A former county prosecutor and head of the Violent Crimes Unit at the U.S. Attorney’s Office pleaded guilty in March to refusing to submit to a breath alcohol test after he was stopped on suspicion of drunk driving last December. The court suspended Luis A. Valentin’s driver’s license for seven months and fined him $306, while dismissing additional charges against him, including careless driving, reckless driving, and failing to maintain his lane.
Valentin was appointed county prosecutor in 2005 by Gov. Richard Codey, and was the first Hispanic county prosecutor in New Jersey. Previously, he worked with current governor Chris Christie in the U.S. Attorney’s office. Christie declined to re-appoint Valentin in 2010 when his first five-year term expired.
It’s tempting to think that in a case like this, following in the footsteps of a former prosecutor and refusing to submit to a breath test is the best way to handle a DWI stop, but you should know that Refusal charges carry their own significant penalties, and refusing to supply a sample doesn’t mean you can’t be prosecuted for DWI. Witness testimony from police and other evidence can be used even if you refuse.
Whatever your situation, a DWI charge can have long-lasting consequences for you. If you’ve been arrested for DWI, work with the lawyer who’s helped more than 1,040 New Jersey drivers avoid conviction on DWI charges. Call Matthew Reisig today at 732-625-9660 and talk to an experienced New Jersey DWI defense attorney for free.