The law prescribes certain punishments for people who are arrested and convicted of driving while intoxicated, such as jail time, license revocation, and fines. However, an individual may face a harsher punishment if there were aggravating circumstances present during his or her arrest. Here’s more information about this issue to help a person arrested for this crime develop an effective DWI Defense in New Iberia LA, against intoxicated driving charges.
In Louisiana, there are several things that can “enhance” a DWI offense and result in a harsher punishment.
- The individual had a blood alcohol level of .15 or .20
- There was a child under the age of 12 in the vehicle (the driver will be charged with child endangerment in addition to DWI)
- The person refused to take a breathalyzer or other blood alcohol test
- The person was driving significantly over the speed limit or recklessly
- The individual caused an accident that resulted in injury, death, or property damage
- There defendant had a weapon
- The individual has prior DWI convictions
Any of these factors may result in a harsher jail sentence, additional charges being brought or, in some cases, a charge upgrade from misdemeanor to felony. For instance, if the person hurts someone else in an accident, he or she may be charged with First Degree Negligent Injuring, which is a felony in Louisiana and may result in the person being sentenced to a five-year prison term if convicted.
Aggressive Defense Required
Avoiding the penalties associated with enhanced DWI charges requires a more aggressive defense, which may involve anything from questioning the police officer’s version of events to attacking the accuracy of the blood alcohol tests to finding a way to get evidence barred from being used in court. If the prosecution appears to have a solid case, then the attorney can negotiate a plea bargain with the prosecutor that keeps the number of consequences the defendant is hit with to a minimum.
Despite whatever mistakes an individual may make, he or she deserves the best available DWI Defense in New Iberia LA. For more information about enhanced DWI sentencing or to hire an attorney to help with a DWI case, visit chrisrichardattorney.com.
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