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STATE v. HENDRICKS — NEW JERSEY MURDER TRIAL — "NOT GUILTY" VERDICT

Mr. Tumelty represented Helena Hendricks, who was charged with first degree murder in Atlantic County Superior Court. The defendant faced a number of additional charges, including armed robbery, conspiracy and possession of a handgun for an unlawful purpose. At the conclusion of a jury trial that lasted three weeks, the defendant was found "not guilty" of all charges.

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New Jersey man arrested for drunk driving after leaving an accident

A New Jersey man was allegedly involved in an accident in Warren, then later arrested after having left the scene. He was charged with drunk driving and various other traffic offenses.

According to police, the man drove his vehicle into a fence at around 11:45 p.m. The 47-year-old individual then allegedly left the scene and travelled toward his town of residence. He was stopped by authorities and taken into custody shortly thereafter. The charges against him include driving while intoxicated, refusal to take a breath test, reckless driving, leaving the scene of an accident and other violations.

Drunk driving charges can have serious consequences in New Jersey, including loss of a driver’s license, fines and fees, an ignition interlock device installed in a vehicle and jail time. This is especially true if other charges are filed, like leaving the scene of an accident or reckless driving, which can be aggravating factors used by prosecutors to request harsher punishment.

There are defenses that can be raised, however, and it is important that anyone facing such charges make the state prove its case. If there are breath test results, they can sometimes be challenged, and though refusal to take a breath test may result in some consequences, it generally means there is less evidence available to police. The court should consider whether the traffic stop was proper in the first place, and whether any evidence found during subsequent searches was obtained in accordance with law.

As New Jersey does not generally grant hardship licenses to those convicted of driving while intoxicated, the consequences of losing a license to one’s professional and personal life can be severe. Therefore, it would behoove anyone in such circumstances to ensure that they are defended to the full extent possible under the law.

Source: nj.com, “Berkeley Heights man charged with drunk driving in hit-and-run accident, Warren Police say,” Walter O’Brien, April 18, 2013

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