When a person is accused of being in an accident while driving under the influence in New Jersey, the stakes may go up in the criminal case. Notably, New Jersey’s DUI statutes are not necessarily confined to allegations of alcohol consumption. A driver on prescription medications may face charges for DUI.
Authorities in Warren County initially charged a Bergen County woman with assault and DUI after she was allegedly involved in a series of mishaps on Route 46 last October. Police claim that the woman rear-ended a car that was caught in traffic shortly after 11:00 in the morning. The car that was struck was pushed forward into another vehicle.
Police say that the Oradell, New Jersey, woman continued on her way, sideswiping two more cars, which caused one of those vehicles to strike another car. In all, six vehicles were involved in the string of alleged accidents. Law enforcement says that at least five people, including the Oradell woman, sought treatment after the series of crashes.
The government recently presented evidence before a grand jury, which returned an indictment against the woman accusing her of being under the influence of drugs at the time of the accidents.
The grand jury found sufficient evidence to support the conclusion that at least one person suffered personal injury, according to The Express-Times. The woman now faces a charge of assault by automobile in the fourth degree.
Police believe that the woman had taken medications that are prescribed to treat nausea, insomnia and pain.
In general, many people manage medical conditions through the use of prescription medication. Some New Jersey residents may be surprised to find out that drugged driving charges may involve allegations that a driver had taken a prescription drug. Similarly, car accidents occur frequently in New Jersey, and not all crashes involve drugs or alcohol.
The consequences of a drugged driving conviction can be harsh. But, criminal defense lawyers know that the state bears the burden of proof, and a person accused of an offense has the right to challenge the state’s case.
Source: The Express-Times, “Driver charged with injuring woman in intoxicated Hackettstown wreck,” Matthew Bultman, June 9, 2014