If you’re accused of drinking and driving or being under the influence of drugs behind the wheel, your freedom can be put at risk in Colorado. In fact, if you’ve been convicted previously, you could be looking at time in prison or hefty fines.
The state of Colorado takes these crimes very seriously, and there are laws in place to penalize you heavily if you make the same errors in judgment multiple times, even over the course of a decade. Because you could be facing time in prison, defending yourself with the help of your attorney is vital from the beginning.
Take for instance this case of a man who has been convicted of drunk driving five times in the state. He was recently arrested for running a red light, T-boning a sedan and fleeing the scene. The woman driving the other vehicle died in the crash, but the man didn’t stay at the scene. He had abandoned his truck in a school parking lot following the crash and was found walking down the sidewalk.
After the collision, it was determined that the man’s blood alcohol concentration was .13, close to twice the legal limit. His case became a felony drunk driving case because this was a fifth offense.
In August 2015, the state introduced the felony DUI rule, making it possible to place heavier penalties on those who offend multiple times. He recently pleaded guilty to all counts in his case, but the judge, who could not be sure of the man’s ability to stay sober, would not be lenient. He faced 24 years in prison for killing the woman, but the judge determined 14 was a fair punishment.
Source: The Gazette, “Repeat DUI offender gets 14 years in prison after fatal collision in Colorado Springs,” Lance Benzel, May 20, 2016