Sacramento Felony DUI Defense Attorney
While many DUI crimes are considered misdemeanor offenses, felony DUI charges are also possible depending on a variety of factors. It is also against the law to drive while under the influence of drugs. A “drug” is any substance that can affect your nervous system or affect your ability to drive or any drug that would not normally impair your ability to drive, but when combined with alcohol, has a potentially intoxicating effect. If you are pulled over and the police officer tests for any presence of an illegal drug, you can be charged a DUI even if you don’t feel intoxicated or affected. Likewise, if you’re on legal or prescription drugs, this too can lead to a DUI charge.
There are three ways for a DUI to be charged with a felony:
- Your DUI caused death or injury to another one
- You have three or more prior DUI’s – Driving under the influence is a “priorable” offense, meaning the penalties become harsher every time you are convicted for another same or similar offense. If you have three or more prior DUI convictions within the last ten-years, you will be charged with a felony DUI.
- You have at least one prior felony DUI conviction – If you already have any felony DUI convictions, any additional DUI convictions will be charged as a felony.
Having a felony DUI is a serious issue with even harsher penalties than a misdemeanor DUI. They can result in lengthy terms in a state prison of at least 16 months. Courts can also impose heavy fines, as high as $10,000. Furthermore, probation is a possibility as either a replacement of prison time or fines or in addition to. Those on probation have very restricted liberties and must comply with many conditions the court imposes like drug and alcohol counseling, maintaining employment, submitting to random drug and alcohol tests and not committing any more DUI’s or other criminal offenses. You will also lose any driving privileges. Because driving isn’t considered a legal right, the state can revoke them. If you are charged with a felony DUI, seek a Sacramento DUI lawyer immediately.
We can assist you not only with your criminal charge, but also in pursuing your administrative process with the DMV, particularly if you are a commercial driver, or your need to retain a driver’s license is otherwise particularly critical. We know California DUI law and procedure, and we know how to frame your case to give you the best opportunity for overcoming or minimizing the consequences of a DUI charge or license suspension or revocation.