OUI Defense Attorney in Essex County
Operating under the influence of alcohol, known as OUI in Massachusetts, and DUI, and DWI in other states, is a criminal offense. When you or a loved one is charged with an OUI, it is often the first time you are involved with the criminal justice system in Massachusetts. Aprodu | Conley understands the fear and hesitancy that a person experiences when arrested for an OUI and knows what it takes to navigate a person through this charge.
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An OUI investigation generally begins with a traffic stop. A police officer is required to have a valid reason for stopping your vehicle, otherwise any evidence of an OUI could be suppressed. After the initial stop, the officer usually requests that you take field sobriety tests which are designed to measure your level of intoxication. You are not required by law to take these tests.
If your performance leads the arresting officer to believe that your driving is impaired by either alcohol or drugs, you will likely be arrested. Upon your arrest you may be asked to take a breathalyzer test to measure your blood alcohol content ("BAC"). Because Massachusetts has an implied consent law, refusing this test could lead to the suspension of your driving license. If you score a BAC of 0.08% or above, the law will presume that you were impaired.
If you are charged with an OUI, you will be given a date to appear in court. The lawyers at Aprodu | Conley are experienced with OUIs and know what it takes to fight the case from your first appearance in court, all the way through trial and beyond. There are a number of different kinds of OUI.
If you are charged with an OUI for the first time, it is a misdemeanor criminal offense. You can be charged with an OUI for being impaired by alcohol, or an illegal or legal drug or narcotic. Massachusetts takes OUI charges very seriously, and even a first offense carries a number of potential consequences, including fines, classes, probation, loss of driving privileges, and even incarceration.
Penalties for a 2nd OUI Offense
If you have previously admitted to an OUI charge, whether convicted or not, a subsequent OUI has harsher potential penalties. A previous OUI could be in Massachusetts, or in any other state. Although a second offense OUI is still a misdemeanor offense, the potential penalties increase, and can often include inpatient programs if convicted.
Penalties for a Felony OUI Offense
There are a few circumstances where an OUI can become a felony offense, and thus carries significantly more serious penalties and collateral consequences. These include third or subsequent OUI, OUI causing serious bodily injury, or OUI manslaughter, where someone died as a result of an OUI.
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