The penalties for a driving while intoxicated (DWI) conviction are very serious, and they become increasingly severe for second and subsequent convictions. The severity of the penalties for a DWI conviction also depends upon the facts and circumstances surrounding the incident. For example, if you cause a motor vehicle accident or bodily harm to another person in the course of a DWI, the penalties are more serious than if a police officer simply pulled you over for DUI. Likewise, a higher blood alcohol content/concentration (BAC) during a DWI can result in a more severe punishment.
For a first DWI offense with a BAC of less than .15, which is a Class B Misdemeanor, you can receive the following penalties:
· A fine of up to $2,000
· A jail sentence ranging from three to 180 days
· Driver’s license suspension ranging from 90 to 265 days
If your BAC is .15 or greater, the offense becomes a Class A Misdemeanor, for which you can receive a fine of up to $4,000 and a jail sentence of up to one year. Similarly, a second DWI offense is a Class A Misdemeanor with the same penalties, but also with a driver’s license suspension ranging from 180 days to two years.
For a third DWI offense, you can face 3rd Degree Felony charges; a conviction can result in the following penalties:
· A fine of up to $10,000
· Two to 10 years imprisonment
· Driver’s license suspension ranging from 180 to two years
Various other factors can affect the penalties for a DWI conviction. For instance, if you have an open alcohol container at the time of your DWI, your minimum jail sentence increases to six days. If you are convicted of DWI that is the proximate cause of an accident with serious bodily injury, you could be incarcerated for two to 10 years, your minimum jail sentence will be at least 30 days, and you could be ordered to pay a fine of up to $10,000.
At Peek & Toland, we are dedicated to protecting your rights and defending you from any potential criminal charges, including DWI and other alcohol-related criminal offenses. We are here to investigate the facts surrounding your case, consider your options, and help you develop the strategy that is best designed to achieve a successful outcome in your case. Do not waste time; contact our office as soon as you become the target of an investigation.