While consuming alcohol until one become intoxicated is not a crime for those of legal age, it is a crime when a person decides to get behind the wheel of a vehicle no matter his or her age. Being accused of drunk driving is not like being issued a speeding ticket. It means going through tests on the side of the road, being taken into custody, going through intake and being charged with a DUI. A DUI charge in the state of New York and elsewhere means facing penalties such as fines, license suspension and sometimes even jail time.
Intoxication is not based on the number of drinks but rather other individual factors. The accused could be considered intoxicated because of the amount of alcohol consumed, the amount of food consumed before and during the consumption of alcohol, the length of time they drank, their weight and their gender. Thus, a skinny female that drank 2 drinks in an hour on an empty stomach could be just as intoxicated as a large man that drank 5 drinks in an hour on a full stomach.
A person’s blood alcohol content or BAC helps establish whether a person is over the legal limit. For a drunk driving charge, this means 0.08 of higher. For commercial drivers, this threshold is reduced to 0.04. A BAC reading of 0.18 or higher could be charged with aggravated drunk driving. A first drunk driving charge in New York could result in a penalty of a fine ranging between $500-$1,000, up to a year in jail and six months of license suspension. For an aggravated drunk driving charge, this could cause a person to face a fine of $1,000-$2,500, up to a year in jail and a year license suspension.
The aftermath of a drunk driving charge can be significant. Being able to drive to work, school and other places is necessary in our daily life. Losing this privilege can cause issues and even the ability to maintain a job. Even more so, the penalties associated can be serious, making it important to consider defense methods that could help to reduce or avoid these consequences
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