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What Happens After the Arrest?

Last updated on: February 16, 2024

By Lebedin Kofman LLP

When someone is arrested, a cascade of events is set in motion, each with significant legal implications. Understanding what comes next is crucial for anyone facing the daunting uncertainty of the criminal justice process. From the initial booking to potential charges, arraignment, and the possibility of bail, each step carries weight and consequences. 

Navigating the aftermath of an arrest alone can be overwhelming, and decisions made in these early stages can have a lasting impact on the outcome of a case. If you or a loved one has been arrested in New York, don’t hesitate to reach out for legal support. At Lebedin Kofman LLP, our team of New York criminal defense lawyers may be able to help protect your rights and strategize the best path forward for your defense. Our experienced Manhattan DWI lawyers are ready to provide the guidance and representation you need during this challenging time. Contact us today at (646) 663-4430 to schedule your consultation and take the first step towards safeguarding your future. 

What Happens When You Are Pulled Over by the Police

Everything in the DWI timeline would be very important from the perspective of the attorney. The police would have to follow specific procedures. Non-adherence to these protocols can cause any gathered evidence to be inadmissible and/or make the legality of the arrest questionable in court.

Stages of a DWI Case

If you’re facing a DWI charge in New York, knowing the legal journey ahead is crucial for preparing your defense. A DWI case unfolds through several stages, each with its own set of legal intricacies. Let’s break down these stages to shed light on the path a typical DWI case in New York takes.

Traffic Stop and Probable Cause

The initial phase of a DWI case in New York commences with a traffic stop. An officer must possess probable cause, such as erratic driving, to justify the stop. During the interaction, the officer will request identification and observe the driver’s behavior for impairment signs. Notably, People v. Sims (2022) highlighted the necessity of probable cause, where the appellate court upheld that erratic driving provided reasonable suspicion for a stop.

Field Sobriety Test and Breathalyzer

Suspicion of intoxication leads to a field sobriety test, consisting of tasks assessing the driver’s physical and cognitive state. Failure may result in a breathalyzer test to measure BAC, with a 0.08% threshold for legality in New York. However, breathalyzer results can be contested for accuracy, and an adept New York DWI attorney can challenge their admissibility, potentially dismissing or reducing charges.


If a driver fails the necessary sobriety assessments, an arrest for DWI follows. The booking process entails fingerprinting, photographing, and data entry. Drivers may also undergo a chemical test. However, should they refuse, they can be subject to penalties such as license suspension under New York’s implied consent law.


The next step is arraignment, where the accused faces formal DWI charges and enters a plea. A guilty plea may lead to immediate sentencing, while not guilty prolongs the process of trial.


A guilty verdict brings forth sentencing, influenced by factors such as BAC levels, prior offenses, and other relevant details. New York’s DWI penalties range from fines and license suspension to possible incarceration, emphasizing the gravity of securing experienced legal counsel to navigate the complexities of DWI litigation.

Stages of a DWI Case Description
Traffic Stop and Probable Cause Initial stop based on probable cause for erratic driving, officer checks for impairment signs.
Field Sobriety Test and Breathalyzer Suspicion of intoxication leads to tests measuring physical and cognitive abilities and BAC.
Arrest If tests fail, driver is arrested, booked with fingerprinting, photos, and may undergo chemical test.
Arraignment Accused faces formal charges and enters a plea (guilty or not guilty) at this stage.
Sentencing Guilty verdict leads to sentencing considering BAC, prior offenses, and relevant factors.

Hiring an Attorney Can Significantly Affect the Outcome of Your Case

We recently handled a case involving a client with a CDL who came in with his fourth DWI arrest in Kings County, Brooklyn. He was accused of slamming into the back of a New York City off-duty police officer’s vehicle, and then slamming into three parked cars as he drove away.

He was charged with misdemeanor DWI charges, leaving the scene of an accident, reckless driving, and a litany of other charges. It looked like a harsher case because his reading was a 0.17, so he was over double the legal limit, especially with potentially injuring a New York City police officer.

While handling the case, we noticed a small detail. We saw that the prosecutor had served a certificate of readiness on the legal aid attorney as opposed to our law firm after we had entered a notice of appearance. We looked into it further and filed a motion for dismissal.

We argued the case and were able to get all of that gentleman’s misdemeanor counts dismissed on motion, so he ended up getting a violation just like a first offender after he was arrested and convicted of three prior DWI cases. He could not believe what our DWI lawyers were able to do for him.

This is just one of the reasons why it is so important to look through every piece of paper in the file and for us to really know the law very well.

Call our DWI lawyers today at (646) 663-4430 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.

Criminal DefenseDUI/DWI

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