An arrest for DUI is not a conviction. A common myth is that being arrested for DUI is “getting” a DUI. That is simply not the case. Your case begins promptly after your arrest. A thorough investigation of the case is vital. Just as important as whether you had anything alcoholic to drink are the issues involving mandatory videotaping in compliance with law enforcement standards, proper implied consent warnings prior to submitting to a breath or blood alcohol test, proper breath or blood alcohol test procedure and protocol, proper Miranda warnings, probable cause, and proper field sobriety testing procedures and protocol.
A DUI conviction will result in loss of driving privileges; require expensive and time-consuming alcohol awareness classes and possibly mandated treatment, a three (3) year requirement to maintain costly SR22 insurance, and a criminal record. In addition, the penalties have increased dramatically over time.
Currently, the DUI penalties are as follows:
For a First Offense: $400.00 or 48 hours to 30 days in jail, or 48 hours of community service. If the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is .10 to .15: $500.00 or 72 hours to 30 days in jail, or 72 hours of community service. If the BAC is .16 or greater: $1,000.00 or 30 days to 90 days in jail, or 30 days of community service.
For a Second Offense: $2,100.00 to $5,100.00 and 5 days to 1 year in prison. If the BAC is .10 to .15: $2,100.00 to $5,100.00 and 30 days to 2 years in prison. If the BAC is .16 or greater: $3,500.00 to $6,500.00 and 90 days to 3 years in prison.
For a Third Offense: $3,800.00 to $6,300.00 and 60 days to 3 years in prison. If the BAC is .10 to .15: $5,000.00 to $7,500.00 and 90 days to 4 years in prison. If the BAC is .16 or greater: $7,500.00 to $10,000.00 and 6 months to 5 years in prison.
For a Fourth or Subsequent Offense: 1 year to 5 years in prison. If the BAC is .10 to .15: 2 years to 6 years in prison. If the BAC is .16 or greater: 3 years to 7 years in prison.
Depending on whether you refused to submit to a breath or blood test, or the resulting blood alcohol percentage if you submit to the test, your driving privileges can be immediately suspended upon your arrest. This procedure is separate and apart from whether you are ultimately convicted of DUI. Such a suspension will require expensive and time-consuming alcohol awareness classes and possibly mandated treatment. However, if you act within specified time limits, you are entitled to receive a temporary license with no restrictions and a hearing.
Minor In Possession Of Alcohol:
A minor who is charged with possession of alcohol faces hidden dangers in excess of the associated fine and a criminal record. This offense also carries a suspension of the minor’s driving privileges, regardless of whether the offense involved a vehicle. In addition, college scholarships and assistance programs may also be affected. However, an experienced defense attorney can work towards taking advantage of options and defenses available to avoid such a conviction.
Linward C. Edwards II also represents individuals in traffic ticket cases. The accumulation of traffic tickets can lead to increased insurance rates and license suspension.