Punishments for a Felony DUI Charge in Colorado
Colorado’s DUI laws can be difficult to understand as they differ slightly from some other U.S. states’ laws. The Centennial State has two DUI laws:
• Driving Under the Influence (DUI): This is enforced when the driver’s blood alcohol content (BAC) measures 0.08% or higher.
• Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI): This is enforced when the driver’s BAC measures 0.05% or higher, but is below 0.08%.
The Penalties for a DUI Charge in Colorado
The DUI penalty you receive in Colorado will depend on whether this is your first DUI offence or not. The following is a guide to DUI offenses throughout the state.
• 1st Offense: Up to one year in jail. Fines and penalties up to $1,500. Nine months license suspension. 48-96 public service hours.
• 2nd Offense: Up to one year in jail, with a 10 day minimum. Fines and penalties up to $1,500. One year license suspension. 56-112 public service hours. An Interlock Ignition Device (IID) will be required in your vehicle.
• 3rd Offence: Up to one year in jail, with a 60 day minimum. Fines and penalties up to $1,500. Two years license suspension. 60-120 public service hours. An IID will be required in your vehicle.
The Centennial State has now eliminated the option that an offender may be released with the proviso that he or she wears an ankle bracelet. This means, if convicted, the only options are to serve the allocated jail time or to apply for a work release program.
When a DUI Becomes a Felony Offence
Unlike some states, Colorado has no look back period. This means even if your first DUI was 20 years ago, it still counts. A first, second and third offence DUI is considered a misdemeanor crime in Colorado. However, after a fourth or subsequent DUI offence, this becomes a felony crime. This means it is punishable by up to 6 years in jail and a fine up to $500,000.
DUI Defense Options
If you have been charged with a DUI in Colorado, you have several defense options. You can plead guilty, not guilty, or plead no contest (this means you are entering a guilty plea that you do not admit to). Whichever charge you decide on, it is important to hire an experienced DUI lawyer, so that some of the likely charges may be reduced.
If you have been charged with a felony DUI in Colorado, you may be feeling overwhelmed and uncertain of what to expect. Contact out team at The Bussey Law Firm, P.C. and let us explain how we can help you achieve your objectives. We can be reached at (719) 475-2555.