Like other states, North Carolina has a program under which the state's Division of Motor Vehicles can suspend a driver's operating license for repeat traffic infractions, including infractions that are not criminal in nature.
Like all but one of the other states, North Carolina's state law allows officers and prosecutors to charge a Rocky Mount resident with drunk driving automatically if they test for .08 or greater blood alcohol content, assuming the test was properly administered. While not impossible, someone who has under a .08 BAC is less likely to be accused of drunk driving and, thus, less likely to lose his or her license.
Previous posts on this blog have talked about how even non-criminal traffic violations can be serious affairs, especially for motorists who hold a commercial license.
A previous post on this blog talked about how what would for a private motorist probably be just a traffic ticket can be a serious affair for a commercial driver who operates trucks or other vehicles for a living.
Even for someone who does not drive for a living, a traffic ticket can spell hundreds of dollars in additional insurance premiums and can also have other consequences.
Drivers in North Carolina can become understandably confused when there are questions about their rights during a traffic stop and what traffic offenses they can face. If a law enforcement officer makes a stop or is investigating a potential incident of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, it is an easy mistake to make to believe that the driver has the right to refuse to submit to a breath or chemical test. The law, however, says otherwise. Understanding this law and the charges a person might face for refusal is important when planning a defense.
Traffic offenses can vary in the severity of the punishments they lead to, depending on the circumstances. Drivers who are dealing with allegations of traffic offenses and might lose their driving privileges or face other punishments because of them should be aware of the importance of having a strong legal defense to avoid the harshest penalties.