Somerset County, NJ- Most parents cannot fathom drinking and driving much less doing it with their kids in the car, but it happens and it happens a little too often. A simple internet search will yield story after story where a parent or has gotten drunk and then decides to make a trip to the store or pick their child up from school. A Bedminster woman is now facing serious charges after she became intoxicated and drove her 10 year-old daughter to the doctor’s office.
The incident took place on July 8th, when workers at a pediatrician’s office called police alerting them that a child was in the care of a “highly intoxicated” woman, the Star Ledger reported.
The staff separated the woman from her daughter, and when police arrived they saw a “disheveled” woman. Police said that 51 year-old Rebecca Gillman was slurring her words, and smelled strongly of alcohol when they arrived at the doctor’s office.
Police charged Gillman with obstructing officers from performing their duties, and driving while intoxicated, according to the Star Ledger. However, it didn’t state whether she was charged with child neglect, a fairly common charge for parents who drive drunk with their children in the vehicles.
An online search will show that in July alone at least 10 parents across the country have been charged with intoxicated driving while their children are in the car, and those are just the cases that make the news. This is a much larger problem than we might think and needs to be addressed. Thankfully, in many of these instances, the children were not harmed, but there have been incident when a drunken parent hurts or kills their child or children because they insisted on driving.
In spite of the numerous campaigns which detail the dangers of drunken driving, people still insist on getting behind the wheel. The alcohol gives them a false sense of security and they think they are perfectly capable of driving safely.
Most people don’t realize how serious a DUI is until they get charged with one. And they certainly don’t think of what’s going to happen to their children if they get charged with intoxicated driving and child neglect. In some cases, a person charged with intoxicated driving with their child they could temporarily lose custody of that child, especially if they are single, they were using drugs at the time of the DUI or have a history of drunk driving. That is the worst case scenario, but it happens and the individuals who find themselves in this predicament will need to retain an accomplished Somerset County DUI attorney.
New Jersey has strict DUI laws and lawmakers recently passed a bill that will make the drunken driving laws even tougher. A first offender can be sentenced to jail, lose their driver’s license or be required to install ignition interlock devices into their vehicles. The penalties for drunk driving will cost your freedom and thousands of dollars. This is not a charge you should try and take on without help contact Chester, New Jersey DUI attorney William Ware to build your defense.