Glenn R. Bruno, Esq.
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Working Hard to Protect Your Rights As a Poughkeepsie criminal defense attorney, I have been serving the people of the Hudson Valley for more than 20 years through diligent, assertive and quality criminal defense. I am prepared to put my experience to work for you.

State police charge Dover golf cart driver with felony DWI

Many people are under the impression that they can only be charged with felony drunk driving if they are operating a larger automobile such as a truck or car. In actuality, driving even a golf cart while under the influence could result in a DWI charge. Recently, New York state police charged a Dover man with two felonies for allegedly driving a golf cart while intoxicated.

The police claim that they observed the man driving erratically in a golf cart on a residential road leading to a nearby mobile home park on Aug. 19. Upon stopping the man and taking a sample of his breath, police got a blood-alcohol reading of 0.14 percent. The man was subsequently charged with felony DWI and felony aggravated unlicensed operation of a vehicle.

There are serious penalties associated with a felony DWI conviction. Depending on the circumstances, a felony conviction can result in years of jail time, plus fines, license suspension or revocation, community service or the installation of an ignition interlock device in the suspect's vehicle.

Although golf carts are smaller and slower than regular cars, they can cause serious property damage and injuries if involved in an accident. This may be why many law enforcement agencies are just as aggressive about charging people who drive golf carts while intoxicated as they are about people who operate regular vehicles while under the influence.

Sometimes this aggressiveness can lead to overcharging, though, particularly if the person has multiple offenses or a prior record. This is why it is important to have legal representation when facing criminal charges. An attorney can ensure the client's rights are protected, explain available options and perhaps uncover mitigating circumstances that result in a reduction or even dismissal of charges.

Source: Poughkeepsie Journal, "Dover man charged with 2 felonies for intoxicated golf cart ride: police," Aug. 23, 2012

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