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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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Learn More About Underage DWI Charges


New Jersey has a zero-tolerance policy for underage drunk driving. If your child is still a minor, then they cannot legally purchase, possess, or consume alcohol. Moreover, they cannot get behind the wheel of a car after consuming alcohol. This means that just one beer could lead to charges for Driving While Intoxicated (DWI), with a conviction carrying severe penalties. Beyond that, an underage DWI conviction could have long-term consequences for your son or daughter because they will forever be marked as a drunk driver, which could potentially affect their ability to get into a good college or apply for a high-paying job.

Do not take any chances when it comes to your child’s future. If your kid has been arrested and charged with drunk driving, make sure that they have an experienced traffic and DWI defense attorney on their side throughout the legal process.

“Baby DWIs” in New Jersey

Although NJ prosecutors may refer to underage DWIs as “Baby DWIs,” you should not let the name fool you. When it comes to Baby DWIs, prosecutors are unforgiving and often seek maximum penalties that include driver’s license suspension, community service, and alcohol education classes at an Intoxicated Driver Resource Center (IDRC). That’s because New Jersey has seen a rise in traffic fatalities in recent years, with many of these fatal car accidents involving young motorists.

Additionally, it is extremely easy for a juvenile to be charged with drunk driving. The legal limit for blood alcohol content (BAC) in New Jersey is .08 percent. However, this only applies to adult motorists; a juvenile who registers a BAC above .01 percent can be charged with an underage DWI. This means that just one drink could be enough to push a minor above the legal limit.

You should also know that your son or daughter can still be charged with an adult DWI – which carries extreme punishments that may include jail time – if they register a BAC above .08 percent.


If your child has been cited for Driving While Intoxicated or any other traffic offense in Atlantic County, NJ, you should talk to a qualified traffic defense lawyer immediately. The experienced criminal and traffic defense attorneys at the Law Offices of John W. Tumelty can help your child fight the ticket and keep their license. Contact us anytime to schedule a free initial consultation.

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