03Jun 2020

New Jersey Recently Reviewed Probable Cause

A recent case in New Jersey went to high courts on the appeal of a DUI 
conviction. The facts of the case center on an individual who made an 
illegal left turn into a parking lot one night. An officer witnessed the 
individual making the illegal left turn and stopped the individual. 
After speaking with the driver, the officer suspected the individual was 
intoxicated and administered HGN (follow the eye) test. The driver 
failed the test and the subsequent field sobriety tests he was given.

The man entered a conditional guilty plea but then appealed. He appealed 
based on the grounds that making an illegal left turn is not grounds for 
probable cause for DUI and that the officer should not have pursued 
further testing based on a notoriously difficult to give and interpret 
HGN test. The upper courts disagreed and the conviction stood. The court 
decided that the totality of facts in a situation determine probably 
cause, and the traffic violation along with odor and apparent 
intoxicated behavior was appropriate for determining probable cause. If 
you live in Burlington, Essex, Colchester, Winooski, Williston, 
Shelburne or anywhere in the state of Vermont, and have been arrested or 
charged with DUI or any crime, call Handy Law for aggressive and 
experienced legal defense.