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DUI & Intoxication Crimes

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Most DUI arrests in Mississippi are misdemeanors – but the consequences can nevertheless be severe, costly, and extremely inconvenient. Potential costs of a DUI arrest may include impact to your career advancement or job choices, potential risks to professional licenses or security clearances, higher auto insurance rates, social stigma, and restrictions on travel to certain foreign countries such as Canada. Due to the potential long-term personal and economic impacts of a criminal DUI arrest, hiring an experienced and reputable criminal defense attorney is one of the most important long-term investments you can make in your future. If you’ve been charged with a DUI or intoxication crime in South Mississippi, Pascagoula criminal defense attorney Sean Buckley is ready to fight for your legal rights and defend your reputation.

 

What is a DUI in Mississippi?

 

Mississippi Code §63-11-30, in general terms, makes it unlawful for a person to drive or otherwise operate a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or any other substance. A person may also commit DUI in Mississippi by having a certain blood alcohol concentration (BAC) as follows:

 

  • 0.08% for adults 21 and over;

  • 0.02% for persons under 21

  • 0.04% for persons operating commercial vehicles

 

DUI convictions in Mississippi carry potential punishments as listed below, as well as the potential for driver’s license suspensions that vary according to the person’s DUI history and/or the circumstances of the offense.

 

DUI First Offense

 

The maximum jail sentence for a first-time DUI offense is 180 days in jail. Fortunately, for cases that aren’t capable of being resolved with dismissals or “not guilty” verdicts, we’re typically able to negotiate resolutions with no additional jail time ordered. Consequences for a DUI first offense in Mississippi are set by state law and include:

 

  • Jail time up to 48 hours (may be substituted for attendance at a “victim impact panel” upon a judge’s order);

  • Fines of $250 - $1,000;

  • Mandatory driver’s license suspension of 120 days.

 

Second Offense DUI

 

Consequences for a Second Offense DUI committed within 5 years of the prior DUI are set by state law and include:

 

  • $600 - $1,500 fine

  • 5 days to 6 months in jail

  • Community service work for 10 days to 6 months

  • Mandatory driver’s license suspension of 1 year.

 

Third Offense DUI

 

Consequences for a Third Offense DUI committed within 5 years of the prior offense are set by state law and include:

 

  • $2,000 - $5,000 fine

  • 1 year – 5 years incarceration in the MDOC; or in the county jail, at the discretion of the judge, when the offense did not involve serious injury or death to any person

  • Driver’s license suspension for the full period of the person’s sentence, and then, may drive only under an ignition interlock restricted license for 3 years.

 

Fourth and Subsequent Offense DUI

 

Consequence for a Fourth and Subsequent Offense DUI (without regard to the time period since the last DUI) are set by state law and include:

 

  • $3,000 - $10,000 fine

  • 2 years – 10 years incarceration in the MDOC

  • No driving without ignition interlock device for a period of 10 years;

  • Driver’s license suspension for the full period of the person’s sentence, and then, may drive only under an ignition interlock restricted license for 10 years.

 

Aggravated DUI

 

Anyone committing DUI who negligently causes death or serious injury to another person is guilty of a separate felony for each victim and shall be committed to the MDOC for 5-25 years for each victim, and multiple convictions may be run concurrently or consecutively at the discretion of the judge.

 

Court may order ignition interlock restriction as a condition of probation or post-release supervision up to 5 years.

 

DUI Child Endangerment

 

Anyone over 21 years old who commits DUI while transporting a child under 16 is guilty of the separate offense of endangering a child by DUI. The offense shall not be merged with the DUI offense for purposes of prosecution and sentencing. Punished as follows:

 

  • No serious injury or death of a child; first conviction = misdemeanor; fined up to $1,000 and imprisoned up to 12 months, or both

  • No serious injury or death, second conviction = misdemeanor; fined $1,000 - $5,000 or imprisoned for 1 year, or both.

  • No serious injury or death, third conviction = felony; fined $10k or more and imprisoned 1 -5 years in MDOC

  • Serious injury or death, regardless of the number of priors if any = felony; fine not less than $10,000 and imprisoned 5 years – 25 years MDOC.

 

Whatever the circumstances, if you’ve been charged with a DUI or intoxication crime in South Mississippi, Pascagoula - Gulfport criminal defense attorney Sean Buckley is ready to fight for your legal rights and defend your reputation.

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