Potential Consequences Of Fleeing A DWI Traffic Stop

September 29, 2022


While high speed car crashes can be exciting to watch on television, running from the police is not advisable and can often land you in a lot more trouble than it’s worth. A man from Queens recently learned this lesson the hard way when he unsuccessfully tried to flee from the police during a DWI (driving while intoxicated) stop.

Police car pulling over suspected drunk driver

A New York Post article notes that the man had stopped his car in the middle of the Queens Midtown Tunnel when an officer approached his car to see if he needed help. While speaking with the driver the officer noted that the man’s speech was slurred and that he smelled of alcohol. While the officer was calling in the code for a DWI on his radio, the driver sped away from the scene in an attempt to escape. Unfortunately for the driver, officers pursued him and were eventually able to arrest him. The man was charged with DWI, reckless endangerment, obstruction of government administration, and failure to take a breath test.

Driving while intoxicated is a fairly well known crime, however, you may not be as familiar with the other crimes that the man was charged with so their main points are briefly outlined below.

Reckless Endangerment: New York Penal Law §§ 120.20 and 120.25

A person is guilty of reckless endangerment if he or she recklessly acts in a way that creates a substantial risk of serious physical injury to another person.

Obstructing Governmental Administration: New York Penal Law § 195.05

A person is guilty of obstructing governmental administration if he or she intentionally obstructs, impairs, or perverts the administration of law or another governmental function.

Failure To Take A Breath Test: New York Vehicle Traffic Law § 1194

If a police officer reasonably believes that a person in their custody is guilty of driving while intoxicated, the officer can administer a chemical test to the driver. Refusing to take the test can result in the driver’s license being suspended or revoked.

Unlawfully Fleeing A Police Officer In A Motor Vehicle

Additionally, if you have been instructed by a police officer to stop your vehicle and you knowingly try to flee, you may be charged with unlawfully fleeing a police officer in a motor vehicle in one of the following degrees:

  • Third degree: If the driver attempts to flee by driving at more than 25 miles per hour above the posted speed limit or engages in reckless driving.
  • Second degree: If the driver attempts to flee in the third degree and as a result someone else is seriously injured.
  • First degree: If the driver attempts to flee in the third degree and as a result someone else is killed.

Instead of fleeing a traffic stop, the best thing you can do is to stay put. If you are arrested for DWI, it isn’t the end of the road, and it’s important to remember that this does not mean you’ll automatically be found guilty. This is where a strong defense comes into play, and why it’s important to hire an experienced DWI lawyer.

Have you or a family member been charged with a DWI in New York? Our experienced team of lawyers can help you obtain the best possible outcome in your case.  Contact our team today to learn your options. We’re available 24/7 at 1-800-394-8326.

DISCLAIMER: The exclusive purpose of this article is educational and it is not intended as either legal advice or a general solution to any specific legal problem.

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