Typical DWI charges carry strict penalties. However, the presence of certain aggravating factors can make the punishments even greater. While a blood alcohol content of .08% can get you arrested for drunk driving, an aggravated DWI charge can result from having a blood alcohol of 0.16% and is typically charged as a felony. This will easy carry higher fines and much longer jail time.
What are aggravating factors?
Having minors present in the vehicle (children under 15) during a DWI arrest can also result in an aggravated DWI. This can result in a prison sentence of two years rather than the standard six months. In addition, while a first and second DWI conviction are often charged as misdemeanors, your third misdemeanor will automatically be charged as a felony with enhanced penalties.
If a person has been charged with or convicted of a DWI, their driver's license will be automatically revoked for a certain period of time. Should these people continue to drive with a suspended license and be stopped for DWI, their penalties will also increase.
If someone is committing a DWI and is excessively speeding, this is also grounds for an aggravated DWI charge. Being clocked at driving 30 miles or more over the speed limit can result in higher penalties.
Get the Aggressive Defense You Need
For such a serious charge, you will need a skilled DWI lawyer who can evaluate the circumstances of your case, including how any sobriety or chemical tests were administered to ensure that your rights were not violated. An attorney can fully apprise you of your rights and possibly plea bargains.