The Criminal Case

The Criminal Case
DUI Punishment

The punishment associated with the criminal portion of a DUI/APC charge depends on whether the charge is filed in municipal or county court.  This site focuses on DUI/APC charges in county court, as municipal charges vary among cities. 

In county court, a misdemeanor DUI/APC is punishable by 10 days up to a maximum of one year in jail, and up to a $1,000 fine.  If found guilty by the court, the law also requires the person charged to undergo a certified Drug/Alcohol Evaluation and complete the evaluation’s recommended follow-up.   The follow-up requirements usually consist of a DUI school and a Victim Impact Panel.  Punishments often include other monetary assessments, community service and court costs. For a misdemeanor AGGRAVATED DUI, the law requires a minimum of one year of supervision, periodic drug/alcohol urinalysis testing, and the installation of an interlock breathalyzer device for a period of no less than 90 days.

The State may charge a person with a felony DUI/APC if that person was arrested within 10 years from the completion of any sentence or probation for a previous DUI/APC.  A first time felony DUI/APC is punishable by a maximum of five years in the Oklahoma Department of Corrections and up to a $2,500 fine.  A second felony DUI/APC is punishable by a maximum of 10 years in prison and up to a $5,000 fine.  A third or subsequent felony DUI/APC is punishable a maximum of 20 years in prison, and up to a $5,000 fine.  In addition to the fines and jail time, there are statutory instructions that include requirements of additional monetary assessments, community service, substance treatment and alcohol education.  These additional law requirements can be found below in the applicable statutes. 

Situations in which a first-time DUI can lead to a felony charge. 

A first-time DUI can lead to a felony charge in certain circumstances. These include driving intoxicated with a child in the car or while within 1,000 feet of a school. Also, a person who has been convicted of murder in the second degree or manslaughter in the first degree in which the death was caused by a driver with a breath or blood test result of .08 or above can be charged with felony DUI.

The Criminal DUI Process

Once a driver has been booked into jail, she or he must make a decision about getting released. There are various possibilities:

  • 1. The arrestee can post a cash bond to be released.

  • 2. A professional bail bondsman may be hired to post bond.

  • 3. An arrestee could be released on a Personal Recognizance Bond.

  • 4. An arrestee could be released as part of a Pre-Trial Release Program.

  • 5. The accused may choose to remain jail because posting bond is not affordable.

If a person posts a bond through a bondsman or cash bond, he or she will most likely not qualify for court appointed counsel.  After posting a bond, the person charged will be required to appear in court for an arraignment hearing.  This hearing is a time for the judge to provide the formal criminal charges, allow the individual to remain on the bond posted set a first court date, and make any other orders in her or his discretion.

The process following the arraignment varies depending on whether a person is charged with a misdemeanor or felony.  Regardless, it is most efficient and often ordered by the judge for an attorney to be hired by the first court date. 

The criminal process begins with the initial police contact and continues all the way through the judicial process.  Throughout this process, there are many issues a criminal defense attorney will examine to ensure a client’s rights were honored and are protected. 

Ultimately, once charged, the individual will have to make the decision whether to have a jury trial, non-jury trial or enter a plea agreement.  A jury trial is a trial before members of the defendant’s community. The jury will decide whether the State has proven beyond a reasonable doubt that the charged is guilty.  The jury must be unanimous in its decision.  In Oklahoma, a misdemeanor jury is composed of six jurors and a felony jury is composed of 12 jurors.  In a non-jury trial the judge makes the decision.  The prosecutor must also agree to a non-jury trial, because like the defendant, the State also has a right to a jury trial. A plea agreement occurs when the defendant enters a plea of guilt to the court and is sentenced without a trial.

If a person is found guilty of DUI/APC, then the result will involve the criminal implications previously addressed.

 

DUI DEFENDER - (405) 310-2515

DUI Attorney in Oklahoma City

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Serving Oklahoma City and the Surrounding Areas.

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