If you are a driver, it is important to understand the potential consequences of a drunk driving conviction. If you face criminal DUI charges, Wilson-Goodman Law Group, PLLC, can thoroughly defend you and work to protect your driving privileges.
A first-offense, non-extreme DUI is a Class 1 misdemeanor. In Arizona, if you are found guilty of a first-offense DUI, you will spend at least one day in jail. The maximum sentence you could face would be six months in jail, a $2,500 fine plus tax, and five years of probation. In addition, a first-offense DUI includes a 90-day driver’s license suspension. You may be eligible for a work permit after 30 days. The license suspension is likely regardless of the outcome of your criminal case.
If you are arrested for driving under the influence and have had a prior conviction within the past seven years, you face a minimum jail sentence of 30 days, a maximum jail sentence of up to six months, a minimum fine of $2,500 plus tax, five years of probation, and a mandatory one-year driver’s license revocation. At the end of the one-year revocation, you must reapply for a driver’s license, must attend traffic school, must pay a reinstatement fee, and must install and maintain an ignition interlock device on all personal vehicles you drive for a period of one year following the restoration of your driver’s license. The cost of the interlock device can approach $1,000.
An extreme DUI occurs when a person’s blood or breath alcohol concentration exceeds .15 percent. This charge escalates the possible punishments for a first-offense DUI. If you are convicted of an extreme DUI — EVEN IF THIS IS YOUR FIRST OFFENSE — you must serve a minimum jail sentence of 10 days. Penalties include a maximum jail term of six months, a minimum fine of $2,500 plus tax, five years of probation, loss of driving privileges for a minimum of 90 days, and an ignition interlock device on all personal vehicles you drive for a period of one year.
If you are convicted of an extreme DUI within seven years of a previous DUI conviction (regardless of whether the previous DUI was an extreme DUI,) you must serve a mandatory minimum of 60 days in jail. In addition, you face a maximum jail sentence of six months, a maximum fine of $2,500 plus tax, five years of probation, loss of driving privileges for one year, and the subsequent requirement of the installation of an ignition interlock device on all personal vehicles for an additional year.
Aggravated DUI is the most serious type of DUI charge. It is a Class 4 felony. You could be charged with an aggravated DUI if, at the time of your arrest, you: (1) Had no valid driver’s license, or (2) Had two prior DUI convictions in the past five years, or (3) Were driving in violation of either a driver’s license restriction or while you were suspended, or (4) Had a child under the age of 15 in the vehicle with you while you were driving under the influence. A conviction for aggravated DUI carries a minimum of four months in prison. An Arizona aggravated DUI conviction also requires a mandatory minimum three-year driver’s license revocation. After revocation, you must apply for reinstatement and get approval from the Motor Vehicle Department, in addition to other significant penalties.
Mandatory Minimum Jail Sentences: First DUI (non-extreme): 10 days Second DUI (non-extreme): 30 days Extreme DUI: 10 days.
Almost all jail sentences are served in the county jail, either in the Lower Buckeye Jail or in Tent City, a division of the Maricopa County Durango Jail, in Phoenix, Arizona. Scottsdale and Tempe have separate facilities and take inmates on a case-by-case basis.
If you are under arrest and want to know your rights immediately, call the emergency criminal line or after-hours number 480-686-6180.