Hollywood, CA- Far too many Americans engage in the bad habit of drinking and driving. Nationally, the FBI estimates that nearly 1.5 million people are arrested for DUI each year. All of these drivers are putting other motorists at risk but, sadly, some Californians aren’t just risking their lives, they are risking the lives of their children. Driving drunk with a child in your car is dangerous, wrong and will entail some troubling consequences. Our team of DUI lawyers in California will discuss some facts and outline some of the consequences you face if convicted of DUI with a minor child.
It should be obvious why a parent or guardian should never get behind the wheel after they have been drinking, but what is apparent to a sober mind is not always clear to an impaired mind. There are penalty enhancements if you are charged with a DUI involving child endangerment, so we’ll take a look at why first.
A 2013 study, reported by Reuters, found that between 2001 and 2010, 2,344 children aged 15 years or younger were killed in drunk driving accidents. The majority of those accidents, 65 percent, were caused by a parent and in thirty percent of those crashes, the children affected were not properly restrained. For those reasons, California and 46 other states have penalty enhancements for people who have a minor child in their vehicle.
Under California Penal Code Section 273(a), if you are charged with your first DUI and had a minor child (a child under the age of 14) in your car, you could be sentenced up to six months in jail with penalty enhancement of 48 hours. When the minor is under the age of 14, you may also face a separate charge of child endangerment which carries a minimum of one year for a misdemeanor and two to six years for felony child endangerment.
There are additional penalties, on top of the fines, a person convicted of a DUI with a child endangerment enhancement will be required to participate in at least one year of less than one year of child abuser’s treatment counseling program, according to California Penal Code Section 273(a) published by Find Law.
Los Angeles County prosecutors aggressively go after DUI offenders who drive with minor children in their vehicles. If you are facing such a charge, you’ll need an equally aggressive DUI lawyer from LA County working on your defense strategy. USAttorneys urges you to set up a consultation today to get their advice.
Our team of DUI lawyers in Hollywood will work tirelessly on your defense and use their expertise to minimize the severe consequences you are facing. It’s critical you act soon and enlist one of our devoted to each of their clients and take the steps necessary to mitigate the consequences of DUI charge. USAttorneys can help you get in touch with a skilled litigator who will be on your side through all stages of your case.