When it comes to laws, the implementing rules and regulations may vary slightly per state, and it is always best to know as much as you can the provisions of the place you reside in. Denver, Colorado, for example, is one whose rules are slightly different from other states. Today, let’s talk about DUI, the basics about the law, its corresponding penalties, and what you can do when flagged down by police for DUI. However, the best way to go when you already have a DUI arrest is to get in touch with Geman criminal defense, the best and most popular DUI attorney in Denver.
When are You Considered Intoxicated?
There are three bases for intoxication in Denver. First is when your mental capacity is not functioning normally due to alcohol or other controlled substances. The second one is not able to use your physical body generally due to the effect of alcohol or other controlled substances. And lastly, you are considered intoxicated if the alcohol concentration in your body is 0.08 or higher. Under state law, alcohol concentration means the number of grams of alcohol per 67 millilitres of urine, 100 millilitres of blood or 210 litres of breath.
What is the Difference Between DWI and DUI?
Driving Under Influence (DUI) in Denver is only for minors, that is to say, anyone under the age of 21 who is operating a motor vehicle in public while having alcohol in his body. There is no set limit for alcohol concentration, as long as your alcohol intake is detectable, then it is considered. On the other hand, Driving with Influence (DWI) is for adults. It involves the introduction of any controlled substances such as drugs in the body or alcohol. These two terms are defined differently in other states.
What Should I Do When Stopped by Police?
In case you are flagged down by police for DWI, it means they have noticed something unusual about the way you drive. Some primary reasons are swerving, weaving, turning with a wide radius, braking erratically, stopping inappropriately, headlights off, accelerating or decelerating too fast and many other more. Police officers were trained to be very observant when searching for drunk drivers on the highways. When they notice any of these signs, the initial reaction is that the driver is drunk. When police stop you, you are not required to answer questions especially ones that are self-incriminating. It is wise to respond politely and request to speak to your lawyer first before answering any questions.
What are the Consequences When Arrested for DUI?
If you had a DUI conviction, your license may be under suspension for 90 days up to 2 years. You also have to note that the DWI arrest will stay on your record forever. There is no way to delete it so better be wise not to get arrested or when arrested, to hire a reasonable attorney to defend you.
The first and second DWI charge is counted as a misdemeanor and therefore, penalized as such. However, it still depends on the severity of the cost. Many factors are being considered when it comes to DWI convictions.
However, for the first offense, if it is essential, you will get convicted for class B misdemeanor. The maximum fine for that is $2000 wherein the maximum jail time is six months. On the other hand, your second offense is still a class B misdemeanor, but it comes with more severe punishment than you first. The maximum prison time for it is one year while the fine is up to $4000.
When we say felony DWI, we are looking into several factors. There are three situations when a DWI charge will get convicted as a felony.
- Third Offense
- Serious Bodily Injury
Let’s take into consideration the first on the list. Getting charged once or twice can still be reasonable, but the third charge is a permanent action that may lead to worse outcomes. Thus, on your third conviction for DWI, it will already get counted as a felony. The penalties will follow. You may receive a maximum of ten years in prison plus a maximum fine of $10,000. It is also possible for your license to get suspended for two years. But in case you want to retain it, you may need to pay up to $10,000 for annual charges.
Causing Serious Bodily Injury
In any case that your drunk driving is proven to cause serious bodily injury to an individual/s, you will get charged for a felony even when it is just your first or second offense. The consequences may vary depending on the Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) in your body during the time of the incident. If it exceeds the maximum allowable which is 0.08 percent, then you are in deep trouble.
If your drunk driving caused the death of an individual, then your charge is counted as a felony. It is called intoxication manslaughter and it is calculated as a second-degree felony and charges as such.