Colorado Springs Driving Under the Influence (DUI) lawyer Patterson Weaver provides knowledgeable and experienced legal representation to people charged with DUI in El Paso County. If you are charged with a DUI, whether as first-time DUI or a subsequent offense, Colorado Springs DUI lawyer Patterson Weaver works hard to obtain the most favorable outcome possible in every case. Although penalties are stiffer for subsequent charges, it is extremely important to fight DUI charges on even first offenses.First-Time DUI
You can be charged with DUI under C.R.S. 42-4-1301(1)(f) if you are caught driving a car or other vehicle when you have consumed alcohol or one or more drugs (or a combination of alcohol and one or more drugs), and it affects you to a degree that you are substantially incapable of safely operating a motor vehicle. One is substantially incapable of safely operating a motor vehicle due to drugs or alcohol or both when they are unable either physically or mentally of using clear judgment, sufficient physical control, or due care in the safe operation of the vehicle. In other words, DUI occurs if somebody tries to drive after consuming a substance that has made them incapable of safely driving.
Alternatively, you can be charged with DUI per se. This means that if you have a blood alcohol content that is over .08 within two hours of driving, you can be found guilty of drunk driving per se. You will be asked to take a breath or blood test if you are suspected of drunk driving. Some people assume that a conviction is assured if they were tested and the test came back with a .08 reading or higher. However, there are ways an experienced DUI Attorney can sometimes challenge chemical tests. Sometimes appropriate procedures were not followed. In other cases, there may have been mechanical issues. In still other cases, an attorney can challenge the entire stop as a violation of the defendant's Fourth Amendment rights and try to get evidence obtained in the stop suppressed.Driving While Ability Impaired by Alcohol
A lesser included charge of DUI is a charge for Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI). Even if your impairment did not get to the point of DUI, you can still be guilty of DWAI. This means that you were driving a car when you had consumed alcohol or one or more drugs, or a combination of these, and it affected you even to the slightest degree so that you were less able than you ordinarily would have been, physically or mentally or both, to use good judgment and exert appropriate care to safely drive.
Simply put, you can be convicted of DWAI if you consumed alcohol or drugs that made you less capable than usual of safely operating your car. In other words, if you ability to operate a car is normally 100, and you have a drink and your ability can now be rated at 99.9, you are technically guilty of DWAI. While there is no per se limit for DWAI over which you would be immediately considered drunk, generally the presumption is that if your blood alcohol content was 0.05-0.08, you were driving while your ability was impaired.Penalties
A DUI conviction can result in significant penalties. If your blood alcohol content was above 0.20, you must serve at least 10 days in jail or a work release program. A DUI conviction can result in a maximum of one year in jail with another year suspended. Additionally, a fine of up to $1,500 and a community service requirement may be imposed. You may be required to attend alcohol education or treatment classes and therapy. You will get points against your license. If you get a DWAI conviction, you can be sentenced to up to 180 days in jail.
If you are put on probation for a first-time DUI conviction, certain conditions will be imposed. A judge can require you to abstain from consuming alcohol or drugs and to maintain sobriety, in addition to other standard probation terms. Your abstinence may be monitored.Consult an Experienced Colorado Springs Lawyer
Whether you are charged with a first-time DUI or DWAI in Colorado Springs, you should retain an experienced criminal defense attorney. The consequences can seriously affect your future. Call Colorado Springs DUI attorney Patterson Weaver at (719) 264-9858 or use our online form to set up an appointment with Patterson. Depending on the case, Patterson Weaver Law also represents drivers in Pueblo, Monument, Manitou Springs, Fountain, Security-Widefield, Palmer Lake, Old Colorado City, Woodland Park, Divide, Cripple Creek, Fairplay, Salida, Buena Vista, Westcliffe, Silver Cliff, Canon City, and Castle Rock, as well as other areas of El Paso, Chaffee, Pueblo, Teller, Lincoln, and Park Counties.