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The Consequences of a DWI Conviction in Woodbury

Minnesota is a zero-tolerance DWI state. This means you can face DWI Conviction in Woodbury if you are impaired by alcohol or drugs regardless of your BAC. However, if your BAC is above the legal limit, you face conviction even if unimpaired.

Penalties grow increasingly harsher with repeat offenses. Further, causing an injury accident due to DWI may result in felony charges for even first-time offenders.

Woodbury law established four levels of DWI. The first three are misdemeanors, while the fourth level constitutes a felony.

Woodbury First Offense DWI Penalties

First-time DWI offenders face a misdemeanor charge, as do those with DWI violations over ten years in the past. However, first-time offenders may face felony criminal vehicular operation charges if they cause substantial, grievous, or fatal injuries.

Provided no one has been hurt, a first-time DWI Conviction in Woodbury carries the following consequences:

  • Up to 90 days in jail but there is no minimum. A BAC above .20 increases the maximum to one year in jail.
  • A fine of up to $1,000 plus court costs. A BAC over .20 raises the maximum fine to $3,000.
  • Test refusals result in an automatic 1-year license revocation.  Driving privileges may be restored during this time if you agree to install an ignition interlock device.

To reinstate a revoked license, you must pay a license reinstatement fee of $680 plus an $18.50 application fee.  Also, you must show proof of insurance through a Woodbury SR22-qualified policy.

Woodbury Second Offense DWI Penalties

Second-offense DWIs are also charged as a misdemeanor. Misdemeanor convictions from over ten years ago are excluded, so you may be eligible for a misdemeanor classification even if you have multiple previous DUIs. However, any prior felony DWI Conviction in Woodbury requires the state to charge the case as a felony.

A second offense DWI charge carries the following penalties:

  • Up to 90 days in jail. There is no minimum jail time. However, those with a BAC over .20% face incarceration for up to one year.
  • A fine of up to $1,000 plus court costs. For a BAC over .20%, the maximum fine increases to $3,000.
  • Increased penalties apply to extreme DWIs and DWIs with a child in the vehicle
  • Test refusals result in an automatic 1-year license revocation. Agreeing to an ignition interlock device allows you to drive during the revocation period.

To reinstate a revoked license, you must pay a license reinstatement fee of $680 plus an $18.50 application fee.  Also, you must show proof of insurance through a Minnesota SR22-qualified policy.

Woodbury Third Offense DWI Penalties

A third offense DWI charge carries the following penalties:

  • Up to one year jail time.
  • A fine of up to $3,000.
  • Court-ordered alcohol treatment.
  • Test refusals result in a one-year license revocation. You can drive during this period by agreeing to use an ignition interlock device.
  • Up to three years of ignition interlock requirements.
  • License cancellation for three years. Reinstatement requires three years of ignition interlock use without the detection of drugs or alcohol.

To reinstate a revoked license, you must pay a license reinstatement fee of $680 plus an $18.50 application fee.  Also, you must show proof of insurance through a Minnesota SR22-qualified policy.

Woodbury Fourth Offense DWI Penalties

Fourth-offense DUIs raise the stakes for defendants. Minnesota law deems them major felonies with eligibility for hard time. To qualify for felony treatment, you must have had three previous misdemeanors DUI convictions in the previous ten years or a felony DUI at any time in the past.

Fourth offense DWI penalties include the following:

  • Up to seven years in prison.
  • A fine of up to $14,000 plus court costs.
  • Court-ordered alcohol treatment Alcohol treatment.
  • License cancellation.
  • Up to six years of Ignition interlock requirements during the revocation period.
  • Four to six years of zero alcohol and drug ignition interlock detection for license reinstatement.

To reinstate a revoked license, you must pay a license reinstatement fee of $680 plus an $18.50 application fee.  Also, you must show proof of insurance through a Woodbury SR22-qualified policy.

Woodbury DWI Offenses Under 21 Years of Age

Woodbury law enforces a zero-tolerance law for drinking and driving for anyone under 21. Zero tolerance creates a different standard of proof required for DWI Conviction in Woodbury for those who are underage.

Motorists over 21 face a DWI Conviction in Woodbury only if the state proves beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant had a BAC over the legal limit or was impaired. But zero tolerance makes underage motorists eligible for conviction if they have any amount of alcohol in their blood, even if they show no signs of impairment.

Zero tolerance laws mandate that courts suspend the defendant’s license for 30 days for a first offense and 180 days for subsequent violations.

Also, drivers under 21 years of age whose BAC level was above the legal limit of .08% face the same penalties as motorists over 21.

  • Up to 90 days in jail but there is no minimum. A BAC above .20 increases the maximum to one year in jail.
  • A fine of up to $1,000 plus court costs. A BAC over .20 raises the maximum fine to $3,000.
  • Test refusals result in an automatic 1-year license revocation.  Driving privileges may be restored during this time if you agree to install an ignition interlock device.

To reinstate a revoked license, you must pay a license reinstatement fee of $680 plus an $18.50 application fee.  Also, you must show proof of insurance through a Minnesota SR22-qualified policy.

As with regular DUIs, subsequent convictions result in progressively stiffer penalties.

Minnesota CDL DWI

Operators of commercial vehicles face stricter legal limit requirements than other motorists. While operating a commercial vehicle, drivers must have a BAC under .04%. They may not have any illegal drugs in their system. Further, they can face repercussions if they suffer impairment due to prescription- or over-the-counter medications.

As with regular DWIs, CDL DWIs use the standard of impairment for conviction. Even if the defendant’s BAC is under .04%, the state wins conviction if it can prove any level of impairment due to alcohol use.

Penalties include the following:

  • Up to 90 days in jail but there is no minimum. A BAC above .20 increases the maximum to one year in jail.
  • A fine of up to $1,000 plus court costs. A BAC over .20 raises the maximum fine to $3,000.
  • Test refusals result in an automatic 1-year license revocation.  Driving privileges may be restored during this time if you agree to install an ignition interlock device.

To reinstate a revoked license, you must pay a license reinstatement fee of $680 plus an $18.50 application fee.  Also, you must show proof of insurance through a Minnesota SR22-qualified policy.

As with regular DUIs, subsequent offenses result in progressively steeper penalties.

Hazardous Materials CDL DUI

The state increases penalties for hazardous material CDL DUI. A first offense requires a three-year CDL suspension. A second DWI Conviction in Woodbury carries a lifetime CDL ban. Additionally, a hazardous materials driver with even a trace amount of alcohol in his system faces an automatic 24-hour out-of-service period.

DUI Defenses

DUI charges frequently fall apart in court. This occurs for many reasons, including faulty testing, incorrect impairment accusations, and rising BAC levels between arrest and testing. These and other defenses can result in acquittal.

Challenging the Level of Impairment

Not all DUI charges have a basis in BAC test results. It’s possible for the defendant to have tested below the legal limit and still face arrest based on impairment. If an officer determines your driving abilities are compromised to any degree by alcohol, you can be charged regardless of your BAC.

When this is the case, the defense can win by challenging the level of impairment. Many circumstances can cause a police officer to mistakenly believe that a motorist was intoxicated.

Typical evidence of impairment includes the following:

  • Slurred speech
  • Acting in an unusual way
  • Smelling of alcohol
  • Red eyes
  • Failed field sobriety tests

There can be many reasons for the presence of these signs. A person cannot perform a field sobriety test because he is unable to balance on an injured ankle. These alternative explanations raise a reasonable doubt that requires acquittal.

Faulty Test Results

When a person’s BAC tests are above the legal limit, they face charges of DWI per se. Per se cases require no proof of impairment. The fact that the individual was above the legal limit is sufficient for a conviction.

Accordingly, the state must present the test results as evidence and test results are fallible. For instance, if the test administrators failed to maintain the proper chain of custody, the defense may succeed in convincing the court to suppress the evidence and dismiss the case.

The drawback of challenging the test results is that the state can fall back on impairment. As a zero-tolerance state, Woodbury holds motorists guilty of DWI if they are impaired, even when below the legal limit. As a result, if the state has solid proof of impairment, such as video of a swerving vehicle and a clearly intoxicated driver on a police body cam, then the state may prevail despite a successful challenge of test results.

Rising BAC

Rising BAC presents another avenue for defending a DUI charge. A motorist may have been pulled over when his BAC was under the legal limit. For example, he may have been driving a short distance home after having a few beers and been under the limit when the police executed a traffic stop. But by the time the blood test is conducted, the individual’s BAC has risen above the legal limit.

While this defense can be effective, it’s important that the state has no or poor evidence of impairment.

DWI penalties in Woodbury grow progressively stiffer with each repeated offense. Those who make a habit of DWI can find themselves in jail.

Also, the state allows for felony charges against even first-time offenders if they cause injuries due to DWI.

 

Talk to an Attorney About Your DWI Charges in Woodbury

If you have been charged with DWI in Woodbury, you have legal rights. The state must prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt. To construct an effective DWI defense, contact Gerald Miller for a consultation.

Related Content: What Is the Penalty for DWI in Minnesota?


About the author

Kyle Dreger

Kyle Dreger is a skilled DUI/DWI and Criminal Defense lawyer at Gerald Miller P.A. Kyle has received his law degree from the University of St. Thomas School of Law. He is also a professionally trained basketball player.

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