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Chesapeake DUI Attorney
A DUI is unlike any other traffic offense. Its penalties go beyond simply breaking the established rules of the road. Driving while intoxicated is a serious crime by itself, even when the driver appears to have complete control of the car.
Furthermore, a DUI’s penalties far outweigh those of other traffic violations. It can result in incarceration, but it can also restrict your life in many other ways. The state can remove your right to drive, and it can even confiscate your property.
If you’ve been accused of a DUI in Chesapeake, you need an attorney who can stand up and fight for your rights. DUI charges are often legitimate, but the police also have broad authority in a DUI arrest, often leading to false accusations.
The Law Offices of Daniel J. Miller is here for you. Our attorneys have years of experience in criminal defense, and we’ve helped many clients overcome their DUI allegations. If you need help, call our team today at (757) 267-4949.
Compounding Charges and Penalties for DUI Arrests
In Virginia, DUI charges and penalties grow more severe with multiple offenses. The state wants alleged offenders to learn from their mistakes and make better decisions, so it becomes more strict when it believes someone is not following the rules.
First DUI Offense in Virginia
First-time DUI offenders can be charged with a Class 1 misdemeanor. This can carry jail sentences of up to 1 year with fines as high as $2,500. The alleged will also be charged a $250 mandatory fine, regardless of whether the court demands more money.
People often disregard misdemeanors as “no big deal.” Doing so is a mistake. These crimes still appear on your record, often with direct references to your charge. Potential employers can see a DUI conviction and make assumptions about your character. If you’ve been arrested for even the most minor of DUI crimes, you should get our firm to help.
Second DUI Offense in Virginia
As the accused acquires more DUI allegations, their penalties increase. The time between offenses is vast, as well. A second offense is comprised of two allegations within 5 years.
If you are convicted twice in that timespan, the crime is still classified as a Class 1 misdemeanor, but the penalties are higher. You will spend a mandatory 20 days in jail and pay a mandatory fine of $1,000.
If your accusation happens within 10 years of your first, that is also considered a second offense. Once again, it will be recorded as a Class 1 misdemeanor. This crime is punished less harshly than a second offense in five years, but it is still more severe than a first offense. A guilty verdict comes with a mandatory 10-day jail sentence and a mandatory $500 fine.
Three or More DUI Offenses in Virginia
Just like a second offense, penalties for a third DUI in the state vary based on the lapse of time.
A third DUI arrest within years 5 years becomes a Class 6 felony, the most minor felony in Virginia. Offenders will face a mandatory 6-month jail sentence, which could be elevated up to 5 years in prison. Convicts will also pay a mandatory $1,000 fine which could go as high as $2,500.
A third DUI arrest within 10 years is also a Class 6 felony with smaller penalties. If convicted, you will spend a minimum of 90 days in jail with the potential of spending up to 5 years in prison. Fines are the same as those of a 5-year arrest: $1,000 minimum fine that could go up to $2,500.
DUI Manslaughter Allegations in Virginia
If an alleged DUI ends in someone’s death, the penalties are quite severe. It becomes a manslaughter charge.
In Virginia, manslaughter is already a serious crime, categorized as a Class 5 felony. Offenders can face up to 10 years in prison and fines as high as $2,000.
Those penalties can quickly rise, however, based on the facts in the case. If the court determines that someone’s actions were wanton, demonstrating a disregard for others’ safety, and grossly negligent, it can elevate the punishments. DUI manslaughter cases often fall into this standard. Guilty verdicts can lead to prison sentences of up to 20 years.
DUID Charges in Virginia
Driving under the influence of narcotics, often called a “DUID charge,” is also a serious crime in the state. Its penalties are very similar to those of a standard DUI, but a judge could also order mandatory rehab, education, or other programs to help.
The problem with these charges is that they are often hard to prove. Blood testing isn’t always accurate, since trace amounts of drugs can show up in a sober person’s blood. Testing also doesn’t cover every possible drug that could make someone high. Furthermore, people can be arrested for driving on legal substances, such as prescription drugs.
Our Firm Can Help with Your DUI Case in Chesapeake
No matter what the facts are in your case, our firm believes that you are innocent until proven guilty. You should always use your rights to defend yourself against any charges against you. Remember, the prosecution has the responsibility to prove your case beyond a reasonable doubt. Otherwise, you should remain free of criminal penalties.
Our firm is here to help build a credible defense for you. If you’ve been accused of driving under the influence, make sure to reach out to our team for help.
For a free consultation, call us today at (757) 267-4949, or schedule time with us online.
You guys did Great work I am completely satisfied Thank youB. Yanev Virginia Beach
Mr. Miller is one of the best there is professional and everyway and very knowledgeable trust in his process I’m very grateful to have had him as my attorney. Thank you again, Mr. Miller for everything.K. Smith Virginia Beach
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