Help! I’ve Been Arrested for DUI… Again
Our Arizona DUI Lawyers Discuss What To Do After a Second or Subsequent DUI Arrest
If you’re convicted of DUI, it’s hopefully a one-time mistake. But unfortunately, many people are arrested for DUI more than one time in their lives. You probably remember the mandatory jail time and expensive fines from your first time, if it was out of Arizona.
Arizona DUI Categories
If you’re arrested for DUI a second time in Arizona, you won’t be charged with “Second DUI.” You will be charged with a DUI category based on factors in your case, like your blood alcohol content (BAC), and your penalties will be based on how many prior convictions you have. The categories for DUI in Arizona include:
- DUI- Impaired to the slightest degree: BAC from .04-.079
- DUI (per se): BAC from .08-.149
- Extreme DUI: BAC from .15-.19
- Super Extreme DUI: BAC .20+
- Baby DUI: Driver younger than 21 and BAC less than .08
- Aggravated DUI: Felony DUI triggered by aggravating factors
What Penalties Will I Face for a Second or Subsequent DUI Charge?
The penalties for a second, third, etc. DUI are much harsher than for a first Phoenix DUI conviction. For a subsequent per se DUI, the minimum jail sentence is 90 days and the minimum fine is $3,000. It will also result in a 12-month driver’s license revocation. You will have to keep your ignition interlock device (IID) installed longer, and complete more community service than your first DUI conviction.
The penalties are even stricter for a subsequent high-level BAC DUI conviction. Here, the minimum jail sentence is 120 days. The minimum fine is $3,250. Again, your driver’s license will be revoked for 12 months and you will be ordered to longer IID use and community service. You can expect the judge to get stricter and stricter if you are convicted for a third, fourth, and so on, DUI.
Will I Be Charged With Felony DUI If I’m Arrested For DUI Multiple Times?
Felony DUI, also known as Aggravated DUI, is more serious than the other DUI charges, which are misdemeanors. A felony conviction means time served in prison and a permanent black mark on your criminal record. There are several aggravating factors that can create a felony DUI in Arizona, which are set forth by A.R.S. § 28-1383:
- This is your third DUI in 7 years
- You were arrested while ordered to drive with an IID
- You were arrested while driving on a driver’s license that was suspended, restricted, etc.
- You had a passenger under 15 years old
- You were driving the wrong way down a freeway
As you can see, getting multiple DUIs puts you at risk of being charged with felony DUI. Being convicted of a felony is serious business, and you will lose rights like the right to own a firearm, vote, and run for public office. A first-time aggravated DUI means 4 months to 2 years in prison. The judge can order someone convicted of an aggravated DUI to use an IID for up to 2 years or even longer. The fines for a felony DUI conviction will start at $4,000.
Defenses To DUI Charges
It is difficult to dispute DUI charges when there is one or more chemical tests showing your above-the-limit BAC while driving. However, you still have constitutional rights that can’t be infringed upon by the police while arresting you for DUI. A police officer must have reasonable suspicion to pull you over, and probable cause to place you under arrest for DUI. Your defense might hinge on the fact that the police officer lacked either of these when you were arrested. The police could have also failed to read your Miranda rights, which could result in some statements you made while in custody being excluded from evidence. Your field sobriety tests or breathalyzer test may have been conducted improperly. You also could have a medical condition that caused a false positive on your breathalyzer test, or another testing error could have occurred. The best way to find out what defenses might apply in your case is by reviewing the details with an experienced defense attorney. Call 480-833-8000 to schedule your free consultation with our firm today.
Don’t Refuse a Breathalyzer Test Because You Have a Previous DUI
If you have a previous DUI and you’re pulled over after a few drinks in Arizona, your instinct may be to refuse to take the breathalyzer test. However, this probably isn’t the best course of action. If you refuse to take a breathalyzer test while driving in Arizona, you will face an administrative one-year driver’s license suspension. If the officer has probable cause to place you under arrest, you can be taken into custody and subjected to a chemical test at the police station anyway. That could mean your driving privileges being taken away longer, and the judge might consider it as a factor when deciding your penalties. Your best bet is to take the breathalyzer test and if your results are above the legal limit, find a defense in your case or negotiate a plea deal.
Possible Accompanying Charges
It isn’t uncommon for clients to come to us with charges accompanying their DUI charges. You could face serious penalties for these charges on their own, and can reduce the chance that the judge will take it easy on you with DUI sentencing. You need to work diligently on your defense if you are facing a DUI with additional charges.
One charge we sometimes see with a DUI arrest is using a false or fictitious driver’s license. This happens when you are arrested while using a fake ID or you altered your ID. You could also be charged with aggressive driving or reckless driving, depending on the circumstances.
Another serious charge we see accompanying DUI charges is failure to stop at an accident. If you are in a traffic accident that causes property damage, physical injury, or death, you need to stay at the scene. You have a duty to provide your name, address, license plate number, and driver’s license. You also have a duty to provide aid to the other driver, if necessary, like calling 911 for an ambulance. You could lose your driving privileges for 1-10 years if convicted of this charge, and could face jail time depending on the consequences of your accident.
Quality Arizona DUI Representation Starting as Low as $0 Down
If you’ve already been convicted of DUI in Gilbert and you weren’t satisfied with your previous representation, our firm may be a great option for you. Our experienced criminal defense lawyers have achieved favorable results for countless clients in situations just like yours. We offer payment plans for our DUI clients, with some starting as low as zero dollars down. Minimize the impact a DUI has on your life while spreading out the cost of high quality legal defense out into affordable installments. Let our defense team at Arizona Zero Down DUI review your case for defenses and plea deal possibilities. We can also speak to someone else about your case on your behalf, if necessary. Fill out our form or call into our office at 480-833-8000 to schedule your free initial consultation.
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