Recently, Governor Tom Wolf signed legislation which calls for harsher penalties for some DUI offenses.
The new laws cover three areas:
Third DUI Offenses
Third DUI offenses within a 10 year period will be graded as a felony if the driver:
- Refused to submit to a chemical test to determine their blood alcohol level
- Had a blood alcohol level of .16 or higher
- Was under the influence of a Schedule II or III controlled substance or had in his system any Schedule I controlled substance
- Had a minor under the age of 18 as a passenger in the vehicle
Fourth and Subsequent Offenses
If a driver had three or more DUIs in the past 10 years, the will be charged with a felony regardless of the level of DUI charged.
Driving While Suspended
If you are charged driving under suspension, when your license was originally suspended due to a DUI, the penalties for a second or subsequent offense have been increased. For a second offense, there is now a minimum of 90 days in jail and a $1,000 fine. For a third or subsequent offense, there is a mandatory 6 months in jail, a $2,500 fine, and this will be graded as a misdemeanor of the third degree.
Homicide by Vehicle
A Homicide by Vehicle charge is currently graded as a felony of the second degree and there is a mandatory minimum 3 year jail sentence for each victim. If the offender has is a prior DUI, the Homicide by vehicle is increased to a felony of the first degree and the conviction will carry an increased mandatory jail sentence of 5 years for each victim. If the offender has 2 or more prior DUI convictions, the homicide by vehicle conviction will carry a mandatory jail sentence of 7 years for each victim.
If you have been charged with an offense that falls under these categories, please call 1-866-MCSHANE now to get a free consultation. At The McShane Firm, we know the law. We have the experience. We want to help you.