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Drunk driving is a serious crime with serious consequences. If you have been arrested for DUI, you understand the stress and uncertainty of a potential conviction. Simple DUI is usually charged as a misdemeanor; however, aggravated circumstances may lead to a felony accusation. If you've been accused of felony DUI in California, contact a Sacramento criminal defense attorney from our firm as soon as possible. Together, we can create an aggressive and strategic defense plan to keep you out of jail.Why am I Being Charged with a Felony Offense?
Generally speaking, felony DUI is an elevated DUI accusation. You can be accused of felony DUI through a variety of circumstances. First, you may be accused of Felony DUI if police suspect that you injured or killed someone while driving drunk. If another person suffered bodily harm because you were legally intoxicated, you may face a felony DUI conviction. You may be charged with vehicular manslaughter or DUI second degree murder under California law, and your criminal record and the specific circumstance surrounding your case will determine whether or not your case will be handled as a murder or manslaughter case. Both of these crimes are felonies and are punishable by fines and incarceration.
If you have been convicted of felony DUI in the past, any subsequent DUI cases may be charged as felony DUI. In California, subsequent felony offenses are treated very seriously. Even if your second DUI was a simple misdemeanor, you may be charged with a felony if you have been convicted of felony DUI in the past. Sometimes, individuals who have been accused and convicted of multiple misdemeanor offenses in the past will be charged with felony DUI even if their previous cases did not involve aggravated circumstances. In California, drunk driving is a priorable crime. In other words, multiple DUI convictions lead to harsher penalties. Prior offenses include criminal convictions from other states, too.Aggravated Circumstances for DUI
Your DUI case may be considered a serious offense if committed under aggravated circumstances. Generally speaking, aggravated circumstances may necessitate harsher penalties if you are convicted. For example, a regular DUI may be considered aggravated if your BAC was more than .20% at the time of your arrest. In some states, a BAC of .16% is considered aggravated as well. If police believe that your DUI caused an accident, you may be charged with a stiffer crime than simple drunk driving.
Additionally, driving drunk with a child in the car is considered a more serious offense. According to Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), driving under the influence with a child in the car is especially risky because drunk drivers are less likely to place the child in a car seat or seat belt. In California, a "child" is any passengers less than 14 years old. If you were on probation or speeding excessively when you were arrested for drunk driving, you may be accused of committing DUI with aggravated circumstances.Arrested for Felony DUI? Our DUI Attorneys Can Help!
At Wise Law Group, PC, we are wholeheartedly dedicated to giving our clients the best legal representation we can offer. We are passionate about helping people by giving them the top-notch representation that they need. If you've been arrested, contact our office today and schedule a case consultation. Once we understand the specific circumstances surrounding your arrested, we can inform you of your rights and legal options. When you work with our firm, you have the knowledge and understanding of a former prosecutor fighting for your rights. Contact a Sacramento DUI lawyer today!