A DUI charge is a very serious crime in the state of Indiana, especially when it involves an accident. Penalties commonly include prison time as well as other consequences, such as having your license suspended or revoked. If you have been charged with a DUI involving an accident, contact the Indianapolis DUI lawyers with Hessler Law at (317) 886-8800 for a free consultation. We will work tirelessly to tell your side of the story and keep your record clean.
In many instances, people are charged with driving under the influence when the surrounding circumstances do not warrant an accusation. As an example, a person may be pulled over for no probable cause and then be arrested for drunk driving. Someone might also be arrested for a DUI without being read their Miranda rights. When these rights violations occur, a skilled Indianapolis OWI attorney can argue in court to have your case thrown.
Defining DUIs Involving Accidents
In Indiana, driving under the influence is defined as operating any motorized vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) above the legal limit of .08%. For commercial drivers, the legal limit is .04% and for those under the age of 21, the legal limit is .02%. Under the Operating While Intoxicated (OWI) law, the state of Indiana lists two separate crimes associated with driving under the influence. These are as follows:
- Driving under the influence as determined by the results of a BAC test given at the time of arrest
- Driving under the influence as determined by physical evidence of intoxication, such as swerving or driving recklessly
Separating the crime in this way is done because certain substances cannot be detected by a BAC test. If officers were not allowed to make arrests based on physical evidence alone, many people would get away with driving under the influence of prescription drugs, narcotics, and other substances.
In DUI cases, one aggravating factor is causing or being involved in an accident. An aggravating factor is any element in a case that makes the crime more serious. An accident may involve hitting a person, property, or another vehicle. This factor being present typically leads to harsher penalties.
Penalties for DUIs Involving Accidents
While a typical DUI is classified as a misdemeanor, one involving an accident is automatically filed as a felony. Additionally, penalties for a DUI involving an accident can be split into two categories. The first is administrative suspension and involves a license suspension or revocation. The license suspension period for a DUI involving an accident is between 2 and 5 years. This suspension period will likely be extended if you refuse a BAC test during your arrest. Don’t delay retaining the legal services from an experienced Indianapolis DUI lawyer if you are facing similar consequences.
The other penalty category involves time served in custody. Criminal sentencing for driving under the influence when an accident is involved includes, but is not limited to:
- Up to 8 years in state prison
How an Indianapolis DUI Lawyer Can Best Defend You in the Court of Law
With the help of an experienced Indianapolis DUI lawyer, there are a number of defenses that can be used to get your charges wiped out. When you are arrested, for example, police officers are required to read you your Miranda rights, which include the right to remain silent and the right to have a lawyer present during any interviewing. If it can be proven that you were not read your rights at the time of your arrest, your charges can be dismissed easily in court. Another common defense in DUI cases is proving that there was not probable cause for your arrest. An officer is required by law to have a good reason for making an arrest. Without it, the arrest is inadmissible.
If you or a loved one has been charged with a Indiana DUI involving an accident, contact the Indiana criminal defense lawyers at Hessler Law at (317) 886-8800 today. Our attorneys will listen to your side of the story and work tirelessly to get your charges reduced or dismissed, if possible.