Drunk driving is strictly prohibited in the United States. Each state has its own unique set of penalties that are imposed on those arrested for drunk driving. New York has some of the toughest drunk driving laws in the country. Readers should note that anyone, regardless of social status or government affiliation can be arrested for DUI, which is the case of an NYPD officer who was recently charged with DUI after being involved in a minor accident.

Based on the report, the suspected drunk driver, a 53-year-old NYPD homicide detective and 20-plus year veteran of the force, was involved in an accident last Wednesday. Authorities arrested the detective and took him to the nearest police station. The driver then refused a breath test.

Several other NYPD officers have made headlines lately with similar charges, including a policeman who was arrested last month for DWI. The police commissioner terminated the officer in that incident, perhaps because he shot his partner in the arm while drinking.

A police officer’s duty is to uphold the law, so it’s easy to see how a drunk driving charge can seriously tarnish his or her reputation. Aside from a damaged reputation, the suspected drunk driver may also be subjected to severe fines and penalties if convicted of the offense. In the case above, the driver refused to take a breath test, which could lead to an automatic license suspension or revocation. On the other hand, refusing a breath test can preserve the innocence of the suspected drunk driver since prosecutors can then only rely on other evidence such as dash cam videos and the arresting officer’s report. Here in White Plains, New York, a person accused of DUI or any drunk driving offense may need legal advice to avoid conviction.

Source: NY Daily News, “Cop arrested for drunk driving in Brooklyn refuses to take Breathalyzer test,” Joseph Stepansky and Rocco Parascandola, May 29, 2014