In Buffalo, What Happens If A Driver Arrested For DWI Has A Minor In The Car?

When a Buffalo driver is arrested for drinking and driving with a minor in the vehicle, he or she may face very serious criminal penalties.

If the child is fifteen years of age or younger, a driver who is arrested for driving while intoxicated by alcohol, impaired by the use of a drug, or impaired by a combination of alcohol and a drug or drugs may be charged with Aggravated Driving While Intoxicated per se – With a Child.

This offense is a class E felony, even for someone who has never previously been stopped for drinking and driving.

A driver who has been drinking may also be charged with Endangering the Welfare of a Child.

This offense may be charged based on an allegation that by operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated or impaired, he or she was acting in a manner likely to be injurious to the physical, mental or moral welfare of a child less than seventeen years old.

Endangering the Welfare of a Child is a class A misdemeanor.

While it was more common to see this charge before New York State created the offense of Aggravated Driving While Intoxicated per se – With a Child, it still may be applied under the right circumstances.

If the driver is the parent or guardian of the child in the car, the arrest also will – in almost all cases – be reported to social services, which will initiate a separate investigation into the parent’s or guardian’s actions.

An arrest for drinking and driving with a minor in the car can lead to very serious penalties.

If you need the help of an experienced DWI lawyer, call us at 716-542-5444.

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