Let’s assume these facts. A Defendant is charged with a drunken driving offense in New Jersey. The same Defendant had a previous DUI in Pennsylvania several years ago and was allowed to participate in the Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition Program, or “ARD”. Presently, our Defendant is no longer on ARD probation as he completed the ARD program requirements and the matter in Pennsylvania was been dismissed (and expunged in most counties).
Will the present New Jersey DWI charge be treated as a 2nd offense? No, because there is no record of conviction for DUI in Pennsylvania because the Defendant successfully completed his ARD program there. Most NJ municipal prosecutors will treat the new driving while intoxicated matter as a first offense since there was no conviction in Pennsylvania. There is no provision that allows for an ARD resolved DUI in Pennsylvania to be treated as a prior DWI conviction in New Jersey.
Although in Pennsylvania, an ARD resolved DUI is treated as a first offense and would subject a defendant to subsequent offense type conditions and conviction in the Commonwealth on a second DUI charge there.
One of the many problems that can arise, however, is if the Defendant was still on PA ARD type probation when he was charged with a DWI in New Jersey. That would subject the Defendant to a revocation of his PA ARD and further subject the Defendant to first offense DUI treatment in PA, unless the New Jersey DWI matter is the first conviction. Then the PA DUI matter would be treated as a second offense in Pennsylvania.
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