Drunk driving accidents can always lead to serious legal trouble, but one Needham woman is probably REALLY regretting the decision to drive drunk after she crashed her car into the vehicle of a Massachusetts’ state trooper. The 48-year-old driver was arrested after refusing a breath test at the scene of the accident. This was not the first time she refused a breath test and it was not her first accident.
Our Boston drunk driving accident attorneys know that repeat drunk drivers present a major hazard to themselves and to others. They also face serious penalties that get progressively worse as they repeatedly violate driver safety or drunk driving laws. Repeat offenders will typically lose their licenses for long periods of time, which helps to keep them off the road and to keep others safe.
The Drunk Driving Accident
The Boston Herald reported on the drunk driving incident involving the Needham woman and the state trooper. According to the article, the woman was driving on the northbound side of Route 128 when she rear-ended the state trooper’s cruiser at approximately 10:45 PM. Law enforcement attempted to administer a breath test at the accident scene but she refused.
Her refusal to submit to a breath test (the second refusal in four years) triggered a suspension of her license for at least the next six months. This is because drivers in Massachusetts are assumed to have given implied consent for a blood alcohol test by virtue of driving on the roads in the state. In other words, when law enforcement have reasonable cause to believe someone is intoxicated, that individual must submit to a blood alcohol test. The driver’s failure to submit to a required breath test, coupled with a troubled past record, prompted action to suspend her license at least on a temporary basis.
The alleged drunk driver, however, may be in a lot more trouble than just a six month license suspension. She is pleading not guilty and was released on bail, but will need to return to court on January 9 for a hearing.
At the hearing, evidence of her past driving problems is likely to count against her in criminal sentencing and could exacerbate the fines, jail time and license suspension she faces. Her four-page record goes back as far as 1984 and includes four speeding tickets as well as seven accidents that she was more than 50 percent responsible for causing. She has also had her license suspended twice in the past, making this most recent license suspension her third. The two prior occasions on which she lost her license occurred after a failure to pay citations for moving violations and after an accident she caused in Quincy.
Repeat Offenders are a Serious Danger
As this recent accident shows, repeat offenders who consistently violate drunk driving laws and other driver safety laws are a menace to the public and can cause accidents that injure innocent victims like the Massachusetts’ state trooper. Criminal sanctions and the criminal court system should be used to keep these dangerous drivers from driving and hurting others while the civil court system should be used to make these drunk drivers literally pay for their bad decisions and the damage those decisions caused.
If you or someone in your family has been involved in a drunk driving accident, call the Law Office of Jeffrey S. Glassman, LLC for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your case. Call (617) 777-7777.
Massachusetts Steps Up Drunk Driving Enforcement Over Holidays, Boston Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Blog, December 10, 2012