 p.m. a New Jersey police officer was dispatched to the area of the New Jersey State Parkway exit ramp in response to a call that indicated that a man was slumped over the wheel of his vehicle blocking entrance into the parkway off-ramp. Upon arrival the officer observed the individual slumped over in his Ram pickup truck at which time the officer sounded his siren in an attempt to wake up the defendant. The officer approached the passenger side of defendant’s vehicle and requested that the defendant roll down his window. At that point the officer spoke to the defendant, but more importantly, smelled the odor of alcohol emanating from the defendant’s person. The officer began to inquire as to the defendant’s sobriety and on how much he had to drink prior to operating his vehicle. The defendant admitted to having a drink but denied consuming any additional alcohol. At that point the officer requested, based on the scent of alcohol and the defendant’s admission, that the defendant step out of the vehicle to carry out several field sobriety tests. According to the investigating officer, the defendant was unable to successfully carry out the three requested field sobriety tests, which were walk and turn test, one leg stand test, and heel to toe test. At that point the defendant was arrested and charged with driving under the influence in violation of New Jersey’s DWI laws. At the station the defendant was submitted to breath testing which resulted in a BAC level of .18 %. After approximately three moths of litigation, it was found that the defendant was not guilty of driving while intoxicated, but was found guilty of delaying traffic by preventing vehicles from driving onto the parkway exit ramp. The court found that the defendant should not have driven in such a state that the defendant was obviously extremely tired and suffering from a head cold. As such, the court ordered a thirty day loss of the defendant’s New Jersey driving privileges.


State v. S.C. resolution date 12/05/2016

N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 (1st offense DWI) NOT GUILTY; N.J.S.A. 39:4-88 (Traffic on Marked Lanes) NOT GUILTY, N.J.S.A. 39:4-98.09 (Speeding) NOT GUILTY,  N.J.S.A. 39:4-97 (Careless Driving) NOT GUILTY, N.J.S.A. 39:4-96 (Reckless Driving) GUILTY.
CASE DETAILS:

On August 20, 2016 on routine patrol a police officer observed the defendant cross over a solid yellow line on at least two occasions. In addition, the officer observed the defendant speeding by traveling 59 m.p.h. in 50 m.p.h. zone. Based on the officer’s observations, the officer activated his overhead lights and proceeded to stop the defendant for the aforementioned motor vehicle violations. At the time the officer stopped the defendant, the police officer smelled the scent of alcohol emanating from the defendant’s vehicle. The officer began to inquire as to the defendant’s past consumption of alcohol where the defendant had indicated that she had a couple beers a few hours ago. The officer further noted the defendant was replying to his questions with a slurred speech and had blood shot eyes. The police officer then requested the aid of a backup officer and requested that the defendant step out of her vehicle. As per the officer’s instructions, the defendant stepped out of her vehicle and was requested to perform several field sobriety tests. The first test the officer requested was that the defendant perform a horizontal gaze nystagmus test. According to the officer, the defendant failed the test by moving her head and swaying while the instructions were explained to the defendant. The officer further noted that there was distinct and sustained nystagmus and maximum deviation in both of the defendant’s eyes. The second test the officer requested that the defendant perform was a walk and turn test, where the officer had opined that the defendant failed to carry out the test as per his instructions. The third test the officer requested that the defendant perform was the heel to toe test, which according to the officer, the defendant failed. The fourth test requested by the officer was a one leg stand test, where once again the officer had indicated that defendant failed the test. The officer made a fifth request of the defendant, which was to recite the alphabet starting with E and ending with S, which the defendant, according to the officer, properly carried out. Based on the foregoing, the officer placed the defendant under arrest for driving under the influence of alcohol plus the additional citations set forth above. At the police precinct, defendant submitted to breath testing which was performed by a certified police test operator utilizing the Alcotest 7110 and resulted in a B.A.C level of .09%. On December 5, 2016 the State dismissed the DWI charge in violation of N.J.S.A. 39:4-50, including the remaining charges, except that the defendant did plead guilty to a violation of N.J.S.A. 39:4-96 (Reckless Driving). As a result of the plea to the Reckless Driving the defendant was sentenced to a 30 day license suspension.


State v. N. F. Resolution Date: 11/28/2016
 N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 (2nd offense DWI), NOT GUILTY, N.J.S.A. 39:4-96 (Reckless Driving), GUILTY, N.J.S.A. 39:4-98.14 (Speeding) NOT GUILTY
CASE DETAILS:
On April 16, 2016 local police were conducting traffic enforcement in a marked vehicle in a parking lot located next to a major highway. At that time and date, the local police officer observed a red Ford vehicle traveling at a high rate of speed, specifically 45 m.p.h. in a 35 m.p.h. zone. According to the officer, he utilized a laser speed measuring device to determine the defendant’s speed, which was 45 in a 35.  At that point in time, the stationed officer activated his emergency lights and siren and effectuated a motor vehicle stop of the Ford. At the stop the investigating police officer approached the defendant driver. As the officer approached the vehicle he immediately smelled an strong odor of alcohol emanating from the interior of the vehicle. The officer inquired of the defendant driver as to the reason for the smell of alcohol, where the defendant driver acknowledged that he was just returning from the local bar and had consumed several beers “but that was it”. The officer further observed that the defendant driver’s speech was slurred, he was fumbling for his credentials, and seemed evasive. Based on the observations made by the investigating officer the defendant was asked to step out of his vehicle to perform various field sobriety tests. According to the officer, defendant failed several field sobriety tests, specifically heel to toe test, walk and turn test, and one leg stand test. The defendant was placed under arrest for driving under the influence and brought to the local police station. At the police station the defendant submitted to breath testing that resulted in a B.A.C. level of .19%. After approximately 7 months of litigation, the second offense DWI or N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 was dismissed, the speeding ticket was dismissed, but defendant did plead guilty to violating N.J.S.A. 39:4-96, or reckless driving, and sentenced to a 6 month loss of his New Jersey driving privileges.  The court assessed a fine in the total amount of $206.00.

STATE V. K.W. (Resolution Date: September 12, 2016)

2nd Offense DWI (Dismissed), Reckless Driving (Guilty)

CASE DETAILS:

On March 23, 2016 at approximately 10:00 p.m. a 911 call was placed by a concerned citizen indicating that the driver was leaving a bar and she was impaired. The concerned citizen provided the details of the driver’s vehicle, including registration and the callers observations of the driver’s apparent impaired state of being. The 911 call tape was dispatched to the surrounding police departments that came across the apparent drunk driver’s vehicle. As a result thereof, the investigating police officer stopped the vehicle at issue and began an DWI investigation. The driver was requested to exit the vehicle and perform various field sobriety tests, which according to the officer, the driver had failed. The officer opined that the driver failed the heal-to-toe test, walk-and-turn test, and the HGN test. The driver was brought into the precinct to submit to breath testing that resulted in a reported B.A.C. level of .22%. As a consequence, the driver/defendant was issued summonses for N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 & N.J.S.A. 39:4-96 (Reckless Driving). After months of litigation and a successful Holup Motion, the DWI charge was dismissed; however the defendant did plea guilty to Reckless Driving in violation of N.J.S.A. 39:4-96.


State v. E. B. (Resolution Date May 25, 2016)

1st Offense DWI N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 (DISMISSED); N.J.S.A. 39:4- 96 (Reckless Driving, Guilty); N.J.S.A. 39:4- 81(Failure to Observe Traffic Signal, DISMISSED); and N.J.S.A. 39:4- 126 (Failure to Give Proper Signal, DISMISSED)

CASE DETAILS:

On May 24, 2015 at approximately 2:46 a.m. an officer observed the Defendant drive through a red light without signaling while turning right on the intersecting roadway. The officer observed the driver’s eyes to be blood shot and glossy. Based on the foregoing the officer requested that the driver exit the vehicle in order to conduct field sobriety tests. The three field sobriety tests requested by the officer, to be carried out were: Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus, Heel to Toe, and Walk and Turn test. According to the officer, the subject driver failed all three tests. As a result, the officer arrested the subject driver for driving under the influence, including the other listed charges. At the police station the officer observed the subject for twenty minutes before administering the Alcotest. According to the Alcotest results the subject driver was operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol with a B.A.C. of .11%. The officer further performed Worksheet A, as required under State v. Chun and the aforementioned breath test were within tolerance or valid. After approximately one year of litigation the DWI charge was dismissed.  However, the Defendant/subject driver was found guilty to operating a motor vehicle in violation of N.J.S.A 39:4-96 (reckless driving) and was sentenced to 45 days of NO driving in the State of New Jersey.


State v. S.B. (Resolution Date April 28, 2016)

1 offense DWI N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 (DISMISSED), N.J.S.A. 39:4-50(g) (Operating Under the Influence in a School Zone) (DISMISSED); N.J.S.A. 39:4-96 (Reckless Driving) (DISMISSED);  N.J.S.A. 39:4-97 (Careless Driving) (GUILTY);  and N.J.S.A. 39:3-47(a) (Improper Lighting Equipment) (DISMISSED).

CASE DETAILS:

According to the investigating police officer’s narrative on October 2, 2015 at approximately 10:25 p.m. officers were dispatched to a motor vehicle accident involving the Defendant. Upon arrival, the investigating officers observed an SUV vehicle operated by the Defendant that struck several parked vehicles. The officers then proceeded to the Defendant’s vehicle in order to question the Defendant as to the circumstances of the accident. Upon approaching Defendant’s vehicle, the officers observed the Defendant to be incoherent, slow, speaking with a slurred voice, and unable to articulate a sentence. In addition, the investigating officer noted that he detected a strong odor of alcoholic beverage emanating from the Defendant’s breath. As a result thereof, investigating officers requested medical attention because of the condition of the Defendant. Medical personnel arrived and transported the Defendant to the local hospital for emergent evaluation. At the hospital, the Defendant’s blood was drawn in order to evaluate it for alcohol. According to the lab analysis that was rendered, the Defendant’s blood alcohol level was approximately .15%.  As a result, the State filed multiple charges against the defendant as fully listed above.  Dan T. Matrafajlo, attached the accuracy and the handling of the blood sample by hiring a toxicologist to review the analysis of the State toxicologist’s conclusion that the Defendant’s blood alcohol level was at a .15%.  The case proceeded to a trial that lasted two days, the Court found the Defendant NOT GUILTY of operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol in violation of N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 and the operating a vehicle under the influence in a school zone. However, the Defendant was found guilty of operating a motor vehicle in a careless manner in violation of N.J.S.A. 39:4-97 and was ordered to pay the Court a fine in the amount of $89.00, the remaining motor vehicle charges were dismissed by the State’s motion.


State v. R.W. (Resolution date April 25, 2016) 1st offense DWI (N.J.S. 39.4-50) DISMISSED; Open Container of Alcohol (N.J.S. 39:4-51B) DISMISSED; Reckless Driving (N.J.S. 39:4-96) Guilty with 30 Days loss of New Jersey Driving Privileges;

CASE DETAILS:

On September 27, 2015 Amanda Rivera was charged with 39:4-50, 39:4-138D, 39:4-138F, and 39:4-51B (open container). According to the police officer’s description of the incident a 911 call was placed indicating that an individual was sleeping in a vehicle that was running, the break lights were activated, and was improperly parked on the street. The responding officers appeared and observed the individual asleep in an improperly parked automobile. The officers further observed a pedestrian reach into the suspect vehicle and turn off the vehicle while the driver remained asleep. According to the investigating officer’s account he approached the driver and attempted to wake her up. The investigating officer was able to wake the driver and had began to question her on how she ended up at her destination. The driver had indicated she was attempting to drive to a friend’s house, but never made it. At that point the officer requested the driver step out of the vehicle to perform field sobriety tests, which, according to the officer, were all failed by the driver. The driver was arrested and subsequently submitted to breath testing that resulted in a .13 BAC. The matter was scheduled for trial that resulted in a dismissal of all charges, but a guilty finding to reckless driving with a 30 day loss of driving privileges in the State of New Jersey.


State v. J.F. (Resolution date November 11, 2015)
3rd Offense DWI (NJSA 39:4-50), Reckless driving, Speeding (NJSA 39:4-96), Driving with a Suspended Driver’s License (NJSA 39:3-40).

The defendant, J.F., was charged with a 3rd offense DWI after he was stopped traveling 79 mph in a 55 mph zone. The defendant submitted to breath testing that indicated a BAC level of .14%. After a trial in the Municipal Court of New Jersey, the Municipal Court Judge found the defendant NOT GUILTY of driving under the influence of alcohol (DWI), reckless driving and speeding. However, the defendant was found guilty of driving with a suspended driver’s license. As a result of the NOT GUILTY findings rendered by the Municipal Court Judge the Defendant eluded a
mandatory 6 month jail term, substantial fines and 10 years loss of his driver’s privileges!!


State v. P.P. Resolution Date: June 15, 2015

N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 (DWI, BAC .11) Dismissed. N.J.S.A. 39:4-126, Failure to Give Proper Signal, Guilty; N.J.S.A. 39:4-88b Failure to Maintain Lane, Guilty. N.J.S.A. 39:4-49.1 Operating a Motor Vehicle in Possession of A Controlled Dangerous Substance, Dismissed; N.J.S.A. 2C:29-2A (1), Resisting Arrest, Dismissed; N.J.S.A. 2C:29-3B (1), Hinder His Own Investigation, Dismissed.

CASE DETAILS:

On November 28, 2014 the defendant was charged with Driving under the Influence of Alcohol in violation of N.J.S.A. 39:4-50, Failure to Give Proper Signal in violation of N.J.S.A. 39:4-126, Failure to Maintain Lane in violation of N.J.S.A. 39:4-88b, Operating a Motor Vehicle in Possession of A Controlled Dangerous Substance in violation of N.J.S.A. 39:4-49.1, Possession of a CDS of less than 50 grams in violation of, Resisting Arrest by Preventing a Law Enforcement Officer from Making a Lawful Arrest which was in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:29-2A (1), and Attempt to Hinder His Own Investigation or Prosecution in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:29-3B (1).

According to the investigating police officer’s account of the situation, while on routine patrol the arresting police officer observed a vehicle exit a 7 Eleven convenience store and drive over the curb and accelerate at a high rate of speed. At that point the arresting officer attempted to catch up to the vehicle and as he got closer he observed the vehicle drift into the oncoming lane of traffic several times. The officer continued to observe the vehicle until the subject vehicle reached a spot where a safe traffic stop could take place, at which point the arresting officer effectuated a motor vehicle stop. As the officer approached the vehicle, he observed the defendant/driver’s eyes were blood-shot and a strong odor of alcoholic beverage emanated from his breath. As the officer spoke to the defendant/driver, he observed that the defendant’s eyes, besides being blood-shot, were watery, the defendant/driver was fumbling around and his speech was slurred. The officer asked where the defendant/driver was coming from and if he had consumed any alcoholic beverages before prior to driving. The defendant/driver indicated that, “yes, it’s Thanksgiving and I had a few drinks”. At that point in time the officer the defendant/driver exit the vehicle to perform various field sobriety tests. The officer requested that the defendant/driver perform the walk and turn test, one leg stand test, and heel to toe test. According to the police officer’s investigation report, the defendant/driver failed all three tests and was placed under arrest. After placing the defendant/driver under arrest the arresting officer pats down the defendant and stumbles across marijuana and other CDS on the defendant’s person. The officer then places the defendant in the back of the patrol car and searches the defendant’s vehicle where the officer discovers a jar containing two pills that were the generic form of Xanex. Apparently prior to the defendant’s arrest, the defendant fought with the arresting officer in an attempt to prevent the officer from placing handcuffs upon the defendant to effectuate his arrest. As a result of the foregoing the defendant was brought to the police precinct and requested to submit to a breath test. According to the Alcotest results the defendant’s BAC level was .11%, prompting the outlined charges.


State v. L.H. Resolution Date: December 16, 2014

1st offense DWI reported BAC .10% (N.J.S. 39.4-50) DISMISSED; Speeding (NJSA 39:4-98) GUILTY

CASE DETAILS:

According to the police officer’s narrative, on August 24, 2014 a vehicle was observed traveling northbound with a speed indicated by the radar unit @ 49 m.p.h in a 25 m.p.h zone. Officers stopped vehicle for speeding. Once officers approached the driver’s and passenger side of the vehicle, the scent of alcohol emanating from the vehicle was distinctively noted. Defendant admitted to ingesting alcohol at a local bar immediately prior to stop but indicated that he only consume “some jack Daniels with coke.” Police requested the subject driver exit the vehicle to perform various field sobriety tests but the driver did indicate he was suffering from a knee injury. One of the officers, had the defendant/driver submitted to a portable breath tester which resulted with a positive reading for alcohol. Defendant was arrested and brought to station where he submitted to breath testing utilizing the Alcotest 7110 that reported a .10 BAC reading.


State v. A.W. Resolution Date: October 21, 2014

1st offense DWI (N.J.S. 39.4-50) DISMISSED; Refusal to Submit to a Breathalyzer (N.J.S. 39:4-50.2) DISMISSED; Careless Driving-2pts (N.J.S. 39:4-97) DISMISSED; Leaving the Scene of an Accident (39:4-129) GUILTY

CASE DETAILS:

According to the police officer’s narrative, on March 18, 2014, the officer responded to an accident, whereupon he encountered a green sedan with heavy rear end damage. After following a trail of fluid leaving the scene the officer located a silver sedan, driven by defendant, A.W.. The vehicle had sustained heavy front end damage, and was smoking heavily. During the officer inquiry, the defendant indicated leaving the scene in an attempt to “make it home.” Upon further investigation, the officer noticed that the defendant had watery bloodshot eyes, and droopy eyelids. After questioning, the defendant admitted to leaving a bar but only having “one” drink. The officer requested that the defendant step-out of the vehicle and perform several filed sobriety tests, namely: alphabet test, walk and turn test, and one leg stand test. According to the officer, the defendant failed all three field sobriety tests. As such, the defendant was arrested for driving under the influence, leaving the scene of an accident, and careless driving. At the station the driver was read New Jersey Attorney General’s Standard Statement for Motor Vehicle Operations at which defendant refused to submit to breath testing. The Defendant was subsequently charged with refusal to submit to a Breathalyzer. The defendant retained my services and after months of litigation the defendants DWI, Refusal to Submit to a Breathalyzer, and Careless Driving charges were all dismissed. The defendant did plead guilty to Leaving the Scene of an Accident.


State v. A.H. Resolution date: October 1, 2014

CASE DETAILS:

1st offense DWI (N.J.S. 39.4-50) DISMISSED; Drug Possession by a Motor Vehicle Operator ( N.J.S. 39:4-49.1) Dismissed; Unlicensed Driver (N.J.S. 39:3-10) DISMISSED; Careless Driving-2pts (N.J.S. 39:4-97) Dismissed; Failure to Maintain Lane-2pts (N.J.S. 39:4-88b) Dismissed.

The defendant was traveling on the wrong way on a one way street. As a result, the defendant motorist was stopped by a police officer that smelt alcohol emanating from the defendant’s motor-vehicle. According, to the investigating police officer the defendant failed two field sobriety tests and was arrested for DWI. On October 1, 2014 the Court dismissed the DWI and all other remaining charges!


State v.L.Q. Resolution date: January 15, 2014.

CASE DETAILS:

1st offense DWI with BAC level of .08% (N.J.S. 39:4-50) DISMISSED, N.J.S.A 39:4-144 Failure to Stop or Yield-2pts, GUILTY, N.J.S.A 39:4-126, Failure to signal turn-2pts, GUILTY, N.J.S.A 39:4-49.1 (CDS in motor vehicle) DISMISSED, N.J.S.A 2c: 35-10A(1) ACCEPTED-CONDITIONAL DISCHARGE-DISMISSED AFTER 1 YEAR OF SUCCESSFUL COMPLETION OF PROBATION.

CASE DETAILS:

According to the police officer’s narrative, on August 25, 2013, defendant, L.Q., failed to stop at a stop sign then failed to signal before turning right. Officer stopped defendant, L.Q. and during the motor vehicle stop the officer immediately began to smell a strong odor of alcohol emanating from the interior of the vehicle. The officer then began to question the defendant. During the officer inquiry, the defendant admitted to leaving a bar but only having a “few” drinks. The officer requested that the defendant step-out of the vehicle and perform several filed sobriety tests, namely: HGN, walk and turn and one leg stand test. According to the officer, the defendant failed all three field sobriety tests. As such, the defendant was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol. At the police station, the defendant’s pocket’s where emptied and the officer found, in the defendant’s possession, a control dangerous substance wrapped in a dollar bill. After five months of litigation, the DWI charged against the defendant was dismissed; however the defendant had to plead guilty to two moving violations and enroll into the conditional discharge program in connection with the CDS charge. Notwithstanding, the defendant did NOT lose his privileges to drive a motor vehicle -despite pleading guilty to two traffic offenses!

 


 

State v.J.B. Resolution date: November 18, 2013.

1st offense DWI with BAC @ .12% (N.J.S. 39:4-50) DISMISSED, NJSA 39:4-97 CARELESS DRIVING-2pts, DISMISSED, NJSA 39:3-40, Driving on the Revoked List, DISMISSED, N.J.S.A 39:4-50.14 (Operation of a Motor Vehicle by a person who consumed alcohol but is under the legal age) GUILTY (30 days loss of New Jersey Driving privileges–NO STATE SURCHARGES).

CASE DETAILS:

According to the police officer’s narrative, on August 15, 2013, defendant, J.B., was traveling his vehicle at a high rate of speed and changed lanes without signalling, despite construction taking place on the roadway in question. In response, the officer turned his vehicles overhead lights and attempted to stop J.B. who continued to drive by making a right turn then accelerated. The officer immediately activated his sirens and finally stopped the vehicle in a residential driveway. Upon officer inquiry, the defendant admitted to drinking a couple of “beers.” Given that the defendant, J.B., was a minor, the officer immediately arrested the defendant and transported the defendant, J.B. to police headquarters. At headquarters, the defendant submitted to breath testing that resulted in a BAC level .12% (which is above the New Jersey legal limit of .08%). The defendant was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, careless driving, driving with a suspended license, and drinking and driving under the legal age. The defendant retained my services which resulted in the dismissal of the DWI, and a dismissal of all other charge except that the defendant did plead guilty to drinking as a minor that resulted in a 30 day loss of driving privileges in the State of New Jersey, community service, and an alcohol abuse educational class. The aforementioned plea will have no serious consequences on the defendant’s driver’s record whatsoever.

 


 

State v.H.C. Resolution date: October 28, 2013.

2nd offense DWI with BAC @ .19% (N.J.S. 39:4-50) DISMISSED, CARELESS DRIVING-2pts, GUILTY (30 days loss of New Jersey Driving privileges).

CASE DETAILS:

On March 3, 2013 H.C. was involved in a head on collision that required police and ambulance assistance. At the moment the police arrived, they observed the defendant standing next to his vehicle distraught, nervous and leaning against his car for support. The investigating officer smells the scent of alcohol emitting from the defendant that prompted an inquiry by the officer on whether or not the defendant consumed any alcoholic beverages. Upon officer inquiry, the defendant admitted to drinking a couple of mixed vodka drinks. In response, the officer requested the defendant perform various field sobriety tests which included HGN, walk and turn and heel to toe tests. The officer opined that defendant failed all three field sobriety tests resulting in the defendant’s arrest and charge for DWI in the State of New Jersey (as a second time offender). At the police precinct the defendant submitted to a breath test that resulted in a .19% BAC. The defendant retained my services which resulted in the dismissal of the DWI, a guilty plea to Careless Driving in violation of N.J.S.A. 39:4-97 with a 30 day loss of driving privileges in the State of New Jersey. The plea to the Careless Driving ticket resulted in the assessment of two motor vehicle points upon the defendant’s New Jersey driver’s privileges, but the much more serious charge of Driving Under the Influence of alcohol was dismissed in its entirety.

 


 

State v.Z.E. Resolution date: May 23, 2013.

1st offense DWI (N.J.S. 39:4-50) DISMISSED, Failure to Maintain Lane (N.J.S. 39:4-88b) DISMISSED, Reckless Driving (N.J.S. 39:4-96) AMENDED TO CARELESS DRIVING-2pts, Refusal to Submit (N.J.S. 39:4-50.2) GUILTY, Tinted Windows (N.J.S.A. 39:3-74) DISMISSED.

CASE DETAILS:

According to the Officer’s narrative, April 5, 2013 while on patrol in marked unit officer observed a vehicle bearing NJ registration not maintaining its lane of travel. Officer indicates he observed the vehicle drift back and forth in the lane in a serpentine manner touching the lane markings on both the drivers side and passenger side wheels. This vehicle also had tinted windows. The officer stopped vehicle and approached driver. Officer indicated driver later identified as E. B, had trouble pulling the registration and insurance card out of the plastic holder. The driver had blood shot eyes and watery eyes and the odor of alcohol emanated from the interior of the vehicle. At which point, the officer demanding the driver to step out of the vehicle in order to perform various field sobriety tests. Outside the vehicle, the officer indicated the driver failed the HGN test (Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus), one leg stand tests and heel-to-toe test. As a result, the driver was arrested for DWI. At the station the driver was read New Jersey Attorney General’s Standard Statement for Motor Vehicle Operations dated July 1, 2012 at which point the driver/defendant replied “No” would not submit to breath testing. Notwithstanding, the DWI charge was dismissed against the driver.

 


 

State v.W.S. Resolution date: April 4, 2013.

1st offense DWI with BAC @ .16% (N.J.S. 39:4-50), Trial Verdict of Not Guilty.

CASE DETAILS:

According to the Officer’s narrative, on January 1, 2013 police responded to an intersection for a report of an unresponsive male behind the wheel of a smoking vehicle. Upon Officer arrival EMS was on scene and the officers observed defendant’s vehicle running and smoking. In response, police pull defendant out of vehicle. The defendant driver was mumbling and generally out of it. Officers immediately asked the defendant/driver if he had alcohol and the defendant responded that he had 4 to 6 beers at the local bar approximately two blocks away. The police requested the defendant to perform various field sobriety tests. The defendant failed each of the three field sobriety tests resulting in his arrest. At the station, the defendant/motorist submitted to a breath test which resulted in a .16 BAC reading. The case proceeded to a trial and the hearing Judge ruled in defendant/motorists favor by dismissing the DWI charge.

 


 

State v. K.S. Resolution date: January 12, 2012.

2nd offense DWI (N.J.S. 39:4-50), Directed Verdict of Not Guilty. Failure to maintain lane (N.J.S. 39:4-88b),Dismissed. Reckless Driving (N.J.S. 39:4-96), Guilty and a90 day loss of New Jersey drunk driving privileges was imposed by the Court.

CASE DETAILS:

According to the Officer’s narrative, on Tuesday, August 23, 2011 while on patrol and working an “over the limit, under arrest” detail, the officer was traveling the area of Route 1 and Jersey avenue. As the officer proceeded north of Jersey Avenue he observed a Chevy Blazer SUV drift from the center portion of the lane, cross over the double yellow lines with the left tire, straddle the line momentarily and drift back to the center of the northbound lane. The officer further observed the defendant regain directional control, the vehicle then drifted right and the vehicle’s right side tires crossed the white fog line on the right side of the north bound lane. At that time the officer effectuated a motor vehicle stop.

The officer further opined that the defendant/motorist spoke with a slur and upon approaching defendant/motorist’s vehicle the odor of alcohol emanated from the vehicle. At that point, the officer demanded that the motorist exit the vehicle and perform field sobriety tests, such as the walk and turn, heel to toe and HGN. According to the officer, the defendant/motorist failed all field sobriety tests. At the station, the defendant/motorist submitted to a breath test which resulted in a .08 BAC reading.

 


 

State v. R.E. Resolution date: November 22, 2011.

DWI offense (N.J.S. 39:4-50), Dismissed. Failure to maintain lane (N.J.S. 39:4-88b),Dismissed. Reckless Driving (N.J.S. 39:4-96), Guilty and a 30 day loss of New Jersey driving privileges was imposed by the Court.

CASE DETAILS:

On September 4, 2011, defendant/motorist was involved in a multiple vehicle accident whereby, defendant/motorist slammed into the rear of the vehicle directly in-front of him sending that vehicle into a spin. The defendant’s vehicle sustained heavy front end damage and was rendered disable at the scene of the accident. New Jersey State Police arrived at the scene of the accident to provide assistance. According to the arriving New Jersey State trooper, defendant eyes appeared bloodshot and watery, plus the odor of alcoholic beverage emanated from the defendant. At that point the trooper requested the defendant carry-out various field sobriety tests such as HGN, heel-to-toe and one-leg stand. Apparently, defendant failed.

At the New Jersey State Police Newark Station defendant submitted to a breath test which rendered a result of .08. Defendant was charged with DWI, reckless driving and failure to maintain lane.

 


 

State v. R.W. Resolution date: August 9, 2007.

4th offense DWI (39:4-50), Dismissed.

Case Details:

On June 19, 2011 police were dispatched near motorist/defendant’s home on the report of a possibly intoxicated driver operating a vehicle with two children inside. The police officers were told by dispatch that they received a call from the defendant’s ex-wife indicating that he left a barbecue after drinking all afternoon. The ex-wife further indicated she spoke to her ex on the phone advising him not to drive, but he refused her plea and said he was driving the kids home. The officers stopped the defendant’s vehicle and observed him drinking a Heineken beer in the car along with his two children. The officers claimed the defendant failed both field sobriety tests given at the scene. They further claimed the defendant urinated on himself at the precinct.

 


 

State v. C.F. Resolution date: September 21, 2011.

DWI (39:4-50), Dismissed.

CASE DETAILS:

On June 13, 2010 campus police observed a Toyota SUV making a u-turn without its headlights on and was traveling 5-10 miles under the posted speed limit. The investigating officer executed a motor vehicle stop. According to the officer, when he approached the vehicle he observed a female driver who was having trouble opening the window and kept “fumbling” around. The officer noted that he smelled alcohol coming from the vehicle and the motorist/defendant was disoriented and spoke with slurred speech. The officer then requested the defendant to perform various field sobriety tests. She refused and became combative and was taken to the hospital for psychiatric evaluation based on her continued screams of wanting to die. At the hospital, the officer had blood drawn from the defendant to determine if she had ingested any alcohol or illegal substances. The lab report returned with positive findings for cocaine and ethyl alcohol.

 


 

State v. P.S. Resolution date: April 26, 2010.

DWI (39:4-50), charged with a .13% reading suppressed.

Speeding (39:4-98), Dismissed.

Improper passing (39:4-85), Dismissed .
Case Details:

According to the police officer, I was on patrol when i observed a vehicle stopped in traffic and honking its horn. When the traffic light changed to green, the car sped north on 1&9 passing several vehicles on the right side. I eventually caught up to the vehicle that was traveling in excess of 60 mph. I approached the car and asked the driver for his license, registration and insurance card. I observed his eyes were red and watery. While the driver attempted to get his credentials the officer noticed that the driver’s hands where fumbling and scent of alcohol emanated from the vehicle. The driver then admitted to having a few beers. Thereafter, the officer requested the driver to perform various field sobriety tests including one leg stand and walk and turn test-which the officer related that the driver failed. The officer indicated the driver acknowledged that he was not suffering from any type of injuries that would have impeded his ability to perform the FSTs. At the station, the driver submitted to breath testing which resulted in a reading of .13%. After a 104 hearing the driver/defendant’s breath test result indicating a BAC level of .13% where suppressed.

 


 

State v. A.G. Resolution date: September 21, 2010.

DWI (39:4-50), Dismissed.
Refusal to Submit to Breathalyzer (39:4-50.2), Dismissed.
Open Alcohol Container (39:4-51b), Dismissed .
Refusing to Cooperate with Police Direction, Amended to City Ordinance. (2C:29-1A amended to 14-3)

CASE DETAILS:

Motorist/defendant lost control of his vehicle and struck a telephone pole. According to police report, the accident took place in front of a stationed police officer patrolling the area. According to the officer, he observed the defendant exit his vehicle and attempt to flee the scene of the accident on foot. The officer immediately intercepted him and observed: inability to stand properly, staggering, fumbling, slurred speech, and smell of alcohol coming from the defendant. The officer requested the defendant to carry out field sobriety tests, and the officer’s opinion was he failed. BAC level .11%

 


 

State v. T. L. Resolution date: October 13, 2009.

Second DWI Offense (39:4-50), Dismissed.
Leaving Scene of Accident, Amended to failure to report. (39:4-129 amended to 39:4-130)

State v. M.S. Resolution date: March 31, 2011.

No Insurance, Amended to failure to exhibit. (39:6b-2 to 39:3-29).

Case Details:Officer charged defendant for no insurance and failure to register vehicle. Defendant had no insurance on his vehicle (titled in his name). Defendant permitted insurance coverage to lapse. No loss of driving privileges.

Speeding 120/55 (39:4-98), Dismissed.
Reckless Driving (39:4-96), Dismissed.
Improper Lane Change (39:4-88), Dismissed.

 


 

State. A.G. Resolution date: March 20, 2011.

 

CASE DETAILS:

Motorist/defendant was involved in a single vehicle auto accident where he struck a light post. The officer dispatched to the scene observed the defendant unable to stand for any period of time, slurring his speech, disoriented, and unable to speak coherently. The officer demanded the defendant to perform field sobriety tests, such as: heel/toe and one-leg stand. According to the investigating officer the defendant failed all tests.

Third DWI Offense (39:4-50), Dismissed.

 


 

State v. R.W. Resolution date: August 9, 2007.

CASE DETAILS:

Same defendant as above. Charged with fourth DWI offense which occurred in the same week as the third DWI offense. Motorist/defendant left his home and drove to Blockbuster Video. Leaving Blockbuster the defendant drove over a curb and a concerned citizen telephoned police about a possibly intoxicated driver. The citizen described defendant’s vehicle to police and provided his license plate number. Police stopped defendant outside his house and commenced investigation for DWI.

Fourth DWI Offense (39:4-50), Dismissed.

 



State v. R.W. Resolution date: August 9, 2007.

HONORABLE MENTIONS

State v. A. M. Resolution date 02/18/2015

1st offense DWI in violation of N.J.S.A. 39:3-50 driving under the influence of alcohol (.14 BAC) reading suppressed, N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 (G) driving under the influence in a school zone, N.J.S.A. 39:4-96 reckless driving, N.J.S.A. 39:4-97 careless driving,
N.J.S.A. 39:4-97.2 operating in an unsafe manner, N.J.S.A. 39:4-88 failure to maintain lane, N.J.S.A. 39:4-88A failure to keep right with marked lanes, N.J.S.A. 39:82.1 improper use of divided highway, N.J.S.A. 39:4-82 failure to keep right, N.J.S.A. 39:4-67 obstructing traffic, N.J.S.A. 39:4-63 injurious substances, N.J.S.A. 39:4-56 delaying traffic, N.J.S.A. 39:4-71 driving on sidewalk, N.J.S.A. 39:3-75 improper safety glass.

According to the Police Officer’s account of the events that took place, Defendant/motorist was involved in an auto accident where he lost control of his vehicle and struck an oncoming motorist causing substantial damages reacquiring police assistance. Upon police arrival, the investigating officer noticed that the defendant/motorist’s face was extremely flushed and his eyes were watery and bloodshot. The officer also detected an order of an alcohol beverage emanating from the defendant/motorist’s breath. The officer then questioned the defendant as to whether or not the defendant had anything to drink and the defendant replied that yes he did. Thereafter, the police officer requested several field sobriety tests, such as: the horizontal gaze nystagmus, walk and turn test, and one leg stand test. According to the officer the defendant failed all three tests promptly resulting in his arrest and apprehension. At the police headquarters, the defendant submitted to breath testing which resulted in a B blood content alcohol level of .14. Defendant was issued the above listed summonses. After approximately five months of litigation, the defendant’s breath test reading of .14 was suppressed by the Court and the defendant entered into a plea on an observational case that resulted in a three (3) month loss of his driving privileges in the State of New Jersey. The remaining summonses issued to the defendant were all dismissed in their entirety.

 


 

State v. C.D. Resolution Date: June 18, 2014

1st offense DWI with a BAC level of .14% (N.J.S. 39:4-50) BAC reading was suppressed and defendant pled guilty to first tier DWI resulting in a 3 month loss of New Jersey driver’s privileges; Reckless Driving-5pts (N.J.S. 39:4-96) DISMISSED; Speeding-4pts (N.J.S. 39:4-98) DISMISSED; Failure to Maintain Lane-2pts (N.J.S. 39:4-88b) DISMISSED.

According to the police officer’s narrative, on February 24, 2014, defendant, C.D., was traveling her vehicle at a high rate of speed while drifting in and out of the lane markings. In response, the officer activated his emergency equipment and initiated a motor vehicle stop. During the officer inquiry, the officer noticed the defendant fumbling and dropping things on her lap while trying to retrieve her registration and insurance card. During questioning, the defendant admitted coming from a local bar where she had “two drinks.” When asked by the officer what she was drinking, the defendant responded by saying “vodka cranberries.” The officer indicated the defendant’s speech was “slow, muffled, and slurred.” At which point, the officer demanded the defendant to step out of the vehicle where he detected a strong odor of alcohol emanating from the defendant’s breath, as well as her having bloodshot watery eyes, and droopy eye lids. The officer then requested that the defendant perform several filed sobriety tests, namely: HGN, walk and turn and one leg stand test. According to the officer, the defendant failed all three field sobriety tests. As such, the defendant was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol, reckless driving, speeding, and failure to maintain lane. At the New Jersey State Police Barracks the defendant submitted to a breath test that resulted in a .14% BAC. The defendant retained my services and after months of litigation the defendant’s reckless driving, speeding, and failure to maintain lane tickets were dismissed. Most importantly, I was able to have the BAC reading of .014% suppressed. In response, defendant pled guilty to first tier DWI- resulting in a three month driver’s license suspension.

 


 

State v. R.H. (resolution date 8/19/2014)

Defendant was charged with N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 (DWI with a BAC level of .12%), N.J.S.A. 39:4-97 (Careless Driving), N.J.S.A. 39:4-88 (failure to observe traffic lanes), N.J.S.A. 39:4-88b (failure to maintain lane), N.J.S.A. 39:3-75 (tinted windows), and N.J.S.A. 39:4-51B (open container of alcohol).

Defendant was observed by local police driving at a high rate of speed, driving through a stop sign and weaving within his lane of travel. The defendant’s vehicle was tinted and defendant had an open container of beer in the vehicle. After the court granting defenses’s Holup motion, defendant’s BAC level of .12 was suppressed. As a consequence, defendant plead guilty to a first tier DWI that resulted in a 3 months loss of driving privileges. All the other tickets where dismissed.

 


 

State v. J.B. (resolution date 7/25/2014)

Defendant was charged with N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 (DWI with a BAC level of .21%) and N.J.S.A. 39:4-97 (Careless Driving).

According to the police officers narrative of events, defendant/motorist was traveling westbound when the police officer observed the defendant weaving in the roadway for a considerable period of time. At that point, the police officer decided to stop the defendant/motorist for suspicion of drunk driving. While speaking to the defendant the officer observed the defendant/motorist’s speech was slurred, droopy- bloodshot and water eyes. The officer noted that the smell of alcohol was emanating from the defendant’s vehicle. In addition, the defendant’s speech was slurred. The defendant failed all three roadside field sobriety tests given by the officer. The defendant was arrested and transported to police headquarters. At police headquarters, defendant submitted to two breath test utilizing the Alcotest BAC tester which indicated a BAC level of .21%.

After successful litigation, DWI attorney Dan Matrafajlo was able to suppress the .21% B.A.C reading resulting in the defendant losing her driving privileges in the State of New Jersey for a period of no greater then 3 months. All the other summons issued were dismissed as part of the plea.

 


 

State v. G.G. (resolution date 6/24/2014)

Defendant was charged with N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 (DWI) N.J.S.A. 39:4-66 (Maintenance of Lamps), N.J.S.A. 39:4-88(failure to maintain lane of travel), N.J.S.A. 39:4-96 (Reckless Driving).

According to the police officers narrative of events, defendant motorist was traveling with his tail light out. As a result, the officer began to follow the defendant/motorist at which point the officer observed defendant activate his right turn signal but would pass several streets without turning right. Moreover, the officer indicated defendant began to drift over the solid white line onto the shoulder of the roadway. At that point, the officer activated his overhead lights and pulled the defendant over. Once pulled over the officer approached the defendant/motorist and smelt alcohol emanating from the vehicle. Officer began to question defendant at which time defendant admitted to drinking alcohol in a slurred manner and exhibited red watery eyes. Officer requested defendant to step-out of vehicle and perform various field sobriety tests, such as HGN, one leg stand, walk & turn. Officer opined defendant failed all filed sobriety tests. The defendant was arrested and transported to police headquarters. At police headquarters, defendant submitted to two breath test utilizing the Alcotest BAC tester which indicated a BAC level of .12%.

After successful litigation, DWI attorney Dan Matrafajlo was able to suppress the .12% B.A.C reading resulting in the defendant losing his driving privileges in the State of New Jersey for a period of 3 months. All the other summons issued were dismissed as part of the plea.

 


 

State v. J.D. (resolution date 6/18/2014)

Defendant was charged with N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 (DWI) N.J.S.A. 39:4-97 (careless driving), N.J.S.A. 39:4-96 (Reckless Driving).

According to the police officers narrative of events, defendant/motorist was traveling north in the south bound lane of travel on a major highway. The officer immediately to prevent a serious collision intercepted the defendant/motorist by directing the defendant to immediately pull over into the shoulder lane. Defendant had trouble pulling his vehicle over but eventually was able to pull his car into the shoulder lane. Once pulled over, defendant seemed disoriented with blood shot eyes. The officer had questioned the defendant on where he was coming from but defendant replied with “i can’t recall.” Defendant further admitted to officer he was “drunk” and probably unable to drive. Defendant was arrested and transported to police headquarter for breath testing. At headquarters, defendant submitted to breath testing that resulted in a BAC level of .16%

After successful litigation, Dan Matrafajlo was able to suppress the .12% B.A.C reading resulting in the defendant pleading guilty to a 1st tier DWI under N.J.S.A 39:4-50, thus losing his privileges to drive in the State of New Jersey for a period of 3 months. All the other summons issued to the Defendant/motorist were dismissed as part of the plea agreement.

 


 

State v. J.C. (resolution date 3/19/2014)

Defendant was charged with N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 (DWI) N.J.S.A. 39:4-50.2 (Refusal to Submit to Breath Test), N.J.S.A. 39:3-66 (failure to maintain lamp), N.J.S.A. 39:3-40 (driving on suspended), N.J.S.A 2c: 29-2A(1) (preventing an officer from effectuating a lawful arrest).

According to the police officers narrative of events, two officers where patrolling the city area in marked unit 15B when they observed a silver color SUV traveling west with NO headlights. The officer signaled the driver to turn on lights but the mail driver refused by giving the officer’s a profane gesture with his middle finger. In response, officers switched their emergency lights and attempted to pull defendant/motorist over to effectuate a motor vehicle stop. At which time, the defendant/motorist reluctantly pulled over. As the officers approached defendant/motorist’s vehicle, the defendant started screaming profanities towards officers and refused to exit vehicle. Officers attempted to remove defendant from vehicle when defendant became irate by kicking and screaming. Finally, defendant exited vehicle but was unable to stand and/or walk. Defendant fell to the ground. Officers smelt strong odor of alcohol emanating from defendant’s person. At station defendant refused to submit to breath test. In addition, Officers also learned that the defendant had three active bench warrants for his arrest. Defendant was charged with DWI, refusal to submit to breath testing, resisting arrest, failure to maintain lamps. The criminal charge of resisting arrest was downgraded to a municipal ordinance. The refusal to submit to the breathalyzer was dismissed consequently, the defendant did NOT have to lose his driver’s license for the 7 months. Defendant did plea guilty to a first tier DWI resulting in a 3 month driver’s license loss as a result thereof.

 


 

State v. M.S. (resolution date 1/15/2014)

Defendant was charged with (N.J.S.A. 39:4-50, BAC .18%) BAC reading was suppressed and defendant pled guilty to an observational case resulting in a 3 month loss of New Jersey driver’s privileges, careless driving (NJSA 39:4-97) dismissed, possession of a controlled dangerous substance (CDS) (NJSA 2c:35-10(a) conditional discharged pursuant to title 36, possession of a CDS in a motor vehicle (NJSA 39:4-49.1) dismissed.

Defendant was stopped by police for driving the wrong way on a one way street. The investigating officer smelt alcohol emanating from the defendant’s vehicle, defendant speaking in a slurred manner and blood shot eyes. As a result, defendant was requested to step-out of the vehicle and perform various field sobriety tests (FST), such as: one leg stand, walk and turn and heel to toe tests. According to officer, defendant failed all FST tests, consequently defendant, motorist, was arrested and charged with DWI, including other traffic violations set forth above. During defendant’s arrest, the officer discovered marijuana (CDS). After three months of litigation, the BAC reading of .018% was suppressed. In response, defendant pled guilty to first tier DWI- resulting in a three month driver’s license suspension.

 


 

State v. C.H. (resolution date 10/22/2013)

Defendant was charged with DWI (NJSA 39:4-50) and Careless Driving (NJSA 39:4-97). On August 9, 2013 local police observed a silver pick-up truck traveling east in the right lane of travel on Rt. 22. The officer opined that the vehicle observed had difficulty maintaining lane by swerving in and out of the lane and was driving faster than the posted speed limit, specifically by driving 70 m.p.h. in a 55 m.p.h. zone. The officer approached the driver from the passenger side of at which point the officer smelled alcohol emanating from the car. The officer further observed that the driver’s eyes were glossy and watery and the driver was fumbling his paperwork in an effort to provide the officer his license and registration. The officer then began to question the driver as to the smell of alcohol whereby the driver responded that he had two (2) drinks of cranberry Absolute vodka within a ten (10) minute period of time. At that point the officer requested that the driver step out of the vehicle and perform various field sobriety tests. The officer administered the HGN test- which the officer opined that the driver failed. Secondly, the officer requested the driver to perform the walk and turn test- which the officer opined the driver failed. Lastly, the officer requested the to perform the one leg stand test, which once again the driver, according to the officer- failed. At that point the officer placed the driver under arrest and transported the driver to the New Jersey located police station where the driver submitted to a breath test that resulted in a reported breath test result of .14% BAC. The driver was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol in the State of New Jersey in violation of N.J.S.A. 39:4-50 and carelessly operating his vehicle in violation of N.J.S.A. 39:4-97. On October 22, 2013 the .14% breath test result was suppressed and the driver pled guilty to a lower tiered DWI violation resulting in a three (3) month loss of driving privileges the remaining careless driving ticket was dismissed as part of the plea.

 


 

State v. A. J. (resolution date 03/08/2013)
Defendant charged with DWI (N.J.S.A 39:4-50), careless driving (N.J.S.A 39:4-97). On May 28, 2013 the Court dismissed the DWI charge without court costs and the defendant/motorist plead guilty to unsafe driving (N.J.S.A. 39:4-97.2). As a result, the Court imposed fines and court costs in the total amount of $489.00.

 


 

State v. D.F. (06/05/2013)
Defendant charged with DWI (N.J.S.A 39:4-50) and unsafe lane change (N.J.S.A 39:4-88B), failure to keep right (N.J.S.A 39:4-82) and maintenance of lamps (N.J.S.A 39:3-66). The defendant submitted to the Alcotest breathalyzer that resulted in a BAC level of .15% The defendant hired an expert to refute the reading but the expert indicated he was unable to find any errors in defendants processing and/or in the administration of the Alcotest and/or in the substantiating documents on the particular Alcotest device. Notwithstanding, I was able to have the breath test result of .15% suppressed saving the defendant from additional license suspension, added fines, and preventing the mandatory installation of the interlock device.

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