DUI on a What?!?

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Recent News stories have brought up the topic of alternatives to cars that have resulted in DUI Arrests. For example:

Man arrested for DUI after stealing golf cart from Rose Bowl

CBS Sports reported that a 19-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of DUI after driving a stolen Rose Bowl golf cart onto a freeway in Pasadena following the Rose Bowl college football game on New Year’s Day

Snowplow operator arrested for drunk driving

The CBC/Radio-Canada reported a snowplow operator lost his license after he ran into a vehicle while cleaning out a parking lot. The report said that on Saturday afternoon around 3:25 p.m., someone called police and reported they saw a bobcat plow driver slam into a vehicle while

Police Arrest Indio Man For DUI After Crashing Bicycle Into Vehicle

CBS News in Los Angeles reported that a 42-year-old man was in custody for operating a bicycle under the influence of alcohol, which caused a traffic collision.

Pedicab driver was driving drunk while wearing a python

The Los Angeles Times reported that pedicab driver with a python wrapped around his neck was arrested in downtown San Diego and accused of drunk driving.

In New Jersey, the DWI law is defined under 39:3-40, which says “a person who operates a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor, narcotic, hallucinogenic or habit-producing drug, or operates a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08% or more by weight of alcohol in the defendant’s blood” is guilty of DWI. The law defines a motor vehicle under 39:1-1 as “every device in, upon or by which a person or property is or may be transported upon a highway, excepting devices moved by human power or used exclusively upon stationary rails or tracks or motorized bicycles.” This very broad definition means that the golf cart on the road would be a guilty of a New Jersey DWI. In New Jersey, a snowplow operator would be using a “motor vehicle,” so this would be a DWI. (Interestingly, the New Jersey law for a snow mobile says that a snow mobile operator can only be charged with a DWI if they were on a public street. Even then, the snow mobile has a different section and only faces a fine.) A bicycle is less clear in New Jersey. In 1982, one case, State v. Tehan, held that a bicycle could be charged with a DWI. In 1985 and 1988, two other cases, State v. Johnson and State v. Machuzak, found that a bicycle was moved by human power so did not qualify as a motor vehicle. New Jersey has no more cases about bicycles and DWIs since 1988.

If you have questions about New Jersey DUI law, please contact the DUI Help Center at the Law Office of Douglas Herring.

For more information and to schedule your free consultation, contact New Jersey Criminal Defense Attorney Douglas Herring at the Law Office of Douglas Herring located at 475 Wall St, Princeton, NJ 08540. The Law Office of Douglas Herring has additional offices located in New Brunswick and Trenton. Mr. Herring can be reached 24/7 at (844) NJ Accused or (844) 652-2287 or (609) 256-4098.

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