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Man drives car into Niagara River, faces DWI charges

A New York man has been accused of DWI after a single-car accident that left his car partially submerged in the Niagara River, according to reports. The accident took place on Dec. 29 at about 5:30 p.m. Only one person was involved in the crash.

According to the Erie County Sheriff's Office, their deputies took a 44-year-old man from Orchard Park into custody after responding to a call about a car in the river near East River Road and Ransom Road. Upon arriving at the scene, they discovered the car about a hundred feet from shore, with the man alleged to have been driving still in the vehicle. The Grand Island Fire Company was already at the location and were attempting to guide the man to shore. They apparently helped the man navigate the 3-foot deep river back to the bank and towed his car in with a boat.

The man was not injured in the accident, but sources say he required treatment for hypothermia. Officials on the scene suspected him of alcohol intoxication, but he would not consent to take a breath test to measure his blood alcohol content. He has been charged with a variety of traffic violations, refusal of a Breathalyzer test and driving while intoxicated. He was taken into custody and remained incarcerated at the time of the most recent reports.

Penalties for drunk driving in New York are often severe, ranging from fines to jail time and onerous provisions such as the installation of ignition interlock systems. A lawyer may be able to assist someone who has been charged with DWI or related crimes as they attempt to prepare an active defense, review the evidence against them and communicate with the prosecution and the court.

Source: WIVB, "Rescue crews fish car out of river, charge man with DWI", Mark Belcher, December 29, 2014

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