Impaired Driving offenses in North Carolina have become stricter over the years. With the increase of money put into the prosecution of these offenses by the State, prosecutors, and law enforcement agencies it is key to have an experienced attorney to handle these types of cases for two reasons: First, it is a citizen charged with Driving while impaired needs to understand all the issues in order to prepare an adequate legal defense in spite of all the political and legal climate; and Second, a citizen charged with driving while impaired needs an attorney capable of counseling a them in aspects of alcoholism and other forms of drug use if a problem is identified. Our office excels in the ability to accomplish both of these goals.
In Johnston County, North Carolina both federal and state money is being used targeting persons charged with driving while impaired. The District Attorneys Office in Johnston County has setup a special court called “DWI Court” and has made it a point of emphasis to convict as many people charged with DWI. Not only has this court been setup but the prosecutor working that court is employed ONLY to try and convict people charged with DWI. This prosecutor gets free training every year in all aspects of DWI to convict you. State and local law enforcement are being trained to provide “expert” testimony to the judge as to whether you are legally too intoxicated to drive. The law not allows officers to testify as expert witnesses if they have taken certain classes as to issues of not only alcohol but all types of drugs that may be found in the blood just based on how the person is behaving. No longer does the state have to put an actual doctor on the stand, now a law enforcement officer is enough. To put it simple if you are CHARGED with a DWI in Johnston County, North Carolina you have two choices either come into court and just plead guilty or be ready for a trial to prove to the judge your innocence. The Office of the District Attorney will not take a dismissal on your case even if you blow under the legal limit of .08! If you are under the age of 21 then North Carolina has a zero tolerance policy for any alcohol in the system which means a blow of a .01 on any test will get you charged with Driving after Consuming Alcohol under the age of 21. This is punished much the same as a DWI for adults. You need an attorney who is trained just like the prosecutors and law enforcement. We have made it a point of emphasis at or office to be trained and ready for a trial and counsel our clients on all areas of the DWI, driving after consuming alcohol and other drugs, and issues relating to alcohol abuse and treatment.
The punishment for DWI in North Carolina varies from case to case and could even differ depending on the judge. You need a lawyer who understands the differences so you are not blindsided simply because you didn’t know. For example: Did you know you could get a DWI in a parking lot? Or while riding a horse or an ATV, four wheeler, or lawnmower? How about the fact that you could get a DWI only being behind the wheel of a stationary car? All of these things are true! The North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles will suspend your drivers license for 12 months if you are convicted of DWI or Driving after Consuming under the age of 21. But in many instances you have a right to a limited driving privilege which will allow you to drive during this 12 month period if you make the petition to the court. We are always prepared to make this petition if you are convicted by the judge or jury. This is the typical yet unfortunate position many people find themselves when being confronted by an officer hunting a drunk driver but there are defenses available to you if you have an attorney trained to do so.