Most jurisdictions classify standard DUI charges as misdemeanors, but some circumstances can raise charges to felony levels. A felony DUI conviction carries more severe penalties and more enduring consequences than a misdemeanor does. Rules differ on what constitutes felony DUI, and clients should ask DUI Attorneys in Charleston for advice. Below is additional information on case circumstances that can bring about felony level DUI charges.
All jurisdictions currently have a per se DUI rule of .08%. The rules state that, if a motorist has a .08 or higher BAC, West Virginia assumes the person’s intoxication according to state statutes. The state commonly elevates DUI to felony level if chemical testing reveals that a driver’s BAC is above a certain level (typically .16%), and West Virginia imposes harsher punishments for those with high BAC.
The state may raise a DUI charge to felony status if the at-fault driver causes another person bodily harm. In some cases, prosecutors have leeway to decide whether or not to prosecute bodily injury DUI cases as felonies or misdemeanors. In some areas, prosecutors must prove that the at-fault party caused the injury. If someone runs into the DUI driver and is injured, the DUI driver didn’t cause the harm, and the charge will remain a misdemeanor.
DUI While A License Is Revoked, Suspended Or Restricted
Most jurisdictions in West Virginia make DUI a felony if it happens while an offender has a revoked, suspended or restricted driver’s license. DUI Attorneys in Charleston can tell clients more about West Virginia’s laws in this regard.
Call A Local DUI Lawyer
If a person is arrested for driving under the influence, they should consider hiring DUI Attorneys in Charleston. An attorney who focuses on DUI cases will evaluate all evidence in the case, including the methodology and results of chemical and field sobriety testing, to ensure that the client’s legal rights are safeguarded. It is important to talk to a lawyer who’s familiar with West Virginia’s DUI laws. Most DUI Attorneys in Charleston offer no-obligation initial consultations, and a client’s first step should be to call a local lawyer.