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Child Endangerment Charges can Carry Across State Lines, New Jersey DUI Attorneys Warn

January 11, 2013 | Posted In Criminal Law, Drunk Driving - DUI/DWI

A woman from Asbury, New Jersey, is facing criminal charges after driving under the influence and failing to restrain her 5-year-old daughter in a car seat. Kimberly Joy Stricker, 40, drove off a road in Monroe County, Pennsylvania, crashing into a ditch and an embankment after she lost control of her car. The car flipped over and hit a tree 30 feet from the roadside. New Jersey drunk driving attorneys say that although Stricker and her young passenger were able to escape the vehicle by themselves, Stricker will face criminal charges for the crash and for the dangerous situation in which she placed her passenger.  A parent charged with child endangerment faces up to 5 to 10 years in prison if convicted.

The police who arrived on the scene determined that Stricker showed signs of impairment, and made her undergo chemical testing before transporting her and the child to a nearby hospital. Stricker was charged at the scene with driving under the influence, endangering the welfare of a child, careless driving and restraining systems, and driving on roadways laned for traffic.

Pennsylvania law requires that children under the age of eight are restrained with a booster or car seat in a car, and Stricker was in violation of that law. In New Jersey, booster seat laws are similar—a child must ride in a car seat until he or she is 8 or weighs 80 pounds—and Stricker may face criminal endangerment charges for her out-of-state crimes. The maximum fine for violating child car seat laws is $100, but DUI crimes in New Jersey are escalated when a child is involved in the accident.

Legislation in New Jersey has recently been adapted to protect children in drunk driving incidents. If a DUI results in an injury or death of a minor passenger, a DUI charge will be escalated to include criminal felony penalties. If you are facing a DUI charge or child endangerment charges, New Jersey drunk driving attorneys can help you wade through the court dates and fines you may be facing. Contact the New Jersey DUI attorneys at Helmer, Conley, and Kasselman for a free legal consultation.

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