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Many New Year’s Eve Revelers Now Facing Long Island DWI Charge

New York City hosts one of the best New Year’s Eve celebration in the world, but the aftermath can be difficult for many revelers who end up drinking and driving, and subsequently being arrested with a DWI charge in Long Island.

Not a good way to start the new year. Celebrations on December 31 are designed to create hope for the new year, that it may end up better than the year that has just passed. Being charged with a crime, especially one with such a negative stigma, can be tough to take.
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As most police agencies do around this time of year, New York law enforcement increased patrols around the holidays as well, setting out to remove drunk drivers from the roads.

But simply having a couple drinks and then driving doesn’t mean a person should be arrested or will be convicted. In fact, in many cases, charges are dropped or reduced because of a lack of evidence, so it’s important to fight back against these criminal charges.

The New York Post recently reported that DWI charges were actually down throughout New York City from 2011 compared to 2010. Staten Island had an 18.1 percent increase from year to year, according to New York police statistics. But Queens, which led all boroughs in 2010 with 3,297 arrests, had 2,961 in 2011, a 10.2 percent drop.

Brooklyn’s DWI arrests dropped 19.8 percent, while numbers in Manhattan dropped 16.2 percent and in the Bronx they were down 15.9 percent. Overall, DWI arrests were down 13.4 percent from year-to-year.

The newspaper reports that police agencies made a stronger effort in 2011 to make arrests throughout Staten Island, especially at the toll plaza at the Verrazano Bridge. That accounted for 80 percent of 2011 arrests.

In other news, My Fox New York reports that a Long Island woman was recently arrested and charged with driving drunk with her two young children in the car. The 36-year-old was arrested one recent weekday night in Suffolk County.

Police charged her with two counts of aggravated driving while intoxicated with a child, two counts of endangering the welfare of a child and one count of driving while ability impaired. The first two charges are felonies.

While some people consider a drunken driving charge to be minor, this situation shows that it can quickly escalate to a felony, which can lead to prison time. Even a first time offense can lead to serious penalties, including jail time up to 15 days, driver’s license loss for three months and a fine up to $500.

There are varying degrees of DWI charges in New York and other forms can lead to longer jail time and loss of a driver’s license for up to one year, depending on the circumstances. But every case has a defense and the state has a tall order proving the charges beyond all reasonable doubt.

The Law Offices of Ira S. Newman provides criminal law counsel in New York City, Long Island, Great Neck and throughout the area. Call 516-487-7375 or contact us through the website.

More Blog Entries:

Punishment for DWI in New York Depends Where You Live, Report Shows: July 30, 2011
Additional Resources:

DWI busts spike in SI, drop overall, by Doug Auer and Jessica Simeone, New York Post
Woman Arrested for DWI With Children in Car, by Luke Funk, My Fox New York