Second Offense DUI Charges in Culpeper County

In Culpeper County, Virginia, second DUI offenses are misdemeanors which means that they’re all tried in the Culpeper County General District Court unless there is an appeal of an adverse verdict, in which case they would be heard in Circuit Court. These charges are treated even more seriously than first DUI charges and you will face even more serious penalties, making it important that a Culpeper second DUI lawyer is contacted as soon as possible.

A DUI lawyer in Culpeper can look at the specific evidence against you and help build the strongest possible defense. To learn more call and schedule a consultation today.

How 2nd Offense DUI Charges Are Handled

Second DUI offenses are handled very seriously and are in fact prosecuted more vigorously than first offenses. Whereas it will occasionally be the case that there will be some kind of reduced non-DUI charge that will result from a first time DUI, it is virtually unheard of for that to happen with a second offense.

Also, there are mandatory penalties which are required by law if a person is convicted and because it’s a second offense, depending on the facts of the case, there’s always a possibility that a judge can impose more severe penalties than the minimums required by law, including increased fines or increased jail sentences. Prosecutors and the court in most cases view a second offense defendant as someone who is dangerous and potentially has an alcohol problem, making it important that you consult with a second DUI lawyer in Culpeper as soon as possible after you are charged.

Penalties For a Second DUI Offense

The penalties for second offense DUI vary depending upon whether the previous DUI was within the last five years or within the last ten years. If it was within the last five years there is a mandatory fine of $500, there is a possible jail sentence of up to a year in jail of which 20 days are mandatory. There is a three-year loss of license (a restricted license can be asked for after a year) and completion of the VASAP program along with ignition interlock.

If the charge is a second within ten years it’s slightly less serious but it’s still a $500 fine and potential of a year in jail but only 10 days are mandatory. There is a three-year loss of license, however, an individual can petition for a restricted license after four months. Of course, they will still have to complete the VASAP program and have an ignition interlock on their vehicle.

Additionally, there is virtually never a diversion program or any kind of probation on a second offense DUI. If there is any deal to be offered on a second offense DUI, at best it would be to have it treated as a DUI first.

For a second offense DUI, as with any DUI, there are always constitutional issues, factual issues, and technical issues that are common. However on a second offense DUI the added element is that the government must prove there has been a previous DUI conviction that was either in Virginia or if the previous conviction is in another state, it has to be under what is called a substantially similar statute.

Building a Defense

For a second offense DUI, as with any DUI, there are always constitutional issues, factual issues, and technical issues that are common. However on a second offense DUI the added element is that the government must prove there has been a previous DUI conviction that was either in Virginia or if the previous conviction is in another state, it has to be under what is called a substantially similar statute.

In every DUI second or subsequent case there has to be an analysis of the statute the defendant was convicted under in the foreign state to determine whether they were substantially similar. There are a number of technicalities and loopholes which can be found in the differences between the two statutes which will cause the other statute to not be considered substantially similar. If that is the case, then the person can still be convicted of a DUI first offense, but they cannot be convicted of DUI second offense.

Your Driver’s License After a Second Offense DUI in Culpeper

Upon being charged with a DUI second offense, the defendant’s driver’s license is administratively suspended, without a hearing, for 60 days or until the time of trial, whichever is shorter.  This suspension can, however, be overturned by a judge if the court finds there was no probable cause for the arrest.

On conviction of a second offense Culpeper County DUI charge, the drivers’ license will be suspended for a period of three years. If it is a second within ten offense you’ll be able to get a restricted drivers’ license after four months if the court approves. If it is a second within five offense then you will not be able to petition for restricted license until a year has passed.

Importance of Consulting With a Culpeper Second Offense DUI Lawyer

Due to the increased penalties and significant impact a second DUI charge can have on your life, it is important you consult with a Culpeper second offense DUI lawyer as soon as possible to begin building your defense. Call today to schedule your free consultation.

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