DWI or Driving While Intoxicated is a felony in most States. If convicted of DWI, one can face jail time, fines, and possibly probation or community service. Often people who are caught drunk driving will also be charged with aggravated DWI which is punished by more jail time, fines, and a longer probation or DUI sentence. There are certain circumstances that can increase the charges of DWI in one’s case. If a person has a prior drug or alcohol-related offense, their chances of serving time for DWI increase significantly. Many times people who are caught DUI have no prior criminal record and are therefore tried as individuals.
A first offense DWI conviction in Louisiana will usually result in some jail time. The amount of time varies from case to case, but in most cases the offender will spend between eight and twelve months in jail. In addition, the judge may impose additional fines that must be paid before the defendant is released from jail. In most cases the judge will require the suspect to pay a hefty price bond in order to be released from jail. Failure to appear in court for these fines can result in additional charges of failure to appear.
After being arrested for a DWI violation, it is important to consult a lawyer immediately. A DWI lawyer can help you fight for a new trial or negotiate for lesser charges if there are grounds for you to seek a new trial. In some cases, especially when the arresting officer has failed to appear, it can be easy to get a new trial, but an experienced attorney can help you fight for more, or even get the charges dismissed.
Some drunk driving cases are tried as misdemeanors. For first offense charges, a misdemeanor DWI charge may be filed against the driver. However, it is very possible that a first offense DWI charge can lead to a felony conviction. In order to avoid the possibility of serious jail time, a first time offender should take a formal educational course on the effects of alcohol and driving. While it is illegal to drink and drive in Louisiana, it is perfectly acceptable to know what your limit is. As long as you follow your state’s driving laws, you will be able to avoid serious penalties that may come with a first offense of DWI.
DWI Louisiana laws do not define exactly what constitutes a DUI. For first offense charges, the penalties range from a minimum of a fine to a maximum jail term. The penalties become more severe if it is proven that the defendant was driving while intoxicated. For example, most states consider a BAC of 0.08 percent or more to be a DUI.
The penalties for DUI in Louisiana are designed to deter drunk driving and protect the public. For this reason, a drunk driving conviction may be more serious than other types of criminal charges. If you were arrested for a drunk driving offense in Louisiana, it is important that you retain an attorney who has experience with the courts in this area. A lawyer can examine the evidence against you and help you determine whether there is probable cause to believe that you are guilty of driving while intoxicated. In many cases, a DUI attorney may also be able to negotiate a plea bargain with the prosecutor in exchange for a reduced sentence. This can often save a person’s freedom and ensure that they are not sentenced to jail time.