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Campbell County multiple DUI criminal defense attorney

Most of the time, first-time offenders charged with driving under the influence (DUI) of drugs or alcohol are not given as serious charges as those who are accused of subsequent offenses. A first-time DUI may result in fines, a minimum of 48 hours in jail, and the requirement to go through a treatment program. Serious cases involving injuries or death are given stiffer penalties. However, for the most part, the state of Tennessee tries to make sure that first offenders will not be convicted of another DUI offense. The more convictions on a person’s record, the harsher the punishments will be.

What Happens if a Driver Reaches Four DUI Offenses?

With each DUI conviction, a driver sees his or her license revoked for a certain amount of time: one year for first offenses, two years for second offenses, and six years for third offenses. Drivers are able to apply for a restricted license during the period of revocation.

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Campbell County criminal defense attorney

Parents who drink and drive can expect more severe punishments if they drive with their child in the car. Tennessee’s child endangerment law covers DUI offenses with a child in the car, because the child is put in danger when he or she is in a car with an impaired driver. The broad definition of child endangerment is any act -- or neglect of an act -- that causes a child to suffer physical, emotional, or psychological abuse. Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) reported that in 2017, DUI-related accidents were the cause of 220 child fatalities (of 1,147) nationally, and 118 of these were children inside the vehicles of drunk drivers.

Tennessee Drunk Driving Punishments

Adults who are charged with a DUI without a child present can expect jail time and fines, depending on how many previous charges they have received. The following are the penalties a Tennessee motorist can face with a DUI charge:

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Campbell County DUI school zone lawyer

Driving under the influence (DUI) is illegal in all 50 states. Tennessee passed a bill earlier this year to make the penalties for DUI offenses within a school zone more severe. Since most pedestrians in school zones are children, the need for safe driving is more important in order to keep the young ones protected from injury. The new law, which was introduced and passed in February, states that anyone driving under the influence in a school zone will be subject to double the punishment for an ordinary DUI offense outside of the school zone. For misdemeanor offenders, this means that both fines and prison terms will be doubled.

New Tennessee Law

The new Tennessee law for DUI offenses within school zones also covers:

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Campbell County DUI lawyer

According to the Tennessee Highway Patrol, the number of alcohol-related motor vehicle crashes has dropped in Campbell County since 2014, but so far this year, there have been nine, bringing the total to 336 since 2009.

Regardless of whether a driver has consumed alcohol, you can expect to be pulled over if a police officer sees you driving erratically down the road. When this happens, and you have been drinking, you could face the possibility of DUI charges.

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Posted on in DUI/DWI

Jacksboro TN DUI defense attorneyHere in the state of Tennessee, there have been dozens of initiatives designed to reduce the number of inebriated drivers on the roads. From heightened criminal punishment to increases in highway surveillance, law enforcement officials and prosecutors are taking drunk driving incredibly seriously throughout the state. According to the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security, over 7,300 people were arrested on DUI charges statewide throughout 2017. If you have been arrested on DUI charges, it is critically important to seek out legal assistance as soon as possible. 

Punishment for a DUI Conviction

Due to the high potential for fatal car accidents when a driver is inebriated, the state of Tennessee punishes drunk drivers more harshly than the vast majority of states. Even a first-time DUI offender will face a minimum of two full days in jail and fines of at least $350. Without quality legal representation, a first-time DUI offender could be subjected to a jail sentence of up to one year, one year of license revocation, and potential fines as high as $1,500. 

A second or third DUI conviction carries the same maximum prison sentence but comes with higher fines and much longer periods of driver’s license revocation. If you have been convicted of a fourth DUI, you will face felony charges and a minimum of one year in jail. More severe criminal punishment can be placed on those who are convicted of vehicular assault, vehicular homicide, or aggravated vehicular homicide. 

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