Whenever a Camden driver causes an accident and alcohol is suspected, the first thing that law enforcement usually does is issue a test to determine if the driver has had too much to drink. Generally, this involves either a breath test or a blood alcohol content test, which is conducted at the scene of the accident or at the jail if the driver is taken into custody. It is this test which plays a pivotal role in any drunk driving case.
The lack of a sobriety test is at the center of a case involving a New Jersey state trooper who caused a car accident while off-duty. According to the report, the officer, a state detective, has pled not guilty to the charge of assault by auto. However, since the trooper was never given any type of alcohol test, the prosecutor may have no other option except to ask the judge to dismiss the charge.
The evidence for the case is fairly circumstantial. A witness says that the trooper was at a Masonic lodge before the accident and there was alcohol, but did not say that he saw the trooper drinking. Emergency personnel said that they could smell alcohol in the ambulance, but someone can drink without being legally drunk. Hospital blood tests did show that his alcohol content was above the legal limit but the judge ruled that this information could not be used.
This is important information to pay attention to. Camden residents should know that if a sobriety test was never given, or was administered incorrectly, it will be more difficult for prosecutors to prove guilt. This is why it may be important to contact a drunk driving defense attorney as soon as possible in order to protect your rights.
Source: NJ.com, "Indictment against State Police detective involved in car crash could be dismissed," Christopher Baxter, Dec. 28, 2012