DUI with a Minor in the Car in Colorado Springs
Arrested for a DUI with Children in the Car
A DUI arrest is a serious matter under any circumstances, but with a minor in the car, it can have particularly devastating consequences in Colorado. If the child is under the age of 16, the driver will be facing added charges of child abuse. If the vehicle is involved in an accident and the child suffers any injuries, the charges are likely to be upgraded to a felony, carry harsher potential penalties such as incarceration in the Colorado Department of Corrections and fines as much as $750,000.
If you have been arrested or charged with DUI and child abuse as a result of having a minor in the vehicle, it is vital to seek knowledgeable legal representation as soon as possible after your arrest. The importance of fighting such serious charges cannot be overstated, and you will need a dedicated legal advocate with a history of success in defending DUI cases by your side, fighting for you.
Tim Bussey with The Bussey Law Firm, P.C. has been practicing criminal law since 1991. He has been a prosecutor, defense attorney, Assistant District Attorney, and active duty Judge Advocate with the U.S. Air Force. He has been named among Colorado Super Lawyers® and awarded 10.0 Superb Rating on Avvo and the Avvo Clients' Choice Award for DUI and DWI.
Consequences of DUI with a Minor in the Car in Colorado Springs
When a driver is charged with DUI with a child in the vehicle, child abuse is also typically charged, even when the child is properly strapped in the vehicle and otherwise safe and uninjured – due to the danger to the child posed by an alcohol-impaired driver. This aggravating factor will likely be taken into consideration by the judge at sentencing.
Under state law, the crime of criminally negligent child abuse occurs when an adult, with criminal negligence:
- Causes injury to the life or health of a child;
- Permits a child to be unreasonably placed in a situation that poses threat of injury to the life or health of the child; or
- Engages in a pattern of conduct that results in mistreatment, malnourishment, lack of medical care, cruel punishment, or an accumulation of injuries that result in serious bodily injury to or the death of a child.
When a child is injured in a Colorado Springs DUI accident, charges of felony child abuse will likely be filed if the injuries constitute serious bodily injury. This offense is defined as knowingly or recklessly committing an act that causes serious bodily injury or death to a child under the age of 16. If serious bodily injury to the child comes about in a DUI accident, child abuse will likely be charged as a Class 3 felony, with penalties of 10 to 32 years in prison and/or $3,000 to $750,000 in fines. If the child is killed in the accident, it is charged as a Class 2 felony, carrying penalties of 16 to 48 years in prison and/or $5,000 to $1,000,000 in fines.
Contact a Dedicated Colorado Springs DUI Child Endangerment Lawyer
If you are facing charges of DUI with a minor in the car, contact The Bussey Law Firm, P.C. in Colorado Springs as soon as possible. It is critical that you have aggressive defense counsel on your side to fight these serious charges. We can be reached at (719) 475-2555.