Are you searching for an Ellicott City DUI lawyer? Ellicott City is part of the Baltimore Metropolitan area and is known for “Historic Ellicott City”. Within Ellicott city, there are many businesses and a blossoming night life, which many people enjoy.
However, sometimes a person can have a little too much fun, leading to not so fun results. Having one too many can lead to disastrous results.
If you have found yourself looking at a DUI or DWI charge, you need an Ellicott City DUI lawyer. Call Rice, Murtha & Psoras to hear more about how we can help you fight these charges.
What is the Difference Between a DUI and DWI?
Driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while intoxicated (DWI) are both serious charges that can result in fines, loss of privilege to drive, required ignition interlock and/or up to four years in prison.
Driving while impaired is the lesser of the two drunk driving offenses. In order to be charged with a DWI the driver’s blood alcohol content (BAC) must be between .06 and .07.
When charged with a DUI, the driver’s BAC must be .08 or higher. Since a DUI is a more serious offense, the penalties are more severe.
No matter what your BAC was, if you have been charged with a drunk driving offense, you need a skillful lawyer on your side. Call Rice, Murtha & Psoras immediately.
If you are arrested and charged with a drunk driving offense, the penalties can range from prison time, to fines, to points on your license and even participation in a mandatory interlock ignition system program.
If you are convicted of a DUI you can be facing up to one year in jail, meanwhile, if you are convicted of a DWI your jail time is only up to two months in jail. If you are convicted of a DWI your fines and penalties could be up to $500.
However, if you are charged with a DUI, your fines can be as much as $1,000. Finally, if you have been charged with either a DUI or DWI, your license can be suspended for six months.
These are all penalties for first time drunk driving charges. Of course, for each following drunk driving conviction, the penalties increase.
Many of these penalties can impose greatly upon your life. Most people don’t have the amount of money sitting around that it takes to comply with a drunk driving charge.
Many people also don’t have the resources it takes to get to work once their license is suspended. These penalties can mean you face life altering effects, such as loss of a job or even time away from your family when you are serving your prison sentence.
Why take any chances? If you are charged with a DUI or a DWI, you need to call an Ellicott City drunk driving attorney. At Rice, Murtha & Psoras, we can help you.
Drunk Driving Reduction Act
In 2016 Maryland implemented a new law increasing the penalties for impaired driving. Upon conviction, the law mandates that an ignition interlock device be installed in the vehicle.
Participation with the device is required for convictions of DUIs, DWIs while transporting a minor under the age of 16 and homicide or life-threatening injury by motor vehicle while DUI or DWI.
Now you may be asking, is the device required for life? The answer is no. The length of time that is required depends on if it was the driver’s first conviction.
For the first incident, the device is required for six months. For the second incident, the requirement is one year. And for the third and subsequent charges, the time period is three years.
Furthermore, if the driver receives a DWI after refusing to take a chemical test, the court shall require participation with the interlock system for one year.
If you have been charged with either a DUI or a DWI, no matter if it was your first or third offense, you need a lawyer. Participating in the ignition interlock program can affect your life for the future months to come.
If you contact an Ellicott City DUI attorney, we will help fight to minimize your charges.
Defenses to a DUI Charge
If you have been accused of DUI, there is are defenses that can be established to negate the possibility of a conviction.
The first defense is that there was no probable cause for arrest or the arrest was not by the book. You may be able to challenge the initial stop if the police searched your vehicle and did not have probable cause.
You may also challenge your arrest if no Miranda warnings were given at the time of arrest. If the police violated these requirements then any evidence, including the DUI, can often be suppressed, leading to the case to be dropped.
However, if the police did everything by the law, you may still have a defense. There are affirmative defenses, that claim yes, I broke the law, but I had a good reason to.
These affirmative defenses include entrapment. This means that the police offer required the person to drive under the influence. Another defense may be involuntary intoxication.
This defense is where a person claims that they had been intoxicated without their knowledge.
Any type of defense to a drunk driving charge can be difficult to establish in court. Don’t face DUI or DWI charges alone. Have an experienced lawyer by your side to help get you the best outcome.
Call an Ellicott City DUI Lawyer Today
Whether you had one too many and was charged with a DWI or a few too many and was charged with a DUI, you need an experienced Ellicott City defense attorney.
Being charged with a DUI/DWI can severely interfere with your life, from losing your job to revoking driving privileges to potential jail time. Don’t sit back and watch your future slowly dissipate.
Do something about it and call the Rice, Murtha & Psoras to help. We offer free consultations to talk to you about your case.