No one plans on getting a DUI or a DWI. They are usually the result of a momentary lapse of judgement. Maybe you thought the drive was short enough, or you had enough coffee, or you hadn’t had that much to drink in the first place. If you’re like most people who get DUI/DWIs, your intention was never to do harm. You were just trying to get from point A to point B, and got caught up in the middle.
However, that doesn’t make DUI/DWIs any less serious in the eyes of the law. This is especially true if you already have a DUI on your record, especially if less than 10 years have passed since you got it. Second DUIs are more serious than first DUIs, and the average punishment for a second DUI is often worse than the average punishment for a first DUI.
In the State of Connecticut, charges for a second DUI offense within 10 years of a first offense can include:
- A felony conviction, which can have many negative consequences
- Mandatory alcohol and/or drug treatment
- Fines up to $4,000
- 45-day minimum license suspension (followed by three years with an ignition interlock device)
- 100+ hours of community service
- Up to two years in prison (with a mandatory minimum of 120 days)
- Revocation of commercial driver’s license, if applicable.
If this is your third or fourth DUI charge, those penalties can become even more drastic, including:
- Fines up to $8,000
- Extended driver’s license suspension or permanent driver’s license revocation.
- Up to three years in prison with a one-year mandatory minimum.
These penalties are just for standard repeat DUIs. They can become even more severe if there are “aggravated circumstances”, or factors that compound the severity of the DUI. These include:
- Minors present in the car
- Having a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) over twice the legal limit
- Driving on a suspended or revoked license
- Refusing to submit to chemical testing (breath, blood, or urine)
- Fleeing the scene
- Resisting or refusing to cooperate with a police officer
- An accident involving serious injury and/or death.
The potential consequences of being convicted of a repeat DUI do not stop at the legal consequences that you can be sentenced to by a judge or jury. This sort of conviction can do major damage to other areas of your life. These include:
- Employment: You may lose your job, especially if you have to serve jail time or attend frequent court dates and related appointments. Getting another job may also be difficult, as repeat DUIs are felony convictions.
- Custody: If you are in the process of working through custody arrangements, repeat DUI convictions can be used against you.
- Immigration: If you are not an American citizen, multiple DUI convictions can seriously hamper your pathway to citizenship, and may even lead to your deportation.
- Social Programs: Multiple DUI convictions are felonies, which can make you ineligible for a number of governmental and social programs, including some public housing, scholarships, and grants.
These repercussions may seem overwhelmingly grim, but there’s hope. If you are facing a DUI in the Stonington, Connecticut area, Attorney Steven Tomeo is here for you.
Mr. Tomeo is a highly skilled traffic and DUI attorney. He has extensive training and experience in the DUI process, which he uses to get the best possible results for his clients.
In repeat DUI cases, having the right attorney can make the difference between a conviction derailing your life and being able to move on with a second chance. Don’t wait. Call Steven Tomeo and Associates now for a free consultation at (860) 764-2744.