Most accusations involving DUI in Plantation are Misdemeanors under state law. This means a conviction can only result in up to nine months in Jail and a loss of license for at least 180 days. While these are harsh penalties, the law may also allow a person to enroll in a pretrial diversion DUI program that could eventually dismiss the charges.
Unfortunately, Felony DUI charges are an exception to these rules. A Felony drunk driving charge may result from an individual having multiple DUIs on their record or when an incident involves harm to another person. In these cases, a Felony will permanently impact your life. A Plantation Felony DUI lawyer is prepared to help you form a defense against these allegations. A seasoned Attorney at Leifert & Leifert can contest the facts at the case’s core or argue that an aggravated drunk driving charge is inappropriate under the circumstances.
Felony DUI Charges Under State Law
DUI charges alleging the consumption of drugs or alcohol while in control of a vehicle are usually Misdemeanor cases. However, a collection of factors may lead a Prosecutor to justify Felony-level charges.
Perhaps the most common reason under Florida Statute § 316.193 is a person’s prior criminal history. According to the statute, a third violation within ten years is a Felony of the third degree. These convictions do not need to occur in Plantation or anywhere else in the state. In fact, convictions anywhere can count towards this determination.
The other factor that may lead to a Felony drunk driving charge is the impact of this event on other people. Any DUI case that results in injury or death to a person other than the defendant will bring Felony charges. In these situations, a person’s prior criminal record is irrelevant. A Felony DUI attorney could help a person understand why their DUI case is moving forward as a Felony under state law.
The Potential Consequences of a Felony Drunk Driving Conviction
A DUI that moves forward as a Felony can significantly change an individual’s life. The exact consequence of a conviction will depend on the specific circumstances that led to an arrest. For example, a Felony DUI case that occurs because of a person’s prior criminal record will usually be a Felony of the third degree. This conviction can bring a Prison sentence of up to five years and a fine of up to $5,000. This is in addition to a mandatory loss of license and the requirement to install an ignition interlock device.
Even more serious consequences can result from incidents that involve injury or death to another. While an injury case will also be a Felony of the third degree, incidents resulting in another’s death can be second or first-degree cases. These cases can result in Prison sentences of over ten years.
Defending Against Felony DUI Charges
The goal of a Felony DUI Lawyer in Plantation is to raise a reasonable doubt about these charges in Court. This can include challenging an arresting Officer’s recollection of events or their justification for making a traffic stop. It can also involve questioning whether the facts permit a Prosecutor to pursue a case as a Felony as opposed to a common Misdemeanor. Talking with a Legal Representative today allows them to evaluate the situation and begin forming a defense.
Contact a Plantation Felony DUI Attorney Today
A Felony-level drunk driving accusation is always a serious matter. Even the simplest examples of these cases will mark you as a felon after a conviction and carry the potential for a multiple-year Prison sentence. If you have been arrested for DUI and multiple prior convictions are on your record or the event resulted in injury to another person, you need help from a dedicated Legal Team.
A Plantation DUI Lawyer can provide this help. They could work to evaluate the reason for an arrest, determine if a Felony-level charge is appropriate, and fight to protect your rights in Court. Speak with Leifert & Leifert today to learn more about your defense options.