State v. T.D.
State v. T.D. (Resolution Date 08/20/2021)
On October 23, 2020, at approximately 11:30 p.m., a police officer observes a black BMW SUV that was traveling at a high rate of speed and failed to maintain his lane of travel. The investigating officer activates his overhead lights and stops the BMW for two violations, specifically for failing to maintain his lane and speeding in violation of N.J.S.A. 39:4-88 and N.J.S.A. 39:4-98. Upon the officer walking over to the driver’s side window, the officer smelled the odor of alcohol and confirmed by the driver that he had been drinking moments before getting into his vehicle. Based on the officer’s visual observations and the smell of alcohol, the officer requested that the driver exit the vehicle to carry out several field sobriety tests. The officer first administered the HGN. The officer opined the driver failed the HGN. The second test was the one-leg-stand test, which the driver one again failed. The third and last test was the heel-to-toe test, which again the driver failed. Given that the driver failed the three standardized field sobriety tests, the motorist was placed under arrest for driving under the influence of alcohol in violation of N.J.S.A. (39:4-50). At the police station the officer requested that the driver submit to breath testing. As a result of the officer’s investigation, the driver was issued several summonses including Driving Under the Influence of alcohol in violation of N.J.S.A. 39:4-50.
On August 20, 2021 the motorist was found not guilty of DWI but was guilty of Reckless Driving in violation of N.J.S.A. 39:4-96.