Understanding an Aggravated DUI in Arizona
Have you been charged with two or more DUIs in the last seven years? Driving under the influence again will earn you a felony aggravated DUI charge. However, that’s not the only way to receive an aggravated DUI in Arizona. As criminal law experts, we know Arizona DUI laws can seem overwhelming. At Van Norman Law, we want to help you understand what constitutes an aggravated DUI and what penalties the charge entails.
What is an aggravated DUI?
In Arizona, an aggravated DUI is a felony offense while other levels of DUI charges are only misdemeanors. All criminal charges are serious, but a felony is much more severe than a misdemeanor and often results in prison time. An aggravated DUI charge can, in fact, earn two different levels of felonies, depending on the circumstances.
For instance, you can be charged with a class 6 felony if you are caught driving under the influence with a child of 15 or under in the vehicle. A class 6 felony is the lowest and least serious type of felony in Arizona, meaning the penalties are less severe than other felony classes.
However, you may be charged with a more severe class 4 felony if you are caught driving under the influence if:
- You have already committed two or more DUI offenses in the last seven years
- Your driver’s license has already been suspended or revoked
- Or, you are operating a vehicle without an ignition interlock device after being required to install one in any vehicle you drive
What are the penalties for an aggravated DUI in Arizona?
As with all DUI convictions, an aggravated DUI of any type will result in mandatory alcohol screening, counseling, community service, and the installation of an ignition interlock device in your vehicle.
After an aggravated DUI conviction of any kind, you will also lose any professional licenses you hold (doctor, real estate, etc.), your right to vote and your right to own a gun. However, felons may be able to regain their right to vote in Arizona.
The other penalties for an aggravated DUI depend on the level of felony and how many times you have committed the offense.
Aggravated DUI with a Child in the Vehicle
When it comes to a class 6 felony aggravated DUI, the penalties vary depending on your blood alcohol content (BAC). If your BAC is over 0.08% but less than 0.15%, you will face at least ten days in jail, but nine of those days can be suspended. Jail time increases to a minimum of 30 days if your BAC is over 0.15% and a minimum of 45 days for a BAC of .20% or higher.
First Offense Aggravated DUI
Keep in mind that a third or more DUI offense automatically results in a first offense aggravated DUI. The consequences of a first-time aggravated DUI offense include:
- A mandatory minimum of four months in prison
- Driver’s license suspension for three years
- Fines and fees totaling $4,600 or more
Second Offense Aggravated DUI
No matter how long it has been since a first offense aggravated DUI charge, any subsequent aggravated DUI counts as a second offense. The punishments for a second offense aggravated DUI include:
- 2.5 to 7.5 years in prison
- Revocation of driver’s license for at least three years
- At least $6,600 or more in fines and fees
Third Offense Aggravated DUI
The penalties for a third offense aggravated DUI are the most severe and include:
- Six to fifteen years in prison
- Revoked driver’s license for at least three years
Aggravated DUI Defense Lawyer in Scottsdale, Arizona
If you are facing any degree of aggravated DUI charge, you need to hire a criminal defense lawyer who has your best interests in mind. The experienced attorneys at Van Norman Law have been defending criminal cases in Arizona for over twenty years. Give us a call at 480-481-0616 today to schedule a free consultation and discuss strategies for your case.