Buffalo DWI charges are not contingent on the fact that you are actually operating a vehicle at the time of suspicion and arrest. In fact, most states allow DWI charges under the blanket of APC (actual physical control) laws. You can be charged, and possibly convicted, with a DWI in Buffalo if it can be proven that you were operating a vehicle at any point during intoxication, or if you were witnessed to be in actual physical control of any vehicle while under the influence of drugs, alcohol, or any other mind-altering substance. This is not the law in every state; some places like California do require volitional movement for a DWI charge to stick. However, no matter where you are, it is always best to err on the side of caution and not attempt to operate any vehicle while under the influence. It is not worth the risk for someone to witness your actions and alert law enforcement, leading to DWI charges.

The definition of APC boils down to your ability to operate control of a vehicle. If impairment is suspected and proven, and you are witnessed to be operating a vehicle or even sitting behind the wheel of a car where it is reasonable to suspect that you may have been operating it while impaired, the potential for legal problems increases. While you should never operate any vehicle while under the influence, especially with a BAC exceeding 0.08%, there are some precautions you can take to ensure that the risk of a DWI charge resulting from APC is reduced.

If you need to pull over to sleep, pull into a private lot, as opposed to the side of the road, to avoid suspicion.

  • Slide into the passenger seat or backseat. Do not remain seated behind the wheel.
  • Turn off the engine and remove the keys from the ignition.

APC cases are determined on a case-by-case and circumstantial basis. Some examples of such charges include a person sleeping in the driver’s seat with the keys in the ignition, someone sitting in the driver’s seat listening to music with the keys in the ignition a person walking to the front door of their home after exiting their vehicle after having been seen drinking that same night, and a person attempting to operate a vehicle because they were seen stumbling to their car and attempting to unlock the vehicle.

Factors Considered in APC Cases

  • Are you awake?
  • Are your headlights turned on?
  • Are the keys in the ignition?
  • Is the car parked on the roadway, or in a more private and legal area?
  • Is the ignition running?
  • Where are you located/what is your position in the vehicle?

Take precautions and avoid the risks of any DWI charges as the result of actual physical control suspicion.

If you are facing DWI charges, whether on APC suspicion or because you were actually driving under the influence, you need the experience of a qualified DWI defense attorney. The Attorneys at Nave DWI Defense Attorneys are here to help you understand the law and how it pertains to your case, and to help you fight the charges against you.

The exclusive purpose of this article is educational and it is not intended as either legal advice or a general solution to any specific legal problem. Corporate offices for Nave DWI Defense Attorneys are located at 432 N. Franklin Street, Suite 80, Syracuse, NY 13204; Telephone No.: 1-866-792-7800. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Attorney Advertising.