Earlier this week, it was reported that a New York City man was arrested for allegedly driving drunk with an infant in his car. He is facing very serious criminal charges for the offense. There are only two situations in New York in which prosecutors have the ability to charge you with an aggravated DWI, and this is one of them.
You can face an aggravated DWI charge, a felony, if your blood-alcohol content is measured at .18 percent or higher when you are stopped or if your BAC is .08 percent or higher and a child under 16 is in your vehicle. Aggravated DWI charges are likely to result in a permanent criminal record; a conviction can lead to expensive fines, the loss of your driver’s license and time in jail.
In the case that took place Sunday on Long Island, the 31-year-old NYC man was apparently pulled over when police saw him swerving. His 6-month-old daughter and his wife were in the vehicle when he was stopped.
In addition to the aggravated DWI charge, he has been charged with endangering the welfare of a child, two counts of aggravated unlicensed driving, and numerous traffic violations.
The state is likely to be aggressive when prosecuting any drunk driving case that involves children. In fact, a study recently published in the Pediatrics journal found that the majority of children who have been killed in DWI crashes were riding in cars with impaired drivers. This finding may give authorities even more motivation to penalize allegedly drunk drivers who are stopped with children in their vehicles.
Those who face aggravated DWI charges in New York have a lot at stake. Whatever your situation may be, it can be critical to talk to a skilled DWI defense attorney about your options.
Source: ABC 7 News, “Man charged with DWI with infant in car on Long Island,” May 12, 2014
Source: Dallas Morning News, “The peril of children in cars with drunk drivers,” May 14, 2014