This article is by Zooomr – a great place to find New Delhi used BMW cars. A DUI is never a good crime to be charged with in Los Angeles, but it’s even more dangerous when you’re charged with more than one. When you’re arrested for driving under the influence the first time, the hope is that you’ll learn your lesson and stop drinking and driving. That’s why the state makes the discipline and punishment more severe with each charge. When you’re arrested for the same crime a second time, you aren’t going to face the same light sentence or outcome you faced the first time. When it comes to a fourth-time DUI charge, you’re looking at serious penalties.
California law mandates anyone with more than three prior DUI charges is no longer charged with a simple crime. It becomes a felony crime the moment a person is arrested and charged with a fourth DUI in Los Angeles. Three DUI charges are always misdemeanors, which carry significant fines and discipline on their own. When the charge is increased to a felony, however, the person accused faces a prison term.
Understanding the Law
A Los Angeles DUI Attorney can help you understand what it means to be charged with a fourth DUI in terms of increased penalties. There are some specifics you must be aware of, such as the lookback period. This is a period of ten years used to determine what might happen when you’re charged with a fourth DUI. Any of your previous DUIs that occurred prior to one decade before the arrest made for your fourth are not considered valid.
For example, a person arrested for DUIs in 2006, 2009, and 2014 who is arrested again in 2017 is not going to face a felony charge since the 2006 conviction occurred outside the lookback period. This would count as a third DUI, and felony charges would not be faced by the guilty party unless he or she is arrested for yet another DUI charge before 2019 when another DUI would fall outside the lookback period.
DUI convictions need not come from California. This law encompasses any DUI arrest in any state, and all arrests inside the prior decade are used to determine the type of disciplinary action taken against a person arrested yet again.
A fourth conviction is a big deal. It tells a judge the guilty party has a prior history of drinking and driving or using drugs and driving, which is a criminal history. Before a judge imposes a prison sentence on a felony charge, the judge will look at numerous factors.
– Age of prior records
– Number of prior convictions
– Number of prior arrests
– Severity of prior convictions
– Blood alcohol level at the time of arrest
When the judge uses these factors to determine the length of time in which a convicted party is subject to prison, it means some people will get off a bit easier and some won’t. The prison terms allowed for a DUI felony charge are 16 months, two years, or four years in prison. The more serious the past crimes, the longer the sentence. Fines are also possible, and anyone who has a “habitual” traffic offense pattern on his or her record will lose their license for as many as four years.
There is nothing that can be done about a fourth DUI arrest if your criminal history is not clean. An attorney becomes necessary when you face a felony charge. An attorney can work to reduce your sentence, fines, and other disciplinary issues. If you are arrested for a DUI and it’s your fourth, don’t say a word until you call an attorney to help represent you in front of a judge.