Recently, Alabama.com reported a man dressed as a clown had been picked up in Alabama for driving his car while under the influence. The man was driving an SUV and a motorist reported him to the police because it appeared the driver was weaving his vehicle. The police caught up with the SUV and a deputy was surprised to discover the driver had a clown suit on. The driver was suspected of driving while impaired and was taken into custody. Alabama.com reported the deputy said "driving drunk is no laughing matter, but it's not every day someone dressed as a clown is booked into jail."
For anyone who is arrested for DUI, it is important to realize that a DUI is very serious. Even a first offense is a big deal which can have a profound impact on a person's life. Getting DUI defense help is essential, as you want to do everything possible to try to avoid being convicted and facing penalties that could change your life.
A First Offense DUI Has Serious Consequences
A first offense DUI needs to be taken very seriously. If you are convicted of driving under the influence, even without any past convictions, the consequences can include:
- A maximum of one year imprisonment in a municipal or county jail. There is no mandatory minimum sentence of jail time for a first conviction.
- A fine totaling between $500 and $2,000.
- An additional $100 fine which must be paid to fund the Impaired Drivers Trust Fund.
- A mandatory suspension of your driver's license for a period of 90 days.
- Required attendance at DUI school.
Your first conviction is also going to show up on background checks, which can have an impact on employment opportunities as well as college admissions or other attempts to further your education. If you need to get a job that requires a clean driving record, your conviction is going to make that impossible. Your insurance costs are also going to be a lot higher if you have a DUI conviction on your record, even if you have only committed the offense one time in the past.
Not only can a first offense DUI result in serious consequences for your first conviction, but it can also impact future criminal proceedings against you. If you are ever arrested for impaired driving again, you could find yourself facing much more serious consequences because of the fact you already have a record. A second conviction leads to a mandatory 48-hour minimum jail sentence or a mandatory 24 hours of community service, while a third conviction results in a mandatory 60-day period of imprisonment.
You cannot afford to just accept that a DUI arrest is going to lead to a first conviction. You should explore defense options and find ways to try to reduce the charges or avoid being found guilty of driving under the influence.
Contact Barclay Law at 866-584-1023 or visit http://www.jmbarclaylaw.com to schedule a consultation with a criminal defense lawyer in Birmingham. Serving South Side, Titusville, Red Mountain, Woodlawn, Ensley and surrounding areas.