Repeat and Felony DUI
Depending on the number of previous DUI convictions or DWI convictions and other circumstances of your current arrest, you could be facing felony DUI charges. If you have four prior offenses within 10 years, or if you were previously convicted of vehicular assault or vehicular homicide while driving drunk or under the influence of drugs, your latest DUI or DWI can be charged as a felony.
Prior to passage and adoption of the felony DUI laws, persons who committed multiple driving under the influence crimes faced at most 365 days in jail. This relatively minor punishment, for criminals who repeatedly chose to drink and drive after previously being convicted and sentenced for DUI, drove the public to demand that the legislature make changes. In response to calls to "get tough on DUI", the legislature made a fifth DUI or Physical Control charge within ten years, a felony offense.
If you have been accused of felony DUI or Physical Control, and have had the requisite four prior offenses in ten years, your minimum possible sentence is twenty-two months in prison. This sentence could also be much longer, extending up to five years in prison, depending on how your case is handled.
If you have been accused of felony DUI because you had a prior vehicular assault or vehicular homicide conviction, your minimum possible sentence is thirteen months in prison. This sentence could also be much longer, extending up to five years in prison, depending on how your case is handled.
We Handle These Tough Cases
Those charged with repeat DUI need to immediately contact an attorney that regularly handles these types of cases. We have successfully taken Felony DUI cases to jury trial , including one of the first cases to be brought to trial in Washington state.
There are ways to improve your odds of not being sent to prison, and the attorneys at Newton & Hall know how to put you in the best legal position possible. Those accused of repeat or felony DUI should seek alcohol or drug counseling prior to being ordered to do so by the court, this may be their best chance of staying out of jail while waiting for their trial date. Judges are likely to want to incarcerate these persons immediately, under the auspices of providing protection to the community.
When you are facing serious criminal charges we can help. Call us at (253) 867-2675 to schedule a free initial consultation. Our criminal defense attorneys are standing by. The sooner you call our office, the sooner we can get started on your defense.