Drunk Driving: First Offense
With Thanksgiving and winter breaks approaching and many young people working and crowding our local roads late at night, I get a lot of questions about first-time drunk driving offenders. Here in PA, anyone 21 years of age and older are unable to drive with a BAC above .08%. If you are pulled over for drunk driving with a BAC over .08%, there is a good chance you will be charged with driving under the influence of alcohol.
To determine a BAC level, police authorities will generally perform a Breathalyzer test after they have asked you to perform the standard field sobriety test. You may also be asked to submit to a blood or urine test once arrested and are back at the police station or taken to a hospital. In PA, drivers are required to perform at least one chemical test. If you refuse, you can have your license suspended for up to a year. If a driver refuses a second separate time, the suspension can be increased to as much as 18 months. If you have been arrested for drunk driving in Pittsburgh, it is important to understand the potential consequences.
For a first time DUI, you can go to jail, but it is not likely. You may also pay fines of up to $300; however, the fine amounts depend on your BAC level, as there are three different levels or “tiers” with .16% being the highest. If you refuse a blood, breath, or urine test, and you are convicted of DUI, you can be given an interlock ignition device to be used for one year on your vehicle. Second time offenses and higher BAC offenses will always be worse than initial offenses. It is important to know that PA does not offer a reduced DUI sentenced, known in other states as a “wet and reckless” offense.
It is therefore imperative that, if you have been arrested for DUI, you acquire an attorney who is successful in DUI defense. Pittsburgh DUI lawyer Gary Gerson has been helping people charged with driving under the influence in Pittsburgh for more than twenty-five years. Call The Law Offices of Gary E. Gerson today at 412-219-6875 if you have been arrested for DUI and let Attorney Gerson walk you through the seemingly relentless criminal justice process. It could be the difference losing everything and regaining your personal freedom. Call today.