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Virginia Beach DUI Defense Attorneys
Aggressive Defense Against DUI Charges in Virginia
Virginia does not deal lightly with drunk and drugged drivers. As you fight your DUI charges, ensure you do so with a DUI lawyer from McCormack & McCormack. If you choose to work with us, you will receive aggressive defense from a team who will remain at your side. Contact us at (888) 490-0876.
Virginia DUI Laws
Driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol and drugs is a danger to the driver and their passengers and anyone else sharing the roads. That is why the commonwealth of Virginia has very strict and harsh laws regarding the punishment of DUI offenders.
Anyone driving with a blood-alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or higher can be arrested for driving under the influence. However, if you are under 21, you can be arrested for a BAC of 0.02% or higher since Virginia is a "zero tolerance" state. A person may also be arrested for DUI even if their BAC is less than .08. Additionally, if narcotics are found in a blood test, you might be arrested for DUI-D (Driving Under the Influence – Drugs).
Are you facing a DUI charge in Virginia? Call McCormack & McCormack today at (888) 490-0876 or contact us online to schedule a meeting with one of our DUI defense lawyers in Virginia Beach!
What are the Penalties for a DUI in Virginia?
For a first DUI offense, an offender is facing:
- Hefty fines
- Up to 12 months in jail
- Possibility of a 12-month license suspension
The penalties dramatically increase for second or subsequent convictions, depending on the time that has elapsed since your prior conviction, with subsequent offense convictions carrying an increasing range of mandatory minimum time as the number of offenses increases. Additionally, if your blood-alcohol level is over 0.15 or 0.20, there are separate mandatory jail sentences upon conviction.
Is a DUI a Felony in Virginia?
In Virginia, a DUI (Driving Under the Influence) offense can be either a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the circumstances. The classification of the offense is determined by factors such as prior convictions, the level of impairment, and whether any injuries or fatalities occurred as a result of the DUI.
Generally, a first or second DUI offense within ten years is considered a misdemeanor in Virginia. A third or subsequent DUI offense within ten years is typically considered a Class 6 felony.
A DUI offense can also be elevated to a felony if it involves certain aggravating factors, such as causing serious injury or death to another person. In such cases, the driver may face charges such as DUI manslaughter or DUI maiming, which are felonies.
Field Sobriety Tests
The Standardized Field Sobriety Test (SFST) is made of up 3 individual tests:
- Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGN) test - the officer will move a pen or small object back and forth as they observe the person's eyes .
- Walk-and-turn test - the officer instructs the person to walk in a straight line for a certain amount of steps, turn around and then return back.
- One-leg stand test - the officer instructs the person to stand with one foot off the ground and hold it for until told to put it down.
While the person performs these sobriety tests, the officer is looking for common signs that they are intoxicated. These include swaying/hopping, slurred speech and not following instructions correctly.
DUI Defense Strategies
There are several different ways to fight charges of DUI in Virginia. Police misconduct is one of the most common causes of dismissal. Police officers can only pull you over if another motorist or witness has tipped them off if they witness signs of intoxication themselves or upon observation of any violation of the law. After you've been pulled over, they must treat you respectfully and take adequate measures to determine whether or not you are intoxicated. If they make a mistake when guiding you through field sobriety tests, or if they fail to calibrate a breathalyzer machine before having you take a breath test, you may have grounds for dismissal of your case.
Contact Our Virginia Beach DUI Defense Lawyers Today
Speak with a Virginia Beach DUI attorney from McCormack & McCormack immediately if you have been charged with drunk driving. Our lawyers will thoroughly investigate the circumstances of your arrest and will help you present substantial evidence of misconduct or a faulty BAC test result. We can also provide DUI defense for military men and women facing charges that may damage their future military careers. Contact us at your earliest convenience to schedule a case evaluation with an attorney who will fight your case tirelessly.
Contact McCormack & McCormack today to schedule a FREE consultation with one of our DUI defense attorneys in Virginia Beach! We are proud to represent clients in and around Hampton Roads, including Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake, Portsmouth, Newport News, Suffolk, Hampton, Williamsburg/James City County, York County and Northampton and Accomack Counties on the Eastern Shore.