A Connecticut woman who initially told police she was distracted by her cellphone has been charged with driving while intoxicated after her involvement in a three-car crash in Port Chester recently.

The chain reaction accident started when the 57-year-old woman rear-ended a Kia that was stopped ahead of her. The driver told police she had taken her eyes off the road momentarily to look at her cell phone, and did not see the stopped Kia. The Kia was then pushed into another vehicle. The driver of the Kia complained of neck and arm injuries and was taken to a nearby hospital. The other people involved apparently were uninjured.

Police say the woman appeared intoxicated and was arrested following the accident. She was later released on $200 bail.

Connecticut Drunk Driving Laws

Under Connecticut's Implied Consent law, a presumption exists that any individual driving a motor vehicle has provided his or her consent for a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) test to be performed, when necessary. In Connecticut, people who operate a motor vehicle are considered "legally intoxicated" when their BAC level is .08 or more. For those who are under the legal drinking age, 21, they are considered impaired when their BAC is .02 or higher.

It is a criminal offense to drive a motor vehicle in Connecticut while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Even if the arresting officers do not obtain evidence of the driver's BAC, the individual may still be prosecuted. Ultimately, the most important issue is whether the driver's ability to operate the motor vehicle was impaired.

Strict Operating Under the Influence laws, stiff penalties and mandatory sentencing are meant to send a clear message to deter drunk drivers.

In addition to the criminal penalties, when someone is injured by a drunk driver, he or she may be able to recover damages for personal injuries sustained in the accident.

Source: Port Chester Patch, "CT Woman Charged with DWI After 3-Car Accident in Port Chester," William Demarest, August 10, 2012.

Our firm handles situations in which individuals sustain injuries due to drunk driving accidents. If you would like to learn more about our practice, please visit our CT DUI injury page.

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