NY DWI - Children in the Car - Leandra's Law VTL 1192.2-a(b)

New York DWI attorneys and criminal lawyers know that one of the most serious crimes in the realm of DWI offenses is the DWI crime of driving while intoxicated with children in the vehicle. No prosecutor, no judge and no jury will simply think your actions, if proven, are acceptable. The risk to an innocent child is too great. Codified in VTL 1192.2-a(b) Leandra's Law makes it a crime to operate a motor vehicle when a child less than 16 years old is present in the automobile as well as when other factors exist. Not only can the fine range from as little as $1,000 and up to $5,000, because the Leandra's Law offenses are felonies, you can serve time in state prison.

The following acts of DWI are all part of Leandra's Law:

It is an "E" felony, punishable by up to four years in prison for a first time offender, to drive while intoxicated or impaired by drugs when a child, fifteen years old or younger, is in the vehicle.

It is a "B" felony, punishable by up to twenty-five years in prison for a first time offender, to drive while intoxicated or impaired by drugs when a child, fifteen years old or younger, is in the vehicle and that child dies as a result of your intoxicated driving.

It is a "C" felony, punishable by up to fifteen years in prison for a first time offender, to drive while intoxicated or impaired by drugs when a child, fifteen years old or younger, is in the vehicle and that child sustains a "serious physical injury" as defined by the New York Penal Law.

In addition to the penalties for this crime, if you are a parent, the police or prosecutors are required to report your arrest for drunk driving - DWI or DUI - if your fifteen year old or younger child was in the vehicle. This report is made to the Statewide Central Register of Child Abuse and Maltreatment.

It should be overwhelmingly clear. Not only can driving with or harm a child while operating a motor vehicle in an intoxicated state result in serious felonies, it can devastate your career as well as your name and integrity within your community. While good people make bad mistakes, a Leandra's law violation is a mistake that needs a tremendous amount of mitigation to combat.

Call the New York felony DWI defense attorney and former Manhattan Assistant District Attorneys at (212) 312-7129 or contact us online today.

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