Felony DUI

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Escondido Felony DUI Attorney

Defending Against Serious Driving Under the Influence Charges in Carlsbad, Oceanside, Poway, Rancho Bernardo, San Marcos, and Vista

In many cases, a driving under the influence offense (DUI) is a misdemeanor. However, some situations exist in which it is a felony. These circumstances include getting a fourth or subsequent DUI charge, having a previous felony DUI conviction, causing injury, or causing death. Felonies are the most serious crimes in California. As such, they carry extremely harsh penalties. A conviction could result in years in prison, fines, and/or driver’s license revocation. Still, if you have been charged with a felony DUI, do not lose hope in your case. Options may be available to fight the allegations and pursue a favorable outcome. 

At Sterger Law Group, we are dedicated to protecting the rights and futures of our clients. Our felony DUI lawyer in Escondido has years of legal experience and has helped clients through complex cases. We leverage our knowledge and skills to build aggressive defense strategies. When you hire us, you’ll have a zealous advocate on your side pursuing available legal avenues to seek an optimal result on your behalf. We can work to resolve your matter outside the courtroom by negotiating with the prosecutor. Still, we will also be prepared to take your case to trial if necessary.

Schedule a free consultation with our Escondido felony DUI attorney by calling us at (760) 280-7900 or contacting us online today.

When Does a DUI Become a Felony?

A DUI can become a felony when certain aggravating factors are present. Aggravating factors are things that make a crime worse.

The situations in which a DUI can be a felony in California include the following:

  • Fourth or subsequent DUI: If you are charged with driving under the influence and have three or more prior DUI convictions within 10 years, the most recent violation will be a felony.
  • Prior felony DUI conviction: A second or subsequent DUI offense can be charged as a felony if your prior conviction was for a felony DUI. It does not matter how long in the past the previous violation occurred or whether the current offense involves no aggravating factors.
  • DUI causing injury: Regardless of whether this is your first, second, third, or subsequent DUI violation, if you engaged in a forbidden or negligent act and caused injury to someone other than yourself, you face a felony charge. 
  • DUI causing death: You could be charged with felony DUI if you were driving while intoxicated and unlawfully killed another person. If you acted without gross negligence, the offense is vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated. If you acted with gross negligence, it’s gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated.

You might be feeling anxious, worried, or frightened about being charged with a felony-level DUI offense in Escondido. Our attorney is here to identify paths forward in your case.

What Are the Penalties for a Felony DUI?

The potential punishments that can be imposed for a felony DUI depend on the charges levied and the particulars of the situation.

Below are possible penalties for certain violations:

  • Fourth or subsequent DUI: 
    • 16 months or 2 or 3 years in prison 
    • $390 to $1,000 in fines
    • Habitual Traffic Offender designation
    • Driver’s license revocation for 4 years
  • DUI causing injury:
    • Up to 4 years in prison
    • Up to $5,000 in fines
    • Habitual Traffic Offender designation
    • Driver’s license revocation for 5 years
  • Vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated:
    • 16 months or 2 or 4 years in prison
    • Up to $10,000 in fines
  • Gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated:
    • 4, 6, or 10 years in prison 
    • Up to $10,000 in fines

Being charged with a crime is not the same as being convicted. You cannot face penalties unless the prosecutor can prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Our Escondido felony DUI lawyer can conduct a comprehensive review of the facts to highlight weaknesses in proof and pursue a just outcome.

Schedule a Free Consultation Today

A criminal defense attorney can be instrumental in seeking to avoid or minimize the penalties for a felony DUI. No matter the charges you’re facing, reach out to Sterger Law Group to discuss your case. 

Speak with us by calling (760) 280-7900 or submitting an online contact form today.

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