Thousands of New Jersey DWI Convictions Could Be Tainted – Is Yours One of Them?
The New Jersey Division of Criminal Justice has advised court administrators that over 20,000 Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) cases could be subject to challenge. On September 20, 2016, Sergeant Marc Dennis, a former coordinator with the State Police Alcohol Drug Testing Unit was charged with two crimes in relation to his role in to the recalibration of alchotests often referred to as breathalyzers. He has been charged with tampering with public records, a third degree crime and falsifying/tampering with public records, a third degree crime. His conviction could lead to the reversal of thousands of DWI convictions.
Specifically, Sgt. Dennis is accused of falsely certifying that he performed temperature checks when recalibrating the devices. The recalibration is a process that was developed by the State Police to comply with the New Jersey Supreme Court’s ruling in State v. Chun, which prosecutors are required to follow in order to admit the results of a breath test.
The accusations against Sgt. Dennis call into question convictions that were based upon breath test results. Dennis served as a coordinator for over seven (7) years, calibrating instruments in Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean, Somerset and Union Counties. According to the Division of Criminal Justice, 22,667 individuals have been identified who provided breath test samples using the devices that were calibrated by Dennis.
If you have been charged with DWI in New Jersey in the past, there is a possibility those charges were based upon breath samples from a device calibrated by Sgt. Dennis. Your subsequent guilty plea or conviction could be tainted. Having a DWI conviction overturned could have a significant impact on your future. The criminal attorneys at Hoagland, Longo, Moran, Dunst & Doukas, LLP are experienced in the intricacies of DWI law. If you wish to schedule a free initial consultation to discuss your options, do not hesitate to contact Joseph V. Leone, Esq. and William G. McGuinn, Esq. at (732) 545-4717.