Received your second or third DUI? We can help.
Being charged with a second or third DUI charges can be extremely scary. Most jurisdictions in Maryland seek active incarceration on repeat offenders in DUI cases The best thing that you can do is fight the charges with an experienced repeat offender DUI lawyer, to make sure you don't receive jail time if you are found guilty of a third dui conviction. There are serious potential penalties to both your driver's license, and your freedom. Maryland has recently enacted more severe penalties for repeat offenders with prior second or third dui convictions, which make subsequent offense DUI cases high stakes. If you roll over and enter a plea at your trial date, you could be spending some serious jail time behind bars.
What can increase my potential for incarceration?
There are three major sources of increased penalties in a repeat second DUI or third offense dui charges:
1. You may be on probation for one of your prior DUI offenses.
How do I know if I'm on probation still?
Generally, the easiest way to tell would be to have an attorney check the commitment record from your prior DUI/DWI in Maryland sentence. If you know the exact date of your prior Maryland DUI sentencing, you may be able to get a rough idea of the length of your probation based on the Court you were in. In Maryland District Court, Courts typically are capped at three years of probation. That probation sentence could begin upon release from incarceration. In Maryland Circuit Court, Courts typically are capped at five years of probation. That probation sentence could begin upon release as well.
Remember just because you did not have a probation agent, does not mean you were not on un-supervised probation for your third offense dui charges.
2. If you were transporting a minor, or subject to a mandatory minimum sentence
Transporting a minor while driving under the influence carriers a maximum penalty of:
For a first offense, a maximum sentence of imprisonment not exceeding 2 years or a fine not exceeding $2,000 or both
For a second offense with a prior dui conviction or dwi conviction, a maximum penalty of imprisonment not exceeding 3 years or a fine not exceeding $3,000 or both.
3. The State may file a "Subsequent Offender Notice"
The State can file a notice of intent to seek enhanced penalties during the prosecution of your case. If this notice is produced for the Court, the penalties under Maryland's DUI laws scale up quickly.
What are subsequent offender penalties?
Maryland Transportation Code Section 21-902 defines the penalties for DUI cases in Maryland. The penalties for repeat offenders are different for DUI vs DWI.
For a repeat conviction under 21-902(a) A Driving under the influence charge, there are a number of enhancements the State can seek at sentencing based on your prior convictions.
If you have a prior DUI conviction, or a DWI or drugged driving conviction from prior offenses within the last five years, you could be subject to a maximum sentence of imprisonment not exceeding 2 years and/or a $2,000 fine
If you have two prior driving under the influence, DWI, or drugged driving convictions from prior offenses, in ANY STATE, you could be subject to a maximum sentence of imprisonment not exceeding 5 years and/or a $5,000 fine.
If you have three or more prior driving under the influence, DWI, or drugged driving convictions from prior offenses, in ANY STATE, you could be subject to a maximum sentence of imprisonment not exceeding 10 years and/or a $10,000 fine.
There could also be mandatory minimum incarceration.
Mandatory minimums are referred to as requirements by law that a person serve an active jail sentence. This means that the Judge must incarcerate you, or in the alternative, place you in an inpatient treatment center, or put you on home detention. These do not change maximum penalties in the same way that subsequent offender notices do.
In Maryland, a person who is convicted of a second 21-902(a) Driving under the influence of alcohol charge within five years of a prior conviction, is subject to a mandatory penalty of imprisonment for not less than five days.
A person is convicted of a third 21-902(a) Driving under the influence of alcohol charge within five years of a prior conviction is subject to a mandatory minimum penalty of imprisonment for not less than 10 days.
There are additional requirements that a person complete an alcohol abuse assessment and participate in an alcohol program ordered by the Court as well.
If a person is convicted of a second or third 21-902(a) Driving under the influence of alcohol charge within five years of a prior conviction and refused an intoximeter test, they could be subject to imprisonment not exceeding 2 months or a fine not exceeding $500 or both. The Court cannot impose additional penalties for refusing a breath test unless the State's Attorney serves notice of the refusal on the Defendant or their attorney before
- Acceptance of a plea
- 15 days before trial in Circuit court or 5 days before trial in District Court
You may not have a prior conviction for the purposes of these enhancements
If you received a Probation before Judgment, or "PBJ" you may not have a prior conviction despite having a dui arrest, a dui charge, prior Maryland driver's license consequences, and even a trial.
What about my license?
You are likely to be facing a license suspension from the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration when charged with a second dui or a third offense dui charges in Maryland. Your Driver's license can be one of the most important rights you have in Maryland, but license suspensions are sometimes unavoidable depending on the facts specific to your case. You may be required to install an ignition interlock device in your motor vehicle within 45 days of being charged per Maryland DUI law.
Below is a DUI License Penalty chart that explains what type of license suspension you could be facing from the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration as a result of a second or third dui charge:
How should I prepare for Court?
The first and most important thing you can do is hire a qualified attorney. Max Frizalone and Luke Woods are highly skilled repeat DUI attorneys. It is likely that you will need to take your case to trial to secure your freedom, so you want to have the right lawyer in your corner. Additionally, a qualified attorney is likely to recommend that you begin a treatment regimen, and get started on the path to curing any driver's license issues that may have arisen. This may require ignition interlock device installation in your motor vehicle, which is a likely condition of any probation for a second dui conviction or third dui conviction.
We pride ourselves on being one of Maryland's most accessible law firms. Our 24 hour attorney line is always open for anyone with a second dui or third dui charge, give us a call and be directly connected with Max Frizalone or Luke Woods. We are more than happy to give you a free consultation and case review for your dui charge. Don't wait until the last minute to find the right attorney for your second or third dui charge. Failing to hire the right attorney could result in jail time.
The Criminal justice system in Maryland isn't kind to those who don't take their second dui charge or third dui charge seriously. Third DUI penalties can be severe, there's no time to waste while you are waiting for your trial. Call us or fill out one of our contact forms to request an attorney client privileged appointment today. Whether this is your second offense dui, third offense dui, or fourth offense dui, we can help make sure that you have the best dui defense attorney in your corner. We know the law enforcement procedures used to investigate these cases, and are highly regarded as dui attorneys.
What could be my defenses
Legal penalties are stiff for prior duis, and can be even worse if you display a high blood alcohol content. Don't let your repeat dui ruin your life. There may be reasonable doubt in your case that is overlooked. Just because you produced a breath sample over the legal limit doesn't mean your case is a lost cause. Some common dui defenses in second offense dui and third offense dui cases include:
- Improper administration of field sobriety tests
- Challenging an Officer's "opinions"
- Faulty accident reconstruction
- Actual physical control of your vehicle
- Breath testing inadequcies
- Lack of probable cause to stop a vehicle
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Upper Marlboro Office
14513 Main Street, Ste B,
Upper Marlboro, MD 20772