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State v. Mangan

November 25, 2009

STATE OF NEW JERSEY, PLAINTIFF-RESPONDENT,
v.
BRIAN MANGAN, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



On appeal from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Morris County, Municipal Appeal No. 07-097.

Per curiam.

NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION

Submitted November 9, 2009

Before Judges Lisa and Alvarez.

Defendant, Brian Mangan, appeals from his convictions after a trial de novo in the Law Division, see R. 3:23-8(a), of (1) driving while intoxicated (DWI), N.J.S.A. 39:4-50(a), (2) possession of under fifty grams of marijuana, N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10a(4), and (3) possession of a controlled dangerous substance (marijuana) while operating a motor vehicle, N.J.S.A. 39:4-49.1.

Because this was defendant's third DWI conviction, he was sentenced to a fine of $1005, $33 court costs, $50 VCCA, $200 DWI surcharge, $75 SNSF, a ten-year driver's license suspension, 180 days in the county jail, and the requirement to install an ignition interlock device upon restoration of his driving privileges. After merging the conviction for violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10a(4) with the conviction for N.J.S.A. 39:4-49.1, defendant was sentenced for the latter offense to a fine of $105, $33 in court costs, and a two-year driver's license suspension, consecutive to that imposed on the DWI.

On appeal to this court, defendant argues:

POINT I

THE STATE DID NOT PROVE, BEYOND A REASONABLE DOUBT, THAT MANGAN WAS UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF ALCOHOL. THE RESULT BELOW WAS NOT REASONABLY REACHED.

POINT II

THE LABORATORY CERTIFICATE SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN ADMITTED WITHOUT THE TESTIMONY OF THE LABORATORY TECHNICIAN, BECAUSE THE DEFENSE LODGED A PROPER AND TIMELY OBJECTION PURSUANT TO N.J.S. 2C:35-19(C).

We reject these arguments and affirm.

Just past midnight on May 3, 2007, Patrolman Thomas Gorman of the Denville Township Police Department was on patrol in a marked police vehicle. He observed defendant make a left turn onto Route 46 at a speed of about thirty-five miles per hour, which Gorman characterized as "pretty fast for a turn . . . so much so that he came within inches of hitting the curb, that was part of the . . . lane going towards Route 80." Gorman followed defendant, who was then traveling in the right lane of Route 80, which at that point is a four-lane highway. He observed defendant's vehicle "weaving in and out of the right lane, into the emergency lane, back, the entire stretch of the way." When defendant exited the highway, "he was hugging the guardrail so closely that he was within an inch, maybe inch and a half of taking off his entire side panel, and followed that guardrail all the way down to Green Pond Road."

At that point, Gorman determined that defendant was driving unsafely and erratically. He activated his overhead lights to initiate a stop. However, although defendant slowed down, he continued driving for about another half mile, ...


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