– from Shirley C. in Wauwatosa, WI
Last week I was pulled over for a DUI. I got myself in trouble a few times when I was in high school prank calling, egging houses, and toilet papering houses. I was charged with vandalism. I heard prior criminal offenses contribute to determining a DUI a felony. Is this true?
Criminal Defense Attorney Response:
Sounds like you have been given some poor information. The judge may consider the passed offenses when determining the severity of your penalties, but your past will not non drunk driving offenses will not determine whether you get a felony or not.
In DUI cases, what determines if the offense is a felony or not are your past drunk driving charges as well as the circumstances of your DUI charge. The following is good general outline of what determines if a DUI is a felony charge:
- A DUI charge with 2 or more prior DUI convictions
- A DUI charge with a child under 14 in the car
- A DUI where someone suffered an injury in an accident
- A DUI when someone was killed in an accident
Hope this helps. Let us know if our DUI lawyers can help you further in your case.
Jeff Hughes, J.D.