Twin Cities DWI Lawyer, Attorney
When an individual drives under the influence of alcohol, there are a number of impairments that occur. Not only does a person encounter visual impairment, but he or she also experiences impairment of the motor skills and mental capacity.
In Minnesota, drunk driving laws apply to individuals operating a motor vehicle of any type while drinking alcohol. This means that an individual driving an ATV can be cited for drunk driving. Other vehicles include boats, airplanes, and snowmobiles.
As a result, there are 4 different crimes as cited under Minnesota law. They include:
- Fourth Degree Misdemeanor DWI
- Third Degree Misdemeanor DWI
- Second Degree Gross Misdemeanor DWI
- First Degree Felony DWI
The severity of the consequences of a DWI do vary. It depends on what aggravating factors are at play at the time the offense is committed. These include, but are not limited to:
- Having a blood alcohol level higher than .20 at the time of the offense or two hours after it is committed.
- Having a child under the age of 16 present in the motor vehicle. This is if the child is more than 3 years younger than the offender.
- Having a prior drunk driving conviction sometime in the past ten years.
To break down the different degrees of a drunk driving crime, a Fourth Degree Felony DWIapplies to when a person is under the influence of alcohol or another controlled substance. Also, the alcohol concentration is .08 or more. If the individual is operating a commercial vehicle, the blood alcohol level is above .04.
In a Third Degree Misdemeanor DWI is the result of having one aggravating factor present at the time the offense occurred.
In a Second Degree Misdemeanor DWI, there must be two or more aggravating factors at play at the time of the offense.
And in a First Degree Misdemeanor DWI, this offense is within 10 years of another drunk driving offense.
As for prison time, a misdemeanor conviction can carry around a $1,000 fine and/or 90 days in jail. A gross misdemeanor is a $3,000 fine and/or up to 1 year in jail. A felony conviction can carry a $14,000 fine and/or prison time of up to 7 years.
There are also civil consequences that include losing driving rights, losing the motor vehicle, losing license plates, and even facing increased insurance premiums.
What should you do?
If you’ve been charged with a drunk driving offense, it is ideal to seek the assistance of an experienced Minnesota attorney in order to have a fair ending.
Call Gearin Law Office at 651-731-4900 to get a free consultation so that your case can be reviewed and you can learn of what the next steps are to find the right resolution to your particular case. Minnesota has around 50,000 drunk driving arrests annually, so you want an attorney that has a proven track record in handling some of these very cases.
So don’t do this alone and get help today. Why do something alone if you don’t have to?