Bird Scooters and North Carolina DWI Law

bird scootersThe answer is yes. A person can be charged with driving while impaired on a Bird Scooter.

If you’ve been in downtown Raleigh at all in the last few weeks you have surely seen people jetting around on Bird Scooters. These new electric “vehicles” have exploded in popularity and usage here in a very short amount of time. I’ve seen business people conduct meetings on them; I see folks taking them to and from lunch; I’ve even seen some district attorneys use them to hurry back to the courthouse. There is no doubt that these scooters serve some purpose in downtown Raleigh, but prospective riders need to know how the law treats them if the driver has had too much to drink. Continue reading “Bird Scooters and North Carolina DWI Law”

Boating While Impaired in Wake County

As summer approaches, one of the outdoor activities enjoyed most by Wake County citizens is boating. Whether on Lake Jordan, Lake Wheeler, Falls Lake, or one of our area’s other smaller lakes or rivers, boating is usually accompanied by drinking alcoholic beverages. It is important to remember that combining these two activities could possibly lead to a serious criminal charge: Boating While Impaired (BWI).

Boating While Impaired Continue reading “Boating While Impaired in Wake County”

Raleigh Police’s New DWI/DUI Aid and Abet Policy

A person can be charged with aiding and abetting an impaired driver when she knowingly advises, instigates, encourages, or aids another person to drive while under the influence and her actions cause or contribute to the commission of that crime. The punishment for this misdemeanor offense is the same as being convicted of DWI/DUI. That is a bitter pill to swallow considering the person charged was never driving.

In Wake County, we generally only see this charge when a person has let someone else drive their car and the driver is eventually arrested for DWI/DUI. It seems that ownership of the car had a lot to do with whether a passenger would be charged with this serious misdemeanor.

The District Attorney’s Office almost never prosecutes a person for aid and abet DWI/DUI. In fact, I have seen and personally handled hundreds of these charges and have not once seen anyone prosecuted. Generally, the case is kept on the calendar until the person charged with DWI/DUI resolves their case, then the aid and abet charge is dismissed.

Regardless of the District Attorney’s general position in these cases, the Raleigh Police Department has created a new policy on how they charge this crime. Starting this year, ANY passenger in a car stopped for suspicion of DWI/DUI will be charged with aiding and abetting if the driver is eventually charged with DWI/DUI. It doesn’t matter whose car it is or how many passengers there are. I have already seen cases where three passengers have all been charged with this same offense.

This new policy brings up concerns. How can the state prove that all passengers knew the driver was impaired? What actions from a passenger contribute to the driver committing DWI/DUI? Even with this new charging policy from the Raleigh Police Department, I believe the District Attorney will still handle these charges in the same way as they always have.

Saad Interviewed About Facebook Video of Baby Inhaling Marijauna

A Raleigh mother has been arrested after she posted a video of her baby inhaling marijuana on Facebook. Steven Saad appeared on the 10:00 news last night on ABC-11 discussing the charges against Brianna Ashanti Lofton including 2 counts of felony abuse, contributing to the delinquency and possession of marijuana. In the interview, Saad also explains what you should do if you witness a crime on social media. Click here to read the full article. 
Brianna Ashanti Lofton- Raleigh Baby Smoking Marijuana in FB Video

Edible Marijauna and North Carolina Law

2018 ushered in new marijuana laws including laws that pertained to edible marijuana. In a number of states including California, these new laws include outright legalization. These changes don’t mean much to North Carolinian’s, and its hard to see even medical marijuana getting the nod here anytime soon (although non-psychoactive CBD oil was made legal for epilepsy patients by Governor McCrory). What has changed in our state is the number of marijuana edibles cases we’ve seen in the courts. It’s reasonable to think that this increase has a correlation to legalization around the country, and I expect that we will continue to see an uptick in edible cases in the next few years. Continue reading “Edible Marijauna and North Carolina Law”