Drunk Driving in Massachusetts

Bud LitePeople have a responsibility to drive in a safe manner. As accidents can lead to the loss of life, it is important that drivers do not take this obligation lightly. A major impediment to safe driving is the consumption of alcohol, and it is a major reason why states attempt to reduce drunk driving.

A recent post from NECN.com describes a situation in which a Massachusetts state trooper did not conduct himself in a responisbile manner. A Chelmsford, Massachusetts woman described her horror when she says that a black Ford Explorer rammed through the intersection. Prosecutors assert that the state trooper, Sergeant Sean Gately, was off-duty and driving drunk in Chelmsford’s Central Square. He allegedly continued to drive through a red light and totaled the woman’s vehicle, leaving her with injuries to her neck and shoulder. The police officer is currently on probation without pay. The person who called 911 stated that the guy was quite drunk and arriving officers reported an odor of alcohol as the trooper spoke. Sergeant Gately had a reading of .25 blood alcohol content, three times the Massachusetts limit of .08.

Unfortunately, this is not Sergeant Gately’s first encounter with the law. He has previously faced charges for speeding and reckless driving and has been in five surchargeable accidents. As an officer, he should be well-versed in the importance of following the law, but he has constantly demonstrated questionable judgment. Witnesses have stated that the state trooper drove into incorrect lanes, causing him to crash into oncoming vehicles. Even more concerning is that witnesses have also mentioned that he would leave the scene of an accident before the police arrived. Despite these alleged actions, the officer has never had a serious legal problem. The lady who suffered injuries mentioned her fear and frustration over the officer’s activities. She hopes that the officer is not permitted to continue driving, as the officer has shown that his actions endanger the lives of others.

Submitting to a Blood or Breath Test

While Sergeant Gately has not been previously punished for his questionable behavior, it is important to understand that drunk driving could mean serious problems. Chapter 90, Section 24 of the Massachusetts General Laws deals with issues relating to driving under the influence. Paragraph (f)(1) establishes that whoever drives upon any way or in any place that the public may access is held to have consented to submit to a chemical analysis of the person’s breath or blood if he is arrested for operating a vehicle under the influence of intoxicating liquor. However, if a person refuses to submit to the test, the officer is supposed to inform the driver that his or her license or right to operate motor vehicles in Massachusetts will be suspended for at least 180 days. The driver will then no longer be subjected to a test, but will have their license suspended.

If you have questions regarding car accidents, or need help recovering compensation, contact the Sheehan Law Firm. We understand how traumatizing a wreck can be, and will do everything in our power to secure you the payment that you deserve.

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