Asleep at the Wheel DWI
One of the surprisingly common DWI cases that we see are those in which
the driver is found to be sleeping or passed out in the driver’s
seat of their car. Often, but not always, the driver is alone inside the
car. We’ve had cases where the sleeping driver is parked outside
their home, passed out in the middle of a busy intersection, or passed
out outside a bar or nightclub. When the NYPD approaches the sleeping
driver, they will generally try to wake them up such as by knocking on
the driver side window. When the driver wakes up the police will attempt
to communicate and ask basic questions such as for the driver’s
name, where they are going and coming from. The police may ask if the
driver has consumed any alcohol, drugs, or medications. Depending on the
driver’s responses and whether any alcohol is smelled coming from
the car, the police may detain the driver for further investigation.
A DWI case that starts with the driver being asleep at the wheel is, for
the most part, the same as any other DWI case in that the possible charges
and penalties are the same. The main difference is that there will be
questions and issues about why you were asleep and/or stopped at the place
where you were found.
Our Experience with Asleep at the Wheel DWIs.
Over the years, Lance Fletcher has defended numerous clients arrested for
DWI after they were found to be sleeping at the wheel. One client was
found asleep at the wheel outside of a nightclub with an open container
of alcohol inside. Lance Fletcher fought this client’s case to trial
and won on a technicality. Trials are rare and most of the time, your
case will be resolved at one of the many court appearances that happen
after the day of your arrest. In another memorable case, Lance Fletcher
successfully argued that his client was suffering from a sleep disorder
that caused his client to pass out at the wheel. In another case, he successfully
argued that his client was merely trying to sleep, not drive which allowed
us to resolve it by getting it reduced to a traffic infraction.
Lance Fletcher, a former Manhattan prosecutor, will fight to get your case
dismissed or the charges reduced on the grounds of any illegal procedure
used by the NYPD. He will demand to see the evidence that the NYPD collected
to support the arrest. From there, Lance Fletcher will fight the DWI charges
on any and all available grounds ranging from poor police work to prosecutorial
error. If your charges cannot be dismissed, we are prepared to fight for
an outcome that avoids some of the many severe and burdensome penalties
typical of even a first arrest for DWI.
Contact us today for a DWI case evaluation.