Union County, NC- Although North Carolina has some of the toughest DWI laws on the books, some lawmakers in the state think they could be tougher.
Last month, legislators the state House approved two laws, House Bill 31 and House Bill 32 with bipartisan support, a rare animal in an increasingly polarized political environment. Both bills sponsored by Rep. Darren Jackson (D.-Wake) will stiffen the state’s already strict DWI laws.
H.B. 32 addresses repeat drunk driving offenses and changes how such charges are prosecuted. Under current law, an individual has to be charged with a DWI four times over a period of ten years to be considered a felony. If H.B. 32 passes, a person with a third DWI offense within the past 10 years will be treated as felony, WRAL reported.
H.B. 31 changes rules for first-time DWI offenders when they get their driver’s license back. Current law allows first-offender to drive with a blood alcohol content of up to .04 for up to three years after their license is restored and an ignition interlock device is removed. H.B. 31 is a zero-tolerance law and would forbid a first-time DWI offender from having any alcohol in their system.
Both of these laws will move on to the Senate for a vote, according to WRAL.
A DWI in North Carolina is treated differently than other states and the penalties a person is facing are dictated by the level of offense. DWIs are rated on the scale from 1 to 5 with one being the worst and five being minor. The level of offense is in turn dictated by aggravating circumstances such as the offender’s blood alcohol concentration, number of DWI arrests, whether there was a child in the car or if the driver had a suspended or revoked license.
The severity of a DWI offender’s penalties is dictated by the Level of offense they are facing. North Carolina Judges have the discretion to sentence a DWI offender for one day in jail or up to three years in jail, depending on the level of their offense. Under current laws, prior DWI arrests within the past 7 years can and will be taken into account and most likely means a repeat offender will receive a harsh sentence.
If you have been charged with a DWI, you need to retain a North Carolina DWI attorney immediately. You have a number of crucial decisions you will need to make. Your attorney will help you make these important decisions and keep you from jeopardizing your case. With a DWI conviction, you could lose your freedom, your driver’s license and will have to dole out thousands of dollars in penalties and other associated costs.
The DWI attorneys at USAttorneys understand how to build a strong defense and is willing to work tirelessly on your case. Your attorney’s goals is to help minimize the possible consequences of DWI conviction. They understand what an effective defense looks like and will tirelessly work on your case so you have the best possible outcome and can avoid the harsh penalties that accompany a DWI conviction.