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DUI cases tend to proceed rapidly from the time of arrest, in terms of both criminal proceedings and administrative proceedings undertaken by the Alabama Department of Public Safety (DPS). The severe consequences that may result from a DUI arrest could include a suspension of driving privileges, fines, jail time, participation in substance abuse counseling or education programs, and more.

A Crenshaw County DUI lawyer may be able to evaluate your situation and work toward building a defense strategy in your case. While a DUI arrest could endanger both your job and your relationships and a conviction might hurt your future employment opportunities and damage your reputation, a qualified criminal defense attorney could work with you to resolve your charges in as positive a manner as possible.

DUI Offenses in Crenshaw County

Alabama Code §32-5A-191 establishes the offense of driving under the influence of alcohol or controlled substances, or DUI for short. This offense occurs when individuals drive or have physical control over a motor vehicle while:

  • Under the influence of alcohol
  • Their blood alcohol concentration (BAC) equals or exceeds 0.08 percent
  • Under the influence of a controlled substance that makes them unable to drive safely
  • Under the combined influence of alcohol and a controlled substance that makes them unable to drive safely
  • Under the influence of any substance that makes them unable to drive safely

As a knowledgeable attorney could explain, drivers under the age of 21 are subject to different BAC standard for DUI than adults. These drivers commit a DUI offense if their BAC measures 0.02 percent or more. Minor drivers may face DUI charges even if they can drive safely, solely due to their BAC.

Likewise, school bus and daycare drivers may not drive when their BAC measures 0.02 percent or more, and drivers of commercial motor vehicles are subject to a BAC limit of 0.04 percent. These BAC standards also apply regardless of the actual impairment of the drivers. Since BAC standards for minors, school bus drivers, daycare drivers, and drivers of commercial vehicles are less stringent, it may be even more important to consult a DUI lawyer in Crenshaw County for legal representation.

Potential Penalties for First-Time Drunk Driving Offenses

The possible penalties for even a first-time DUI can be extremely harsh. While the initial charge a misdemeanor offense, convicted individuals may face a jail sentence of up to one year, a fine ranging from $600 to $2,100, or both. These drivers must also serve a 90-day license suspension if they do not or cannot pay the costs of installing and maintaining an ignition interlock device (IID) in their vehicle(s) for 90 days.

Aggravating Factors

It should be noted that there are harsher penalties for drivers who commit DUI in certain situations. As an example, if drivers had a child passenger under the age of 14 at the time of their alleged offense, refused blood or breath tests, caused injuries to others, or had a BAC of 0.15 percent or more, they must serve a 90-day license suspension or install and maintain an IID for one year.

A minor driver with a BAC of between 0.02 and 0.08 percent will face a 30-day license suspension for a first DUI offense. For subsequent crimes, minor drivers could face fines, mandatory attendance, and completion of a DUI or substance abuse court referral program, and other penalties.

A school bus or day care driver who faces first-time DUI charges will receive an automatic one-year license suspension. This suspension comes with the other penalties that individuals may face for a DUI conviction. As DUI penalties could have a significant impact on the ability of drivers to remain employed, contacting a Crenshaw County attorney is highly advisable.

Contact a Crenshaw County DUI Attorney

The penalties for a first-time DUI conviction are severe, and they become even harsher when drivers face second or subsequent DUI charges. Jail sentences become a mandatory element of subsequent DUI convictions, along with higher fines and extended periods of license suspension and IID usage. Consequently, you may find it beneficial to get in touch with a Crenshaw County DUI lawyer for legal guidance.

Do not risk the damage that even a first-time DUI can cause you both personally and professionally. If you take steps to secure legal counsel, you might place yourself in a better position to fight the charges against you. Call today to learn more.