Not all DWIs are considered equal in the eyes of the law. The level of crime you are charged with has a significant impact on the charges brought against you. It’s important to know the different Minnesota Crime Classifications and how they can affect you. Working with the MInnesota DUI lawyers at Sieben Edmunds Miller will ensure that you are given fair treatment and the best possible results.
Minnesota DWI offense levels are:
Fourth Degree DWI
A fourth degree DWI may be a misdemeanor, but it should not be taken lightly. You will generally be charged with fourth degree DWI if it is your first offense and you took a blood alcohol test that returned a result of .08 or more, but less than .16. You can also be charged with a 4th degree DWI if your results are below .08 if it is alleged that you were impaired by alcohol while driving. This charge comes with a punishment of up to 90 days in jail and a $1,000 fine.
Third Degree DWI
If you are charged with a third degree DWI, your alleged crime has been escalated to a gross misdemeanor. This may be deemed necessary by the court if you have had a previous DWI charge in ten years or if you refused to take a blood alcohol test at the time of your arrest. You also can be charged with a DWI if your chemical test returns a result greater than .16. You face up to a year in jail and up to a $3,000 fine if you are convicted of a third degree DWI.
Second Degree DWI
When you are charged with a second degree DWI you are facing a gross misdemeanor charge. This may be your current charge if you have been charged with two DWI offenses in the past ten years, or if you have been charged with DWI once before but aggravating factors exist. The punishment for a second degree DWI is up to one year in jail, up to a $3,000 fine, and the potential of your vehicle being seized.
First Degree DWI
A first degree DWI is considered the most serious type of DWI offense. It is a felony in the state of Minnesota. You can be charged with a first degree DWI if you have been charged with one previously, if you have a prior conviction for criminal vehicular operation, or if you have had three prior DWI incidents in the past ten years. A first degree DWI conviction is the most serious, with a potential of up to seven years in prison and up to a $14,000 fine.
Blood Alcohol Test Refusal
Refusing a blood alcohol test at the time of your arrest for a DUI or DWI can mean an immediate suspension of your license. It can also affect the level of offense you are charged with. However, you do have a right to refuse certain types of tests. For example, you can refuse to take either a blood or urine test, but you cannot refuse both. The attorneys at Sieben Edmunds Miller will analyze the facts and the law regarding your test refusal charge.
Aggravating factors are another aspect of your charges that can affect your offense level. There can be a variety of aggravating factors. When you work with the lawyers of Sieben Edmunds Miller we will explain to you the specifics of your case and how to best defend against the alleged aggravating factors.
Don’t Let A DWI Conviction Derail Your Life!
Being accused of DWI or DUI can have a dramatic impact on your life. Choosing the right DWI attorney to defend you can mean the difference between a slap on the wrist and lifelong consequences. If you have been charged with a DWI or DUI, you need an experienced Minneapolis criminal defense lawyer and St.Paul criminal defense lawyer to help get you through this tough time in your life. Challenging a DWI / DUI case can be a complex process, but an experienced attorney knows what it takes.
The team at Sieben Edmunds Miller has helped many individuals charged with DUI or DWI clear their names and avoid a conviction. You can reach us by calling (651) 994-6744.
If you’re facing a DWI charge, you can trust the experienced Minnesota lawyers at Sieben Edmunds Miller to advocate for you. We proudly serve the cities of Burnsville, Bloomington, Minneapolis, Woodbury, Eagan, Mendota Heights, St. Paul, Hastings, Hudson, and River Falls in DWI cases. We also serve surrounding cities in Dakota County and throughout Minnesota and Wisconsin.