Most people assume that multiple drunk-driving convictions results in progressively more serious charges. In most states, that is indeed the case, but in Colorado and a handful of other states, it is possible for an individual to not face felony DUI charges even after multiple DUI convictions. If a bill currently under consideration in the House is passed, though, that would change.
Under the proposal, drivers could face felony charges for DUI if they have three prior offenses, though in cases where there are aggravating factors, felony charges could be issued after only two convictions. There have been previous attempts to pass similar measures in the past, but they have been rejected largely due to concerns about costs. There are apparently also concerns that the bill puts a punitive focus on repeat offenders rather than focusing on addiction treatment.
As we wrote in a recent post, for repeat DUI offenders, the goal of criminal defense is primarily to minimize the consequences of charges. By the time a motorist has been convicted of DUI two or three times, prosecutors aren’t nearly as likely to show lenience as they sometimes are with first-time offenders. To protect oneself, it is critical to have an understanding and command of the criminal process, the standards involved in proving DUI, and the factors judges use when issuing sentences in these cases.
Repeat offenders can be sure that if they work with our firm, we’ll help them build the best possible case and that we’ll zealously advocate for them in court. Though we can’t guarantee a particular outcome in any given case, we do guarantee commitment to the rights and interests of our clients.
Source: thedenverchannel.com, “House committee approves bill to establish Colorado’s first felony drunk driving law,” John Ferrugia & Sandra Barry, Feb. 5, 2015.