Police in New Jersey have reported that a 19-year-old woman has been charged with driving under the influence of alcohol after she was involved in a one-car accident during the early morning hours of Feb. 13. After being taken into custody by Stafford police officers, the woman was released to her sister. The case will be heard in Stafford Municipal Court.

The accident took place at the intersection of East Bay Avenue and Route 9 in Ocean County at approximately 2:12 a.m. According to a police report, the woman lost control of her vehicle and crossed the roadway’s northbound lanes before striking and downing a traffic signal pole. Responding police officers determined that the woman was operating while under the influence, and she was subsequently charged with DWI as well as a number of traffic violations.

In addition to Stafford police officers, the accident scene was attended by personnel from the Stafford Fire Company and the New Jersey Department of Transportation. NJDOT workers replaced the damaged traffic signal pole while first responders controlled traffic flow. The woman and her passenger both escaped the accident without injury.

The consequences of drunk driving can be severe in New Jersey for drivers under the age of 21. The state has a zero tolerance policy for underage drinking and driving, and younger drivers may face DWI charges if their BAC is .01 percent or above. A criminal defense attorney may seek to assist younger individuals in this situation by seeking to have DWI charges reduced or dismissed during discussions with prosecutors. One way could be to point out the young driver’s previous record of good behavior and their genuine feelings of remorse over the incident. It is also possible in some cases to dispute the results of breath or blood tests.

Source: Shore News Network, “19 year old woman charged with DWI in Stafford”, Feb. 13, 2015