Drivers under the influence of alcohol or drugs can cause accidents, injuries, and even death. In North Carolina, driving while impaired (DWI) is a serious offense. If you are caught driving with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08% or above or while under the influence of drugs, you could face penalties including fines, jail time, license suspension, and more. Learn more about the penalties for DWI in North Carolina and how you can fight these charges if they have been unfairly applied to you.
What is Considered a DWI in North Carolina?
DWI stands for “driving while impaired.” In North Carolina, DWI is a criminal offense that occurs when a person operates a motor vehicle while impaired by alcohol or drugs. If a person is charged with DWI, they may face consequences such as jail time, fines, and the loss of their driver’s license.
What’s the Difference Between DWI and DUI in North Carolina?
In North Carolina, the difference between the two is that DWI is a crime that requires proof of impairment, while DUI is a crime that requires proof of intoxication. The penalties for both crimes are similar, but DWI carries a higher maximum jail sentence.
What are the Penalties for a DWI Conviction in North Carolina?
In North Carolina, the penalties for a DWI conviction can be quite severe. If there is an aggravating factor present, such as impaired driving, the sentence can be increased. For a first offense, the penalty can range from a revocation of your license to a level 5 DWI, which carries a sentence of up to 120 days in jail. If you are convicted of a DWI, the state may also revoke your license and impose a fine.
Jail Time and Fines
The North Carolina DWI law has five levels of DWI, each with its own set of aggravating factors that can increase the jail time and fines for a DWI conviction. The minimum jail time for a Level V DWI is 24 hours, while the maximum jail time for a Level I DWI is 2 years. The penalty for a Level V DWI is $200, while the penalty for a Level I DWI is $4,000.
A North Carolina DWI can lead to a license suspension. The North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles can revoke or suspend your license if you’re convicted of a DWI. For a first-time DWI offense, your driver’s license will be suspended or revoked for a year. For a second-time DWI conviction, your license will be suspended or revoked for 4 years. For your third DWI, you’ll permanently lose your license.
North Carolina’s Underage DWI Laws
In North Carolina, it is against the law to drive while impaired (DWI). If you are convicted of a DWI, your driver’s license will be automatically revoked for at least one year. If you are under 21 years old and charged with a DWI, your driver’s license will be automatically revoked for at least 30 days pre-trial.
Possible Defenses Against DWI Charges
There are, however, a few possible defenses against DWI charges in North Carolina. One is that the arresting officer did not have probable cause to stop your vehicle in the first place. If the officer did not have a valid reason for stopping you, any evidence of intoxication that was discovered as a result of the stop may be considered invalid and unable to be used against you in court.
Another possible defense is that the results of your breath or blood test were inaccurate. This can happen if the test was not administered correctly or if the machine itself was not calibrated properly. If there is reason to believe that your test results were inaccurate, your attorney may be able to get them thrown out as evidence.
Contact a North Carolina DWI Lawyer
A DWI charge is a serious offense with potentially severe consequences. If you have been charged with DWI in North Carolina, it is important to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney who has experience defending people against DWI charges.
If you have been charged with a DWI, it is important to contact an lawyer who can defend you against those DWI charges as soon as possible. As you see, a DWI conviction can have serious consequences, and an experienced lawyer like Dewey P. Brinkley can help you navigate the legal process and protect your rights. He can also help you understand the charges against you and develop a defense strategy. Contact the Law Office of Dewey P. Brinkley at (919) 832-0307 or by using the online form.