Being pulled over in New York and other states can be nerve wrecking for motorists. In some cases it may not be clear why he or she is being pulled over. In other cases, a motorist may have an idea; however, they seek to get off just a warning. Whether it was a traffic violation or because of suspicious activities, when law enforcement stops a vehicle, they could ask the driver to take a field sobriety test if they believe the driver is under the influence of alcohol. Based on the results of these tests, a driver could face a drunk driving charge.
A DWI might be considered a traffic offense, it could carry with it serious penalties. Because of this, it is important to understand the criminal consequences that could befall an individual facing a drunk driving charge. In the state of New York an individual is charges with driving while intoxicated when his or her blood alcohol content is 0.08 percent or higher. The charge could be aggravated if his or her BAC is 0.18 or higher.
For a first offense, a driver could face a fine between $500 and $1,000, up to a year in jail and a license revocation for at least 6 months. A second DWI in a 10-year span is considered a felony and could result in a fine between $1,000 and $5,000, up to 4 years in prison and license of revocation. If a person is charged with a third DWI in a 10-year span, he or she could face a fine between $2,000 and $10,000, up to 7 years in prison and license revocation for one year.
Because the penalties of a drunk driving charge can be harsh, it is important for motorists to understand their rights. Motorists can assert a defense against these charges, even challenging the traffic stop or the collection of evidence. This could help the accused reduce and even dismiss the charges against them.
James L. Riotto is an accomplished criminal defense attorney serving clients in New York. With an extensive background in law enforcement and criminal prosecution, his approach to each case is unique and informed by years of experience with the New York criminal justice system. As a graduate from Albany Law School and before going on to start his own practice, James worked at the Albany County District Attorney's Office, where he helped prosecute many DWI offenses. His inside knowledge of the tactics used to gain convictions provides him with a particular advantage when defending against DUI and other criminal charges.
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