Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI) by Drugs

Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI) by Drugs

FORMER PROSECUTOR with over 20 plus years of experience.  When he was a prosecutor, Luigi was assigned to a specialized bureau in the District Attorney’s Office that exclusively prosecuted Driving While Intoxicated by alcohol and Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI) by Drugs.  This was an elite unit that you had to be asked to join based on merit and was comprised of the most experienced trial lawyers in the District Attorney’s Office.  While in that unit, Luigi SUCCESSFULLY tried several DWI/DWAI by Drug jury trials with a 100% conviction rate and litigated many pretrial suppression hearings on a wide variety of constitutional issues where the suppression of evidence was at stake.

As a result of his accomplishments in that bureau, Luigi was promoted to the Felony Trial Bureau in the District Attorney’s Office where he handled complex Felony DWI/DWAI by Drug cases including those involving serious physical injury and death.  Unlike many lawyers, Luigi has a unique knowledge of the science of DWI/DWAI by Drugs.  He also has extensive knowledge of how the police conduct these investigations including the administration of Standardized Field Sobriety Tests and is intimately familiar with the strategies to attack the government’s case.

Clients should feel confident that while plea bargaining of a case is always the first strategy to resolve a matter, if clients wish to fight their cases by not pleading guilty, Luigi has the ability, experti

Luigi VigliottiReviewsout of 61 reviews
9.9Luigi Vigliotti



With the legalization of recreational marijuana in New York, there has been a significant increase in criminal cases involving driving under the influence of drugs also referred to as driving while ability impaired by drugs.  As a result, local government is putting a lot of money into DWAI drug enforcement which includes training police officers in receiving specialized training to detect and prosecute DWAI by drug cases.  That training includes the (a) DWI Detection and SFST Course, (b) the Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement (ARIDE) course and the (c) Drug Evaluation and Classification (DRE) Program.


  • In NYS, the law does not require any particular chemical or physical test to prove that a person’s ability to operate a motor vehicle was impaired by the use of a drug.
  • To determine whether a motorist’s ability to operate a motor vehicle was impaired, a jury or judge may consider all the surrounding facts and circumstances including: (a) the motorist’s physical condition and appearance, balance and coordination and manner of speech; (b) the presence or absence of an odor of a drug; (c) the manner in which the motorist operated the motor vehicle; (d) opinion testimony regarding the motorist’s being under the influence of a drug; (e) the circumstances of any accident that may have occurred and (e) the results of any test for the presence of drugs in the motorist’s blood
  • In order to prove that you were driving while ability impaired by drugs, an officer must have specialized training in drug recognition and that if the officer does not have that training, the prosecution may not be able to prove your guilt.

In New York State, the penalties for an alcohol or drug-related violation include the loss of driving privileges, fines, and a possible jail term.

Additional penalties

  • greater penalties can also apply for multiple alcohol or drug violations within a 25-year period
  • surcharges are added to alcohol-related misdemeanors ($260) and felonies (generally $400, but varies slightly depending on court of conviction)
  • three or more alcohol or drug-related convictions or refusals within 10 years can result in permanent revocation, with a waiver request permitted after at least 5 years
  • a driver with an Aggravated DWI violation conviction within the prior 10 years will receive a minimum 18-month revocation if convicted of DWI, DWAI/Drugs or DWAI/Combination. Also, a driver with a prior DWI, Aggravated DWI, DWAI/Drugs or DWAI/Combination with the prior 10 years will receive a minimum 18-month revocation
  • a driver convicted of an Aggravated DWI, DWI, DWAI/Drug, DWAI/combination, vehicular assault and aggravated vehicular assault, or vehicular manslaughter and vehicular homicide three or more times in the preceding 15 year period is guilty of a Class D felony.
Luigi VigliottiReviewsout of 61 reviews

Why You Should Choose Us to Help You Defend Your DWI/DWAI by Drug Case

First, we have extensive experience navigating the DWI/DUI minefield.  Luigi has handled thousands of DWI/DWAI by Drug cases as both a prosecutor and as a DWI/DWAI by Drug defense attorney and is a master negotiator.  He can pick apart most DWI/DUI cases by finding mistakes that the police made during their investigation.  Often, these mistakes mean that  a client does not have to go to trial and instead can receive the benefit of a lower charge which carries less penalties including no jail, lower fines, no probation, no need to install an ignition interlock device in a motor vehicle and a sooner reinstatement of one’s full driving privileges.

Second, not every lawyer who handles DWI/DWAI by Drug is an experienced trial lawyer. Any lawyer can walk into court and plead you guilty.  The reason you hire an experienced DWI/DWAI by Drug lawyer is because if plea negotiations break down, you want someone who has intimate knowledge of the science of these types of cases and can successfully go to trial and win.  Trial lawyers are highly specialized in trial advocacy.  Luigi has extensive experience in DWI/DWAI by Drug trials and litigation and has won many of these cases for his clients.

Lastly, we give personalized attention to each of our clients.  Whenever someone is arrested and charged with a crime, it can be psychologically and emotionally devastating.   

Luigi is in constant contact with his clients and explains the legal process to them and is with you EVERY STEP OF THE WAY.  Many clients refer their family and friends to us because they not only received a great result in their case, but also because Luigi made them feel like they mattered.

If you or a loved one is in trouble, call us 24 hours a day.  We are here to fight for you.


The Law Offices of Luigi Vigliotti, P.C., serves clients in courts on Long Island, New York City and upstate New York.

Follow us:

Law Officesof Luigi Vigliotti

1225 Franklin Ave Suite 325 Garden City, NY 11530
143 East Main Street, 2nd Floor, Smithtown, NY 11787



Law Offices of Luigi Vigliotti, P.C., located in Garden City, New York, serves clients throughout Long Island and the surrounding area, including in Nassau County, Suffolk County, Queens County, New York City and Upstate.

© 2022 by Law Offices of Luigi Vigliotti, P.C. All rights reserved. Web Design by Benjamin MarcDisclaimer | Privacy Policy