Source : drunkdrivingchargeslawyerforsythcountync.com
By : JOhn E. Fitzgerald
Category : Attorney General
Posted By : Attorney Matthews Bark
The law of North Carolina prohibits open containers of alcohol in the passenger area of a vehicle on the highway. The passenger area is defined as the driver and passenger seats and any space within the reach of the driver or passenger. The definition does not include the trunk of a car or the area behind the last row of seats or the bed of a truck. However, it does include the glove compartment. An open container means one that has had the seal broken.
An 84-year-old man is facing several charges, including having an open container, DWI and felony serious injury with motor vehicle, after he was involved in an accident. The elderly man was driving a van on Highway 17 in Pender County. According to police, the man attempted to make a turn but drove through the median and hit a motorcycle that was stopped at a red light.
Police claim that the man continued driving after the collision, which dragged the motorcycle rider some 100 feet. The van finally came to a stop when it rear-ended another car and pinned the motorcyclist between the cars. The rider was transported to the hospital with serious injuries. He is listed in fair condition.
If a person is charged with violating the open container law only and is not facing any additional criminal charges, then the violation is classified as a Class 3 misdemeanor for the first offense. The penalty for a Class 3 misdemeanor is a fine of up to $200. A second or subsequent violation is a Class 2 misdemeanor, which is punishable by a fine of up to $1,000.