A second-time conviction for a DUI in Alabama may have overwhelming consequences for a person’s career and legal standing. Authorities may take a second conviction with greater seriousness than a first offense and may increase the penalties you could be facing. If you have been charged with your second DUI, speak to an Alabama second-offense DUI Lawyer. An accomplished DUI attorney could defend you and advocate on your behalf.Where are DUI Charges Heard?
In Alabama, a second offense DUI charge is typically determined by the number of convictions a person has within a ten-year period. If the individual was convicted once within a ten-year period, their second arrest would be considered a second-offense DUI. The charge still considered a misdemeanor and could be heard in either Municipal Court or a District Court, depending on which agency made the arrest.How Prosecutors Handle Second-Time DUI Cases
Prosecutors handle second offense DUI charges very seriously and aggressively. While many jurisdictions might offer some kind of pretrial diversion to have a first offense charge dismissed, this may not be the case for a second offense DUI. The likely options that the prosecutor will present may include some type of guilty plea, which in Alabama would typically necessitate a minimum mandatory jail sentence or a trial. This is why it is essential for defendants to seek the services of a skilled Alabama second-offense DUI attorney.Penalties for Repeat Offenders
With a second offense DUI, a defendant could face a number of penalties. The person could be facing a monetary penalty of a fine from a minimum of $1,100 to a maximum of $5,100. Also, the individual may face a minimum mandatory five days in jail up to one year in jail. The five-day minimum jail sentence may be substituted for 30 days of community service at the discretion of the court.
If it is your second offense DUI conviction in Alabama, within 10 years, the driving privilege or driver’s license shall be revoked for a period of one year and the offender shall be required to have an ignition interlock device installed and operating on the designated motor vehicle driven by the offender for a period of two years from the date of issuance of a driver’s license indicating that the person’s driving privileges are subject to the condition of the installation and use of a certified ignition interlock device on a motor vehicle.
After a minimum of 45 days of the license revocation or suspension pursuant to Section 32-5A-304, 32-5A-191, or both, is completed, upon receipt of a court order from the convicting court, upon issuance of an ignition interlock restricted driver license, and upon proof of installation of an operational approved ignition interlock device on the designated vehicle of the person convicted, the mandated ignition interlock period of two years approved in this subsection shall start and the suspension period, revocation period, or both, as required under this subsection shall be stayed. The remainder of the driver license revocation period, suspension period, or both, shall be commuted upon the successful completion of the period of time in which the ignition interlock device is mandated to be installed and operational.
The court could also order a court referral, which is a DUI awareness program and alcohol testing program, as part of the DUI conviction.Diversion Programs and Probation Options
In Alabama, a person charged with a second DUI might not automatically qualify for diversionary programs. However, an experienced Alabama second-offense DUI lawyer may be able to negotiate into a diversionary process or some type of probation, though these options usually are not offered at first. Most courts may not agree to or consent to any kind of diversionary program or dismissal agreement for a second offense DUI. It is important to remember that much less leniency may be shown with a second offense charge.How an Alabama DUI Attorney Could Build a Defense
An Alabama second-offense DUI lawyer understands that defending someone accused of a second-offense DUI is a very serious matter as the defendant may face a minimum period of time in jail. Regardless of the number of previous DUIs, the prosecution still must prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt and defense lawyers must examine all evidence. These factors may include the constitutionality of the stop and arrest in the case, the forensic toxicology, paperwork issues, and jurisdictional issues.
Contact an Alabama second-offense DUI lawyer to learn what legal options may be available to you.